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Can Flushable Wipes Damage My Plumbing?

Can Flushable Wipes Damage My Plumbing?

Flushable wipes are a great alternative to toilet paper, and it's easy to see why they've become so popular. These wipes are marketed as "flushable" and "septic-safe." But are they actually flushable? Can they damage your plumbing?

Even though flushable wipes are marketed as "septic-safe," it’s never advisable to flush them down the toilet. These wipes take a much longer time to break down as they are made of synthetic materials which are held together by non-degradable materials. Over time, they collect in sewer pipes causing clogs and backups. If you've been wondering if flushable wipes can damage your plumbing, the answer is YES. Your plumbing system is not designed to handle flushable wipes. The only things you should flush down your toilet are human waste and toilet paper.

How Flushable Wipes Can Damage Your Plumbing

  1. Slow Breakdown: As we’ve already mentioned, flushable wipes do not disintegrate like tissue paper because they are made with synthetic materials, plastics, or polyester. Although they will go down the toilet just fine, problems come when these wipes move through your sewer system. When flushable wipes accumulate in your plumbing, they can cause clogs, backups, and blockages.
  2. They’re More Likely To Create A Fatberg: A fatberg is formed when a mass of solid waste collects in a sewer system and ends up blocking sewer lines. Fatbergs form when flushable wipes combine with things like grease, oil, dental floss, fat, and dirt to create an iceberg-like formation. If not prevented, fatbergs can cause serious blockages and lead to costly plumbing repairs.  
  3. Sewer System Damage: Even if flushable wipes make it through drain lines without causing problems, they can cause blockages in the septic tank. Since they don’t break apart easily, flushable wipes may accumulate in the septic tank leading to a backed-up sewer system and costly repairs. In addition, the accumulation of flushable wipes can interfere with the natural bacteria in the septic tank, thereby compromising the natural breakdown of solid waste.

What Else Should You Avoid Flushing Down The Toilet?

Avoid flushing the following items down the toilet:

  • Paper towels
  • Condoms
  • Dental floss
  • Tampons and pads
  • Cotton swabs
  • Diapers
  • Contact lenses
  • Cigarette butts
  • Hair
  • Bleach
  • Cat litter
  • Chewing gum
  • Bandages
  • Nail clippings
  • Foodstuffs

Bottom Line

While most manufacturers claim that flushable wipes are safe for your plumbing system, it has been proven that these wipes take a much longer time to disintegrate. It's best to avoid flushing flushable wipes down your toilet to prevent clogs and sewer system damage. If you have an issue caused by flushable wipes and need the help of knowledgeable and qualified plumbers, call Mr. Rooter Plumbing for assistance.

Contact Mr. Rooter Plumbing For All Of Your Plumbing Needs

When you're in need of a reliable plumbing service to help you with your plumbing needs, you can count on Mr. Rooter Plumbing to provide you with efficient and cost-effective plumbing services. Our plumbers have the knowledge, experience, and state-of-the-art tools to handle a wide range of plumbing services, including drain cleaning, water line repair, clogged toilet fix, and many more.