How to Dispose of Cooking Oil Properly Without Damaging the Environment

how to dispose of cooking oil

Last Updated on August 2, 2021

Large amounts of cooking oil can help you fry pastries, chicken, sausages, and eggs. However, many people might pour cooking oil into a sink, draining it into the plumbing system of the house. While this may look like a quick way of getting rid of cooking oil, it might cause some plumbing issues.

Repairing pipes can be costly and time-consuming. Not to mention, the system will become faulty due to solidified cooking oil. In this post, we will show you how to dispose of cooking oil in the right manner to avoid plumbing complications. Whether you are planning to dispose of olive oil, frying oil, or canola oil, we are going to give you an insight into multiple techniques of getting rid of cooking oil correctly.

What Happens if Oils Are Poured Into a Kitchen Sink?

As mentioned earlier, used cooking oil can cause some defects in your plumbing system or sewer system. However, in some instances, you might drain it into your sink accidentally. If this happens, you have to take some preventive measures to keep your drain pipes in good condition. Sewer blockages can cause serious stagnation in multiple pipes found in your home. Here are some of the actions you might take to keep your pipes in good condition:

  • Use white vinegar and baking soda to get rid of the cooking oil that might be in your plumbing system.
  • A drain cleaner might also be ideal for getting rid of the cooking oil that might be in your pipes.

To keep your pipes in good condition, you have to opt for other cooking oil disposal methods.

How to Dispose of Cooking Oil Waste Using Environmentally Friendly Techniques

Dispose of It With Other Items in the Food Waste Bin

Once you finish frying food, leave the used cooking oil for about 30-45 minutes so that it cools off completely. Then, pour the used cooking oil gently into a bottle or a large container from your frying pan, depending on your preferences. A kitchen roll might be ideal for clearing the small quantities of oil that may be on your utensils.

Next, use a lid to close the container or the bottle; keep it tightly closed to prevent any oil leakages.

Afterwards, throw the bottle or container into the bin, plastic bag, or trash bag that stores other food disposals. The sealed container should be stored in bags that don’t have sharp objects. Sharp objects that might be in the bin can pierce the sealable plastic container, causing a mess. You have to be cautious while putting the sealable container/non-breakable container in bags and bins.

Furthermore, the used cooking oil can also be disposed of in a solid form (cooled cooking oil). However, you have to place the used oil in the freezer compartment so that it solidifies, changing its form from liquid to solid to become a cooled oil. If you choose this method, you should do it before your bins are being collected, so you don’t have to deal with the mess when it returns to ambient temperature.

Restaurants in the Food Industry Dealing With Fried Foods

Since restaurants use a lot of oil while frying large quantities of food, most restaurants know how to dispose of waste cooking oil properly. If there is a restaurant close to your home or neighbourhood, you can drop off the waste cooking oil in such restaurants.

Get in Touch With Waste Disposal Services or Food Waste Recycling Service

If you live in a neighbourhood with hazardous waste disposal services, you have to get in touch with the management. On the other hand, you can search for hazardous waste services or the closest local recycling centre to you. The local council might also help you get rid of various cooking oils at an economical price.

Hazardous waste disposal services also handle various wastes like toxic waste, common cooking oil, and medical sanitary products. Also, if such services offer door-to-door waste collection, they might be ideal for handling moderately hazardous materials like waste cooking oil.

Once you get the contact of such services, call them and inquire about used oil disposal. They will let you know how they do a waste collection. However, waste collection procedures might vary from one company to another.

Compost

Well, some common cooking oils, especially vegetable oils, are made from natural plants such as sunflower, corn, soy, coconut, and grape seed.

Since such oils are plant extracts, they can be blend perfectly with other compost waste materials to decompose slowly without affecting the environment. Apart from that, various used cooking oils can nourish some of the creatures living in that ecosystem, such as earthworms. Small animals live in such areas, relying on decomposing food and cooking oils for survival.

Some earthworms love ingesting waste oils. While vegetable oil can be disposed of in a compost pit, only small amounts of the oil should be disposed of. If you dispose of the vegetable oil in large quantities, it might minimize the aeration within the compost pit, causing more complications such as suffocating wildlife living there.

Not to mention, large quantities of oil can be washed off to water bodies by rainwater. As a result, the used cooking oil will affect the water’s oxygen levels.

On the other hand, animal oil should not be disposed of in compost pits and compost piles. It attracts various pests, which might make the pile look unattractive.

Mixing Oil With Other Elements or Components

If you don’t want to dispose of oil in liquid form, you can mix it with other components. Examples of such components include flour, sawdust, and sand. Once you mix oil with such components, it seeps through the solid particles.

Not to mention, this oil disposal method is not as cumbersome as other waste disposal methods. The oil gets absorbed by other elements, making it easier for you to dispose of it without creating a mess.

Cooking Oil Recycling

Well, cooking oil can be collected by different companies that specialize in oil recycling. Various types of used cooking oil can be processed into different products in recycling centres. Such companies can process used cooking oil to produce biofuel or produce biodiesel. Multiple oil recycling techniques can be used to achieve different results.

Biofuel and biodiesel can be used in different appliances to produce electricity. Apart from that, companies can recycle cooking oil by creating different environmentally friendly products. Used cooking oil can be a source of renewable energy if it’s recycled effectively. The resources action programme also supports resource management techniques like recycling. Also, recycled cooking oil might be more affordable than other types of fuel. Plus, recycling cooking oil can also minimize environmental pollution.

Get Rid of Used Cooking Oils the Right Way

And there you have it, everything you need to dispose of different types of cooking oils properly. Well, some companies might collect cooking oil waste free of charge. Moreover, multiple companies are good at recycling cooking oil to generate fuel, which can be used in different applications. Recycling oil preserves various types of fossil fuels and is a great environmentally friendly alternative.

Ensure that you clean the grease that might be left on your utensils after pouring used cooking oils into various containers. There are tons of methods that you can use to dispose of used cooking oil, but they may not suit everyone, so choose one that makes sense to you and is also the most convenient.

In conclusion, do not pour large quantities of oil down the sink; doing this can cause some complications in your drain and cost you more money than just disposing it correctly.

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