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Fats, Oils, and Grease (F.O.G.) is found in common food and food ingredients such as meat, fish, butter, cooking oil, mayonnaise, gravies, sauces and food scraps.
F.O.G. can build up in your private side sewer or in the public sewer system and can block it, resulting in a sewage backup into your home, onto the street, or in our natural water bodies.
Everyday washing of plates, pot, pans and cooking equipment sends F.O.G down drain. Small amounts of F.O.G. washed down the drain over time can eventually build up in the sewer system.
It is the section of pipe that carries wastewater from your home or building’s plumbing system to the public sewer main (usually located under the street).
Property owners are responsible for maintaining and repairing their side sewer.
No, you may still have a problem if you wash even small amounts of food and F.O.G. from your plates, pots, pans and cooking equipment down the drain. Over time this can still build up in your sewer.
Call a plumber or side sewer cleaning service first, as the problem is most likely to be in your home’s side sewer. However, if sewage is coming into your property when you are not using water, you should call for a Seattle Public Utilities’ maintenance crew immediately at (206) 386-1800.
If the blockage is in your side sewer, you are responsible for the maintenance and repair. If the blockage is in the public sewer system, the City will clear the problem.
F.O.G. buildup can cause sewage to backup into your home or property or others near you. If you are identified as a source of the F.O.G. discharge, you can be held accountable for cleanup costs (Seattle Municipal Code 21.16).
There three things you can do:
Yes, there are businesses in the Puget Sound area that accept waste grease, such as Standard Biodiesel or General Biodiesel.
F.O.G. will still build up in your side sewer if you use a garbage disposal. We prefer that you scrape all remaining food scraps from your plates, pots, and pans into your food and yard waste cart. Soak up remaining fats, oils, and grease with a paper towel and also dispose of them in your food and yard waste cart.