Monthly Archives: November 2020

Cooking Clean-up for Fats, Oils, and Grease

It is the day before Thanksgiving, and you are all prepared to start cooking away… but have you thought about the clean up process?


Pouring fats, oils, and grease (FOG) down the drain causes plumbing issues including build up in the pipes, clogging, and basement backups. These issues are also seen at the Water Reclamation Facility and in sewer pipes around the city from improper disposal of FOG.

Whether you are frying your turkey or roasting in the oven, every household should have a plan to dispose of the fats, oils, and grease from cooking a delicious Thanksgiving meal. We contacted the ReWorks Household Hazardous Waste Recycling Center (HHWRC), the solid waste management authority for all of Summit County, to find the best options for reusing or recycling of cooking oil.

All of Summit County residents can bring cooking oil to the center for proper disposal, free of charge. The HHWRC is open to all residents (no businesses) and collects hundreds of gallons of cooking oil every season. When disposing at HHWRC, oil must be stored in clearly marked plastic or steel containers no larger than 5 gallons and no more than 15 gallons can be dropped off per vehicle.

Another disposal option is letting the oil cool, pouring it into a sealable container, allowing it to solidify, and placing that container into a plastic bag before disposing in the trash. Adding paper towels, shredded paper, or paper napkins to the container will help with the solidifying process of the oil. As a reminder, cooking oil should never be placed in curbside recycling bins.

Instead of disposal, some choose to strain and re-use the oil for frying other foods. Let the oil cool to a safe temperature and use a utensil to remove any large pieces from cooking. Place a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth over the container used to store the oil in and begin to pour carefully in case of more large pieces at the bottom of the fryer. Store the oil in a cool, dry location.


Find the seasonal hours of ReWorks Household Hazardous Waste Recycling Center at

Blog post written by HHWRC:

Dispose Of Fog Properly

Is Your Rain Barrel Ready for the Freezing Temps?

Winterize Your Rain Barrel


Is Your Rain Barrel Ready for the Freezing Temps?

As we get closer to snow fall and colder temperatures, it is important to take time for winterizing your rain barrel. This will keep the life of your barrel lasting longer and protect even the sturdiest of plastic from getting brittle or expanding if water freezes inside. Winterizing your rain barrel is an easy process to save the barrel and other hardware from being replaced due to damage from the elements.

The steps below will make your rain barrel winter-ready before the temperatures begin to drop.

  • Drain all water from the rain barrel and leave the spigot open.

This prevents the water from freezing and cracking the plastic. The spigot staying open ensures that no moisture will remain and break the water seal.

  • Remove the hoses and rain spout diverter then detach barrel from gutter/downspout.

Hoses split easily in cold temperatures and should be stored indoors. If you have a rain spout diverter, replace it with a flexible extension to redirect the downspout away from the house.

  • Clean the barrel by removing debris and filtering the screen.

Some barrels have a mesh or filter inside to collect debris. Make sure this is cleaned before storing indoors or turning barrel upside down. This step will prevent mold or other fungus from growing inside the barrel.

  • Store barrel upside-down in a garage or shed, or outside in a sheltered/covered area.

Storing the rain barrel inside can protect against accidental water accumulation through the colder months. If storing outside, keep it upside down to prevent water accumulation and cover with a tarp to help protect from elements. Plastic rain barrels can get brittle in the cold so storing indoors is the best option. 

Once all steps are completed, the rain barrel will be safe through the winter months and the life of the barrel will be extended that much longer. Each year it is important to clean your barrel from built up debris but taking the time to winterize is just as important!