It’s important to know these things you should never flush down your toilet. There are only two things you should ever use the system for, human waste and toilet paper. However, many people view their toilet as their personal dumping ground, after all, out of sight, out of mind, right?
The problem is that many of these items being flushed can cause significant problems to your plumbing, public sewerage systems and the environment in general.
While you should never dump anything in your toilet that should go in the bin instead, these seven items are the ones that can cause the most problems.
1. Baby wipes
Don’t believe the marketing machine. Baby wipes are often advertised on the packaging as flushable, but this is not true. A flushable wipe does not exist. Because wipes do not degrade in water, they can clog plumbing systems in homes and damage pipes at wastewater treatment plants.
A large clump of accumulated wet wipes or baby wipes in a plumbing pipe must be removed by hand (read: it’s expensive and quite unpleasant).
It is not only the wipes that accumulate quickly but other waste products too are caught up in this mass of wipes and are difficult to break down.
This is becoming an increasingly large problem, particularly as these wipes combine with other products to create enormous masses that choke sewers and waterways.
2. Paper towels
This might come as a surprise to many people; after all, aren’t these towels just made of paper? This is true, but it is a very different kind of product to toilet paper, and these towels can cause enormous problems in your plumbing.
Paper towels do not dissolve in water like toilet paper. Although they’ll absorb water, they’ll remain intact and grow significantly. When a paper towel snags in the pipes or sinks to the bottom, it causes drains and toilets to clog. The more paper towel you flush, the more likely it is for a drain to become blocked.
3. Feminine hygiene products
The purpose of tampons, sanitary pads, and other such feminine hygiene products is to absorb liquid and, in some cases, to expand several times their original size to accommodate that liquid.
When flushed, these items can swell as they absorb water, blocking pipes that go to the sewer, or clogging septic systems, causing the toilet water to back up and overflow. Therefore, all feminine products should be thrown away in the rubbish or disposed of in a dedicated sanitary bin in a safe manner.
4. Hazardous materials and medications
The fourth item on our list of things you should never flush down your toilet may surprise you. When it comes to helping prevent water pollution, it is advised not to flush down the toilet medicines or potentially hazardous materials such as paint and cleaning products.
Rather than throwing out unused or expired medication, you should consider taking it back to one of the take-back sites at your nearest pharmacy.
When it comes to household hazardous waste, your local waste transfer station should be able to offer you recycling or disposal options that are safe and ensures they are correctly disposed of.
5. Fats, oil and grease
Oils and grease that are poured down the drain quickly cool and coagulate. They mix with the other non-flushable items like baby wipes and paper towels and create a solid mass in the sewers called a fatberg.
As a result, these congealed masses of fat, wet wipes, and food waste are causing serious problems for Australia’s wastewater treatment plants, and they cost the government millions to remove.
6. Kitty litter
It is not recommended to flush feline waste down the toilet like human waste. In addition to potentially introducing parasites into the water supply, flushing cat litter or waste down the toilet can also clog a toilet, as the litter can absorb water and cause the pipe to clog.
Cat litter and waste should always be bagged and disposed of in the garbage.
7. All other hygiene or personal products are among Things You Should Never Flush Down Your toilet
The last item on our list of things you should never flush down your toilet is somewhat controversial. Although it can be convenient, pretty much any product you use in the bathroom should go in the bin, not the toilet.
This includes bandages, nappies, condoms, dental floss – even your old contact lenses. They all have the potential to block up your pipes and community sewer systems. It doesn’t matter how small they are because it all adds up when millions of people are doing it.
If your toilet or plumbing becomes blocked, call the team at All Day Plumbing
We are your reliable, around the clock emergency plumbing service in Sydney. All Day Plumbing has technicians available 24 hours a day because plumbing issues are not restricted to business hours.
Our service at All Day Plumbing is fast and easy, and we guarantee 100 per cent customer satisfaction. So you can relax knowing that your problem is our priority. You can request same-day service by calling 1300 583 587.