6 Things You Should Never Flush Down the Toilet

man using plunger to unclog toilet

You may not think twice about flushing that pair of contact lenses or those “flushable” wipes down your toilet.

But did you know that repeated flushing of these items and other commonly used household items can lead to clogs or cause disruptions in wastewater treatment systems?

The sewer and drain cleaning pros at Reid & Pederson Drainage have put together a list of items you may not think would cause much trouble, but that you should never flush down your toilet.

1) Dental Floss

If you floss twice a day (as you should) throwing your used floss down the toilet every day can cause a buildup of the strings, leading to clogs and allowing other debris that is washed down the drain to get caught as well.

2) Medications

Old or expired medications should never be flushed down the toilet for risk of them entering the drinking water system. The best way to dispose of them is by checking to see if your community participates in a drug take back program. If not, you can call your local police and see if you can drop them off at the station.

3) Cigarette Butts

These should never be flushed down the toilet, as they are full of chemicals that can find a way into water sources and pollute them and harm fish and other wildlife. 

4) Gum

Gum is sticky. So flushing it down the toilet brings the risk of it sticking to your pipes. Not only the gum but other debris floating through the pipes can stick to it and cause larger clogs. Your best bet is to simply throw it in the garbage. 

5) Fish

It’s sad to lose your pet goldfish. But flushing him away isn’t the best idea, as dead fish and other carcasses are difficult to deal with at the water treatment plant. Your best bet is to give Goldie a proper burial in your backyard.

6) Cotton Swabs & Cotton Balls

Again, not a good idea to flush down your toilet. Cotton balls expand when in water and Q-tips can also get trapped in pipes.

Help from the Drain Clog Experts

The bottom line? When in doubt, throw it out! Save yourself the headache of dealing with a clog and make sure you only flush the three “Ps!” (We’re pretty sure we don’t have to tell you what those are!”).

Of course if you do find yourself with a clogged toilet, drain or sewer line, reach out to the Crete, IL drain and sewer cleaning experts at Reid & Pederson right away!

South Suburbs
NW Indiana

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