24 Things You Should Not Flush Down The Toilet


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Chances are that at your house you have running water, flushing toilets, and either a septic tank or city sewer to deal with the waste you produce. We don’t think about these things too much, taking them for granted until there is a problem with one or more of them. Often the problem is caused by something that could have been easily avoided, and one of the biggest culprits in plumbing problems is people using their toilet as a trash can.

Using a toilet to dispose of trash is bad for many reasons: clogged toilets that require plumbers or replacement, damaged wastewater treatment centers (the cost of which gets passed on to utility customers), expensive cleanups, a waste of fresh water (up to 3 gallons per flush), higher water and utility bills, septic tanks and leaching fields that don’t work correctly, toxic environmental issues, and raw sewage overflows. The list goes on and on… and on. To help you avoid causing most all of them and keep your toilet flushing correctly, here’s a list of things you should not flush down the toilet. Ever.

Band-Aids – Made out of non-biodegradable plastic. Toss them in the trash.
Condoms – Bad news for septic tanks and sewage treatment plants. Condoms gum up the works.
Cotton Balls & Q-Tips – Contrary to popular opinion, these don’t magically break down once flushed. They gather together, eventually clogging pipes.
Food – Compost or trash it. Food can clump together and cause clogs.
Facial Cleaning Pads – Thicker than toilet paper and thus can cause problems.
Dental Floss – NOT biodegradable. Will wrap around small clogs to make them even bigger.
Hair – Clogs pipes in no time. You know how you constantly have to unclog your drain because of the hair in it? Imagine that, but on a much larger scale.
Dirt – Dump it outside, not in the toilet.
Dryer Sheets – Made out of synthetic materials, not biodegradable.
Prescription Medicines – Destroys bacteria and contaminates groundwater. Bring meds back to pharmacies for disposal.
Grease & Fat – Congeals once it cools down, filling pipes with a solid mass that blocks pipes.
Pesticides – Destroys the good bacteria used to break down waste at treatment plants.

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  1. Jeez. People actually put cat litter down their toilet?! It’s sad how people don’t even bother to learn this stuff. Today’s community truly lives by “Out of sight, out of mind”.
    I have an eco-blog myself, and every day I am reminded of how much we waste, and that people need to care more.

  2. Can someone help me accidentally flush a make up cot ton pad in the toilet connected in the septic tank once .is this cause a problem ?

  3. What about dumping your cup of dip spit and dip down the toilet? Is that going to cause any harm down the line with our septic tank?

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