14 Things You Should Never Flush

April 2, 2016

We’ve all been there. You have a houseful of guests and you are late for your own party. You quickly flush the pail of cat litter you were supposed to take out to the garbage along with your new baby’s dirty diaper. It’s all waste, right? Does it flush? Unfortunately, it doesn’t matter if it flushes – the problem may occur deep in your pipes, where you won’t notice until things go awry. To keep your toilet in the best working condition, we’ve prepared a list of items you should never flush. If you restrict your family to the basics–#1, #2 and a little bit of toilet paper here and there, you should be golden. While you might think a successful flush of the toilet means you will never see whatever item you were hoping to remove from your life again, it does not. All of these items on the ‘No Flush’ list can result in serious plumbing damage in the long run, if not in the immediate future.

  • Bathroom wipes: these moist towelettes might be advertised as “flushable wipes” but in fact are not degradable and end up getting stuck in sewer systems, ultimately causing heaps of damage. No doubt, these are a great product to keep in your home. Simply throw them in the trash when you are finished.
  • Disposable diapers: You might be able to get it down after a couple flushes but these non-biodegradable gems will ultimately catch in the U-bend and cause a fierce clog to the system.
  • Cat litter: clay + sand = DO NOT FLUSH
  • Cigarette butts: cigarettes are full of toxic chemicals we’d all like to keep out of the sewer system.
  • Fats, oils, greases: best to scrape these guys directly into the trash or designated grease jar for later use. While they may seem to take a liquid form that is fully flushable while hot, they ultimately congeal into a pipe-clogging wax.
  • Dental Floss: go ahead and string this non-biodegradable noose around your plumbing system if you want to deal with the repercussions. Is the trash can really so far away?
  • Band-aids: non-biodegradable plastics cause clogs and result in numerous issues for the sewage system.
  • Paper towels: One paper towel may seem reasonable. It’s not. Paper towels are not toilet paper. They do not breakdown like toilet paper and can result in a seriously debilitating clog to the system.
  • Excessive amounts of toilet paper: Just don’t. When it comes to your use of toilet paper, try the ‘save some for later’ approach.
  • Prescription medication: medications are full of toxins that cause damage to the environment and can result in a dangerous cocktail of chemicals in our water system. If there are no medical disposal facilities in your area, the FDA recommends mixing the drugs with cat litter or coffee grounds and throwing them in the garbage.
  • Toilet bowl cleaning head: we all like cleaning our toilets with a magical wand. After cleaning the bowl, the disposable head attachment must be thrown in the garbage—NOT THE TOILET.
  • Tampons and pads: they’re meant to absorb moisture and expand. That’s NOT what you want in your pipes.
  • Condoms: wrap them in some TP before you throw them in the garbage if you don’t want them sitting at the top of your trash can, just don’t flush them.
  • Hair: one of the very worst things to flush. Ever heard of a hairball? Just imagine one of those filling up your pipes. Not much is going to get past it.

The party will go on without you. Do not sacrifice your delicate plumbing system for the sake of time. In the case that your system is clogged or you need a professional opinion, your friends at Baker Brothers Plumbing are always here to help.

Clogged drains and running toilets are two of the leading causes of water damage in the home. Together, they are a destructive combination that can result in a very unsanitary mess in mere moments. Do yourself a favor and call Baker Brothers Plumbing. In emergency situations, we can be on the job in the same day, 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. In non-emergencies, we can schedule jobs within 24 – 48 hours.

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