Not All Things Are Flushable:
With the recent toilet paper shortage, people are coming up with alternative methods for “wiping”. Some consumers have chosen tissues while others are using paper towel, napkins or even baby wipes. Well, it is important to know that not all things are considered “flushable” even if they are advertised to be.
Why All Paper Products Are NOT Created Equally:
Toilet paper is specifically made to disintegrate and break up when wet. This makes it much easier to go throw your pipes and the sewer system without clogging things up (with some exceptions). One may think that similar products such as tissue is a great substitute to toilet paper since it is equally soft. However, tissue is designed to stay intact longer and does not easily break up like toilet paper does. This goes for paper towels and even “flushable” wipes! Advertisers would like you to believe that their nicely scented wet wipes are made for sewer or septic systems, but public works departments in multiple states have stated otherwise. To further prove this point, an article from Texas reminds residents that wipes are not flushable and Florida public works has also urged residents to not flush paper towels or wipes down the toilet.
What Happens When You Flush Wipes?
As we all know, COVID-19 has caused much worse chaos than just the toilet paper shortage. The last thing people need right now is a plumbing disaster on top of this world epidemic! When paper products besides toilet paper are flushed into the sewer system, it will inevitably clog the lines which can lead to property damage and other catastrophes. If you own an older home in Henderson, your pipes are much more susceptible to these clogs. If you live in an apartment/condo, you may share a drain line with your neighbor which means you can even clog their lines (and they can also clog yours). It is important to realize that flushing tissue or paper towel can also clog up drain systems in newer single-family homes though less common. So regardless of the age of your pipes, you should only be flushing toilet paper into your toilets or you will need a licensed plumber to perform drain cleaning or possibly hydro-jetting to clear the line.
Alternatives to Flushing Wipes:
Right now, times are tough and people are hoarding toilet paper like it’s the diarrhea epidemic. So, if you have to use tissue or God forbid harsh paper towels, then so be it! Just do not flush them down the toilet. Please properly dispose of them in a sealed trash can or bag. Another option you have is to hire a plumber to install a bidet or purchase your own bidet seat.
Regardless of how you’re dealing with this, it is imperative to listen to the plumbing professionals who have seen what damage “flushable” wipes can do. Please take precautions by disposing of paper products in a proper way and it will save you from having a plumbing emergency on top of a toilet paper crisis!