There are a number of things that some homeowners flush down the toilet that they shouldn’t.

After you floss, just throw the used dental floss in the trash.

Tossing inappropriate items down the loo can cause serious plumbing issues and, as such, homeowners should reconsider their actions and dispose of these items correctly.

Keep in mind that flushing anything that isn’t created by your body’s digestive system should not be flushed down the toilet, since one flush on a regular flow toilet wastes 12 litres of water.

1. Floss

Dental floss isn’t biodegradable, and while one small piece of floss may not seem like much, just think about what happens when a bunch of it gets tangled together. Enter bad visual of plaque-laden strings combining together to create one monster floss glob flowing through your sewer pipes. So after you floss (and good on you for flossing, by the way), just throw your dental floss in the trash.

Grease, oil and fats may go in as a liquid, but sooner or later they will cool and build up on the sides of your pipes, and over time will make the pipe opening smaller and smaller – exactly like a clogged artery.

2. Grease, oil and fat

Better yet, any food at all. If it’s designed to be eaten by you, let your body process it before it ends up in the toilet.

Grease, oil and fats may go in as a liquid, but sooner or later they will cool and build up on the sides of your pipes, and over time will make the pipe opening smaller and smaller – exactly like a clogged artery.  

Eventually, the pipe will clog so badly that it will back up, or worse. That’s why restaurants have grease disposal services as you can’t dump oil down a sink.

Keep a zippered bag close by in the kitchen and pour any oil, grease or fat into the bag. When the bag is full, throw it away. That way it won’t smell either.

3. Band aids

Most band aids are made from plastic, which isn’t even close to biodegradable.

Tossing these down the toilet can cause blockages, so it’s best to just put your used band aids in the trash. Don’t flush cloth bandages either.

Tossing band aids down the toilet can cause blockages, so it’s best to just put your used band aids in the trash.

4. Wet wipes

These moist towelettes are becoming an increasingly popular bathroom accessory. Despite the fact that they’re marketed to be flushed like toilet paper, these wipes are creating clogs and backups in sewer systems around the nation. Same thing goes for actual baby wipes and cleaning wipes.

5. Sanitary pads

There’s a good reason why restaurants, malls and public bathrooms have signs telling you not to flush feminine hygiene products down the toilet. And they’ll provide you with a little courtesy bin for safe disposal.

So why don’t they flush? Well, these products are inherently designed to absorb moisture and expand. The expansion makes them difficult to pass through pipes and sewers. This also applies to cotton balls and cotton swabs. Just wrap them up and dispose them in the trash.

6. Condoms

Hair clogs shower, sink and toilet plumbing. Like dental floss, it forms giant balls that trap odours and create massive blockages in pipes, plumbing and sewers. In fact, hair clogs more drains than arguably anything else on this list.

Don’t ever flush condoms down the toilet as these latex prophylactics are like kryptonite for septic tanks and sewage treatment plants.

Discreetly wrap them up in toilet paper (condom and wrapper) and throw them away in the trash.

7. Hair

Just because this forms part of your body doesn’t mean it can be safely flushed down the toilet. 

Hair clogs shower, sink and toilet plumbing. Like dental floss, it forms giant balls that trap odours and create massive blockages in pipes, plumbing and sewers. In fact, hair clogs more drains than arguably anything else on this list.

When cleaning your brushes or combing wet hair, just throw your hair into the garbage, or you can even compost it.

8. Diapers

In the unlikely case that you actually get the diaper to flush, it will probably get caught in the U-bend of the pipe and cause a terrible back up.

Just because there is human waste inside the diapers, it doesn’t mean that it’s okay to flush them down the toilet.

Diapers are made from toxic plastic which expands in water. In the unlikely case that you actually get the diaper to flush, it will probably get caught in the U-bend of the pipe and cause a terrible back up.

9. Cat litter

I can understand how this would seem okay – it’s just the cat’s poop and pee, right? But cat litter is made from clay and sand, two things that you should never pour down a toilet. Not to mention that cat waste contains toxins and parasites that shouldn’t be in our water system.

10. Cigarette butts

Not only do they look nasty when floating in the toilet water, they’re full of toxic chemicals that end up in the ground water supply. Also, think of all the water you’re wasting just to get rid of one tiny butt.

Even thick, plush toilet paper can sometimes be hard to break down. A courtesy flush is sometimes necessary to avoid clogging the drain, but be conservative with your toilet paper use.

Don’t think that you are saving water or money by stuffing as much waste into the toilet before you actually flush.

Having a plumber drive to your house to fix an expensive problem is much worse – for your wallet and the environment. On average, a call out to unblock a drain can cost anything from R550 to R1 200. To reinstall or redo part or your drainage system can cost up to R600 per meter of new drainage.

Despite all the precautions you take, you may still experience plumbing problems. Things just happen sometimes, so always have your plumber’s contact details close by to avoid an embarrassing situation at home.

Article source: Property 24