What Should I Not Flush Down My Toilet?
There comes a time in every homeowner’s life when they question what can and cannot be flushed down their toilet. While your “throne” is only intended for bodily waste and toilet paper, there are times when other objects can enter the bowl and cause a massive clog in the long run.
Before taking a chance with your home’s plumbing, here are 15 items to steer clear of:
15 Items to Never Flush Down Your Toilet
One of the most dangerous things you can pour down your toilet is bleach. This cleaning agent can react with other items lingering within your plumbing and create hazardous fumes.
While your child may think it’s a kind gesture to flush their goldfish down the toilet after it passes away, it’s actually one of the worst things they can do for your plumbing. Believe it or not, the fish cause a clog within a matter of seconds.
Whether they go by the name “flushable wipes” or “cleansing wipes,” these products are all a huge “no-no” for flushing down your toilet — they don’t break down and can cause a massive blockage.
4. Kitty Litter
Believe it or not, it’s never a good idea to flush your cat’s litter box down the toilet. As it turns out, all cat litter — even if it claims to be “flushable” — isn’t safe for your plumbing; the little beads will not dissolve and can stick around for quite some time in a pipe.
5. Paper Products
From tissues to paper towels, steer clear of flushing these objects down your toilet. Although they carry the name “paper,” they will not break down within your “throne” and can cause a massive clog.
6. Feminine Hygiene Products
It’s a rather dangerous idea to dispose of feminine hygiene products, such as tampons, down your toilet. These items, just like “flushable wipes,” will have a hard time breaking down and can create a pretty severe obstruction.
Whatever you do, make sure to never flush your child’s diaper down the toilet. Diapers expand when submerged in water so they’ll create a severe clog that even a toilet plunger won’t be able to handle.
8. Cotton Products
From cotton swabs to cotton balls, don’t think about disposing of them anywhere other than your garbage can. Like diapers, cotton is known to absorb water and will create a chaotic clog in your commode over time.
9. Male Contraceptive
Regardless of what material they’re made from, condoms should always be disposed of in a nearby trash can — never down your toilet.
10. Dental Floss
Repeat after us: Never flush dental floss down the toilet. Sure, this dental tool may seem rather harmless to toss down your “throne,” but the fibrous material doesn’t break down easily.
Whether it’s the wrapper around a new bottle of mouthwash or the packaging for a bandage, plastic cannot dissolve and may linger longer than you thought it would.
12. Chewing Gum
You know very well how sticky gum is when it’s slapped to the underside of a table or chair — well, the same applies when it's flushed down your toilet; it can cling to the inside of the pipe.
Although it may seem harmless to toss your leftover dinner scraps down the toilet, don’t even consider it. Instead, keep your toilet free from the havoc and dispose of those tidbits into a nearby garbage can.
It’s extremely dangerous to flush pills and other medications down your toilet. Sure, they’ll travel through the pipes without a problem, but their ingredients can migrate into sewer systems and do the unthinkable. Instead, please bring them to your local medical take-back program where they’ll adequately dispose of them.
Let’s face it: hair can cause a pretty significant clog in your toilet. Even though it seems as if the strands will break up and flow freely, that’s seldom the case. To avoid a plumbing nightmare on your hands, toss out any hair strands or clippings into a nearby garbage can.
Bonus: Disposable Mop Refill Pads
One of the most popular cleaning tools found in many homes across the nation are mops with flat, disposable pads. As intended, these are made to clean your floors and be thrown out in the trash — not flushed down your toilet. Just keep in mind: when in doubt, toss them out!