Should You Flush Food Down the Toilet?

As we close in on Thanksgiving, people always seem to have leftover food that goes uneaten. And after days sitting in the refrigerator, taking up space, you want a quick way to dispose of it. So, the quick answer to the question of, “should you flush food down the toilet” is no, never, ever!

Because food doesn’t break down as easily and as quickly as toilet paper and human waste, (which are the only things that should go down the toilet), food scraps can potentially back up raw sewage into your home and clog your sewer line. Even something as smooth and creamy as mashed potatoes continues to stay together in the pipe and becomes a clog risk especially if it comes in contact with other items that shouldn’t be flushed.

What should you do with old food that is no longer edible and should be thrown out? There are a few good alternatives to flushing your food!

Garbage Disposals: These in-drain appliances macerate food scraps before sending them down the drain to ensure they flow freely without getting clogged. There are some limitations to the garbage disposal though. Don’t put anything too large in the disposal that could clog the disposal itself. Also, don’t put anything greasy down the disposal. This will still have a tendency to clog the pipes. And always remember to run water in the drain when running the disposal to ensure everything drains successfully. If you don’t have a garbage disposal installed in your kitchen, contact Gold Seal Plumbing for a free quote.

Composting: The best way to manage food leftovers is to compost them. You can keep a small bin under the sink and empty it regularly into an outside compost bin in your back yard or take it to a composting facility.

Garbage Can: Because composting is not available everywhere, the third option is to dispose the food waste into your garbage can. Most people don’t like to do this because of the smell, thus the reason for flushing the food to begin with, there are some ways to help. Place all the food scraps in a plastic bag prior to putting in the trash can. This will keep the smell down. You can also keep a large plastic bag in the freezer and add food items to it until garbage day. Then send the frozen bag to the trash and viola, no smell.

So, if you did flush food down the toilet and find yourself with a clogged drain, please call Gold Seal Plumbing to help. Trust us, we’ve seen it all!