The modern world has so many conveniences, and the toilet is certainly a favorite. It is such an important convenience that we kind of forget that it isn’t magic. The things you flush down the toilet have to make their way down the drain and out your sewer system. Certain objects, materials and even foods can create problems for your plumbing system. Here are nine things you should never flush down the toilet.
1. Feminine Hygiene Products
Tell all the young ladies of your house that pads and even tampons are not flushable and can create serious clogs. To make the process easier on them and any female guests you have, ensure you have a closable garbage bin right next to the toilet.
2. Flushable Wipes
We know, it says flushable right in the name! However, the marketers behind these products are not plumbers. Flushable wipes are tough, non-biodegradable and even cling to other waste. They can create serious clogs.
If you absolutely have to use flushable wipes and put them down the toilet, at least try to do it sparingly to limit the odds they will create a clog.
3. Makeup Products
There are a handful of makeup products you might be tempted to flush, such as Q-tips, face wipes, applicator sponges and fake eyelashes. While they may seem small and harmless, these products can all cause clogs in your plumbing.
4. Food Scraps
It’s true, the occasional vomit will go down the toilet just fine, and there are few other places you’d want to put it. But regularly putting food scraps down is a bad idea. These particles will be completely undigested and are therefore more likely to create problems for your toilet. This goes double for gums, peels, oils, grease and starchy foods like potatoes.
5. Personal Care Products
When you use personal care products, you’re in the bathroom, so it may feel logical to toss them into the toilet, but it’s a bad idea. Cotton balls, band-aids, floss, baby wipes, diapers, contact lenses, and other items can create or contribute to clogs.
Protect your pipes, and don’t pour any kind of chemical down the toilet, including bleach. You might be trying to dispose of the items, or you might be trying to clear up a clog, but either way, the bleach can actually erode your pipes and create clogs by peeling off the grime from the pipes.
7. Cleaning Products
Melamine pads, toilet scrub pads, paper towels and other cleaning products do not belong in the toilet. Or, at least, they shouldn’t be flushed down it. You can still use them to clean the bowl.
8. Pet Products
If you can train your dog or your cat to go in the toilet, kudos to you. Otherwise, no pet products should be headed down the toilet. This includes kitty litter, which could be a major source of clogs and has ammonia which can damage pipes.
While your toilet may technically be able to handle flushing excess medications, it’s very bad the water supply. Please dispose of these properly, as your municipality instructs.