Never Flush These 20 Things Down the Toilet

Never Flush These 20 Things Down the Toilet

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You should flush down your toilet only three things: pee, poo, and toilet paper. Anything other than these items can cause significant issues for you and the wastewater treatment facility. Everything that enters your plumbing system goes into a septic tank to be pumped out later or sent through city lines to the local sewer.

There are various pipes that it must travel through to get to its destination, and these pipes include rods and filters that help protect the expensive equipment that processes it. Treatments stations have filters that remove items that you should not flush, including baby wipes, tampons, and hair.

When you send non-biodegradable items down the toilet, you risk damage to the plumbing in your home. Additionally, you add to water pollution in your community. Some people honestly don’t know that there are things that can’t go through these intricate systems. Sadly, others know it will not break down and send it through the tubes anyway.

The backups you might experience are more than just an inconvenience and expensive plumbing bill. Indeed, the resulting overflow may create unsanitary conditions that endanger well-being.

Twenty Things You Should Never Flush Down the Toilet

Everyone makes mistakes, and reading the list below, can help you make some changes. You should not dispose of these items through the plumbing system. Besides that, you should teach your children about the acceptable things to flush, too. Here are some things you should never put into your commode.


1. Don’t Flush Wet Wipes

These wet wipes found in most supermarkets are labeled as flushable. But if you read the fine print, it says only one can be sent through the tubes. Most people don’t use just one, and some older septic systems can’t handle that amount. These wipes are a plumber’s nightmare–and their ticket to high-cost repair jobs.

Wet wipes don’t break down like they should, and they clog septic systems across the globe. The River Thames in Barnes is polluted constantly with wet wipes that come to the surface. According to a report by the National History Museum in the UK, volunteers cleared over 23,000 of these wipes from the shore of the famous river in 2019 alone. Additionally, a study found that these “flushable” wipes cause ninety percent of all plumbing blockages.

2. Tampons or Maxi Pads Should Not Go Down the Toilet

Can you believe fifty percent of women think sending tampons down the toilet is okay?

Plumbers warn that some think the commode is an acceptable way to eliminate feminine hygiene products. None of the tampons or pads on the market should go through your plumbing system, and many boxes have warnings that state this on their packaging. You do not want to flood your bathroom or clog your pipes, so do not send a maxi pad through your system.

3. Please Do Not Flush Paper Towels

Many people turn to paper towels or coffee filters when they run out of toilet paper. The only problem is that these can’t disintegrate in your septic or wastewater systems. You can cause your system to clog quickly upon flushing, primarily if you use a large amount.

4. Condoms Don’t Go Down the Drain

The most significant issue with condoms is they’re non-biodegradable. No one wants these in their public waterways, and it’s better to toss them in the trash can.

5. Avoid Flushing Baby Wipes

Baby wipes have a warning right on them not to flush them down the commode. Yet, millions of people do it anyway, thinking they’re the same as toilet paper. They will undoubtedly cause a clog.

6. Do Not Flush Diapers

It’s shocking to put diapers on a list of things that might cause your house to flood if you send them into your plumbing system. Sadly, some folks try to drop these large items down the toilet. No part of a diaper should enter your septic system, and it’s a recipe for disaster sending it through your pipes.

7. Medications Can Poison the Water System

It seems simple enough to toss old medications into the bowl and give them the royal send-off, but you’re putting these prescriptions into your public water supply. Your local wastewater facility isn’t equipped to handle or purify water with them.

8. Don’t Flush Cigarette Butts

Cigarette butts are one of the most common litters in the United States. You find them on your street, at the city park, on the beach, and they even end up in your water system. The issue is that the butt comprises hundreds of toxins and cellulose acetate on the wrapping. Your local treatment facility isn’t equipped to handle these small items, and they contaminate your water.

9. Cotton Balls or Swabs

Cotton does break down a bit, but it’s not going to break down like regular tissue paper as it’s not biodegradable. Keep cotton swabs and balls out of your commode if you don’t want a flood in your bathroom.

10. Grease and Oil Can Cause Severe Clogging if You Flush Them

It seems sensible to send oil and grease through the septic system rather than your pipes, but these slimy substances can clog your drains quickly. Additionally, the fat solidifies and becomes hard as a rock. As a result, you risk severe damage to your plumbing pipes and water system.


11. Contact Lenses

The CDC estimates that over 45 million people in this country wear contact lenses, adding to a lot of plastic. Sadly, many people would rather flush these items than toss them in the bin. The real issue is that all these lenses going into the sewer system is responsible for one of today’s most significant environmental concerns, microplastics. While sending them down the commode seems tempting, throwing them in the trash is just as easy.

12. Cat Litter

It seems only natural that you would flush cat litter right down the tube. However, all septic water is purified at a local plant. Since cat feces and urine can have parasites like toxoplasma gondii, your local treatment facility isn’t equipped to handle such diseases. Besides that, the clumping clay that eliminates the mess from the litter box can create severe clogging–or even overflow or flood your toilet.

13. Don’t Flush Hair Down the Toilet

Hair doesn’t break down like toilet tissue and can cause all sorts of issues at the water treatment facility. Plus, it’s one of the most common reasons for clogs in your plumbing, so you can imagine what it does to your septic system.

14. Dental Floss

Dental floss is just a string, so it can’t cause too much damage, right? Sadly, dental floss is not an item that will break down. It’s made of Teflon or nylon, and it tangles much like hair in the septic system, which is a complete nightmare on the expensive processing equipment.

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