Fats, Oils and Grease – FOG
Protect your pipes! Safe disposal of fats, oils and grease (FOG) will protect your pipes from clogging and help protect your property.
Fats, oils and grease go in your green bin – not down your drain or toilet!
Fats, oils and grease are byproducts of cooking. These include:
- Butter or margarine
- Cooking oils (includes deep frying oils)
- Meat fats
- Milk and cream
- Olive oil
- Salad dressings
- Sandwich spreads
- Sauces and gravies
Why Are Fats, Oil and Grease a Concern?
How you dispose of fats, oil and grease (FOG) can have a serious impact on your home and the environment. When poured down your sinks, drains or toilets, FOG will cool, harden and clog the pipes that take the wastewater from your house to the treatment plant.
This can cause untreated sewage to back up and flood your basement or your neighbour’s basement. It could also back up onto streets and surrounding areas, polluting the natural environment.
Ensure FOG is disposed of properly to avoid harmful impacts to human health and the environment. Repairing sewage infrastructure because of fats, oils and grease damage can also lead to increased water rates.
What Can You Do?
Fats, oils and grease are organic waste and should be placed in your green bin.
- Before washing pots, pans and dirty dishes, wait for fats, oils and grease to harden
- Wipe with a paper towel or scrape it into the green bin
Liquid oil disposal
If fats, oils and grease are in liquid form, leave it in the pan to cool or pour the liquid into a container such as a tin can or bowl to cool then empty into green bin.
Liquid cooking oils like vegetable oil, canola oil, sunflower oil and olive oil that won’t solidify can be dropped off in a tightly sealed container, no more than four litres in size, at one of York Region’s Waste Depots.
Frequently Asked Questions
I don’t use a green bin. Where can I put my fats, oils and grease?
You can place it in your garbage can or bring it to one of the Waste Depots.
What do I do with oil that does not harden and is in liquid form?
Allow to cool then pour into a container such as a tin can or bowl, then empty container into the green bin or garbage. Liquid cooking oil can also be dropped off in a tightly sealed container, no more than four litres in size at one of the Waste Depots.
Why can’t I pour fats, oils and grease down the drain?
Water and oil do not mix. Fats, oils and grease will eventually cool in the pipe, harden and cause a blockage.
What if I use hot water, soap or other chemicals to prevent the fats, oils and grease from hardening in my pipes?
Fats, oils and grease will eventually cool and harden in the pipe even when hot water, soaps or chemicals are used. The use of any chemical to facilitate the passage of oils and grease in sewer pipes is illegal in York Region.
Is flushing fats, oils and grease down the toilet OK?
No. All your wastewater pipes are connected to a single sewer pipe from your home. The drains in your toilet, shower, kitchen, laundry or bathtub all connect to the same sewer pipe.
Is it acceptable to use my food waste grinder while I pour fats, oils and grease down the drain?
No. A food waste grinder grinds up items before passing them into your sewer pipes. It does not break down fats, oils and grease. In fact, food waste contributes to clogged pipes as well. It is better to screen out food particles before they go down the drain and place them in the green bin.
Are there other uses for my grease?
Yes! Waste fats and grease can be used to make suet to feed birds. Restaurants and industries that have large amounts of grease can have it recycled into animal feed or biodiesel.