What Is Clogging up Our Sewer Systems?

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  1. Bathroom wipes

    These “moist towelettes” or as I like to call them “adult baby wipes” 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.

  2. Condoms

    They probably seem small and very similar to toilet tissue, but these latex prophylactics are like kryptonite for  tanks and sewage treatment plants.

  3. Cotton Balls & Swabs

    They’re just cotton, right? It might seem like these tiny bathroom tools would just get soggy and eventually break down in the watery pipeline, but they don’t. They eventually gather together in bends of the pipe, causing massive blockages.

  4. Prescription Medication

    Don’t need the rest of those pills? Many people feel like they’re doing the safe thing, keeping meds out of the wrong hands by flushing them, but it’s actually very dangerous. These drugs destroy bacteria, contaminate groundwater supplies, and can have terrible effects on wildlife downstream.

  5. Paper towels

    These are extremely wasteful and reuseable rags/napkins are much better. However, if you do use paper towels, know that they’re NOT designed to break down in water like toilet paper. Flushing them can cause BIG problems.

  6. Cigarette butts 

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

  7. Band-aids

    These are made from non-biodegradable plastic, which is terrible for the environment and can cause terrible clogs in the sewage system.

  8. Dental floss

    Despite feeling like string, dental floss is not biodegradable. Once flushed, it loves to wrap itself around other objects in the pipeline, making tiny clogs bigger in an instant.

  9. Fats, oil, and grease

    This is a tough one, and everyone has done it at one point, but cooking fats should NEVER go in the drain or garbage disposal. It seems like a liquid when it’s hot, but as soon as this grease hits the drain, it cools and congeals, becoming pipe-clogging wax. Scrape it into the trash, or, if it’s clean bacon fat, save it in a jar for reuse.

  10. Cat litter

    I can understand how this would seem ok — 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 be put down a toilet. Not to mention that cat waste contains toxins and parasites that shouldn’t be in our water system.

  11. Disposable diapers 

    just because there’s poop in it, doesn’t mean it belongs in the toilet. Diapers are made from toxic plastic that’s designed to expand when it comes in contact with water. In the slim chance you actually get it down the drain, it will instantly be caught in the u-bend, and cause a terrible back up.

This article was provided by:

Vince Singh

Manager at Clearly Plumbing and Drainage
Website: Clearly Plumbing and Drainage
Email: manager@clearlyplumbing.ca
Phone: 604-813-9170

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