While products labeled “flushable” are certainly enticing, the truth is that they don’t actually live up to their name. In fact, these so-called safe products actually pose potential threats to your home plumbing systems and beyond, as they can not only clog your toilet, they can cause wide-reaching issues for sewer systems overall.
Take the “flushable” wipe, for instance. Supporters have long been attracted to their claim on cleanliness, but these products have actually been under much scrutiny since they first hit the market about their harmful effects on septic and sewer systems. Sure, the wipes will break down in the sewer system eventually, but they take much longer than regular toilet paper.
These “flushable” products have caused such a stir that laws have actually been proposed in D.C. that take aim at their very label. But, while laws have yet to be passed, the real question you need to ask yourself is whether or not “flushable” products are even worth the hassle. In truth, it’s best to play it safe when it comes to maintaining your plumbing system. And, we recommend only flushing what your system was intended to handle – human waste and toilet paper.
Of course, “flushable” wipes aren’t the only culprit behind clogged drains, rather, they’re just one small contributor. Other common products that get flushed down the drain that shouldn’t include:
- Cotton swabs
- Cotton balls
- Facial wipes
- Sanitary items
- Dental floss
- Cigarette butts
By simply keeping these items and more out of your toilet, and throwing them into the trash can instead, you can easily avoid costly repairs.
How to Address Clogs
If you have been flushing “flushable” products down your pipes and have been faced with clogged lines or suspect a clog, then there are certain actions that you can and should take to correct the issue. But, don’t wait! Water back-up, gurgling drains, and running toilets are signs of a clogged line and should be taken care of as soon as possible to avoid potential disaster.
If the problem just seems to affect one drain, like your toilet, then you can try to unclog it with a plunger or drain snake. If, however, multiple drains in your home share the same symptoms, then it’s time to call in a professional. They’ll need to inspect your pipes with a camera to find the source of the issue before they can unclog it and check for further damage. It’s also worth noting that if you’re experiencing frequent clogs, this isn’t normal and must also be addressed by your trusty plumber.
So, if your home plumbing is being affected by clogged pipes due to suspected “flushable” products or is simply in need of routine service, give our team here at Tritan Plumbing a call. We’ll send a member of our team out to conduct a system-wide diagnostic assessment to determine if your clog is just a minor fix or the beginning of a greater problem and get your home back up and running in no time. And, don’t forget – when in doubt, toss it, don’t flush it!