7 Things You Should Never Flush Down the Toilet
Does your toilet regularly get blocked, requiring expensive maintenance and repairs? You could be inadvertently contributing to the issue by flushing the wrong items down the toilet.
Even if you know about avoiding the obvious ones, like nappies, you might be surprised at some of the other items that can cause blockages — from dental floss and cotton balls to cat litter and condoms.
Keep reading for details on seven things you should never, ever flush down the toilet, along with reasons why.
1. Flushable Cleaning Wipes
Do you buy bathroom cleaning wipes which are advertised as flushable? Don't believe what you read on the packet. It's been found that all cleaning wipes, even those labelled as safe to flush, can contribute to serious blockages.
According to estimates, Australian water services providers spend millions of dollars clearing these blockages each year, and having to deal with a blockage in your own home can be pricey, too.
Just because wipes are capable of being flushed down the toilet doesn't mean that they'll break down in the same way as toilet paper. Stay safe and always throw wet wipes away instead.
Most disposable nappies are made from a special kind of plastic that's designed to expand when it comes into contact with water. That means that any dirty nappies you attempt to flush away will quickly cause a blockage, and you'll be forced to contact a plumber for assistance.
Seal nappies inside plastic bags and throw them away instead of flushing.
Think condoms are so small that flushing them away is harmless? Think again.
Condoms are made from latex, which doesn't break down in water, meaning that they can cause blockages both in your home and in the wider sewage system.
It's much easier and safer to tie a knot in the top of condoms and throw them away. Don't end a romantic night by blocking your new partner's toilet!
4. Cotton Balls
Cotton balls seem pretty similar to toilet paper, so you could be forgiven for thinking that they're safe to flush.
However, instead of breaking down like tissues, cotton balls tend to clump together in your pipes, eventually leading to large blockages that a professional will have to deal with.
5. Dental Floss
Dental floss is so thin and tiny, it couldn't possibly cause plumbing problems, right?
Dental floss isn't biodegradable, and when flushed it quickly wraps around other items in your pipes. This makes small clogs much larger, and if you're flossing daily, it won't take long for a large ball of floss to form. Throw it in your bathroom bin instead.
6. Cat Litter
The logic is understandable here, but there are two major reasons you should never flush cat litter down your toilet.
First, the litter itself is usually made of clay, sand or woodchip, all of which can damage your pipes, get stuck in your plumbing and cause large blockages.
Secondly, cat waste contains toxins which can be extremely dangerous to aquatic life. When you flush litter away, you risk exposing wildlife to these harmful chemicals.
7. Tampons and Pads
Feminine hygiene products are one of the major culprits when it comes to toilet issues. These items can cause deep blockages and even lead to flooding. Throw feminine hygiene items away in your bathroom bin, or try reusable products, like menstrual cups or cloth pads.
Want to avoid unnecessary issues with your plumbing? Make sure that you never flush any of the items listed above down your toilet.
If it's too late and you're already dealing with blockages, contact us for help today.