“Don’t flush that!” If you’ve ever been the parent of a toddler or young child, that phrase has surely been uttered (or yelled) in your household at some point. Even if you’ve don’t have kids, some people think of “the can” as a magical trash can that permanently eliminates any type of material.
Obviously, this isn’t the case. Small, everyday items can damage not just your own plumbing, but they can also create problems for your neighborhood’s entire sewer system. But how can such small, seemingly insignificant objects do so much damage to a large plumbing network?
There are two main reasons that this can happen.
- First, many items don’t dissolve/disintegrate easily. Objects like baby wipes, bandages, cotton balls, dental floss or diapers will all remain in a sewer system for years if they aren’t flushed out. Over time and with enough households flushing these items, they can build up and cause backups or other complications in city plumbing.
- Secondly, if a scrap or even a tiny piece of non-dissolvable material gets caught on a nick, bump or bend in a pipe, it can lead to a growth of buildup and massive problems for the plumbing system. Since it doesn’t dissolve, the problem will just keep getting worse.
You can prevent problems like these by following one simple rule – only use your toilet to flush toilet paper or organic waste material. Everything else such as medication, grease or any other types of material should go in the wastebasket.