Choates Clogged Toilet Don't Flush

Never Flush These 8 Things Down the Toilet

what not to put down the toilet
It’s easy to forget toilets are designed to handle very specific tasks—and flushing anything other than what’s intended can lead to clogs or worse. These seven common items are, also, some of the most common clog-causers. Our advice? NEVER let them down your toilet or drains.

Too Much Toilet Paper

Yes, toilet paper belongs in the toilet—but to a point. Use a reasonable amount of TP and your plumbing will be fine. But if you start tossing excessive amounts into the bowl, chances are you’re going to not only wind up with a quick-fix clog but, over time, some serious issues.

If you need to use a little extra from time to time, be sure you’re flushing before tossing more toilet paper into the bowl. That goes extra if you’re using ultra-thick, “plush” toilet paper—the thicker the paper, the less you should be flushing at a time. Worst still, the longer time it takes to dissolve, meaning a clog could keep impacting your toilet flow. It’s easy to forget toilets are designed to handle very specific tasks—and flushing anything other than what’s intended can lead to clogs or worse. These seven common items are, also, some of the most common clog-causers. Our advice? NEVER let them down your toilet or drains.

Paper Towels

These are one of the most common sources of clogs. Many people consider them to be in the same category as toilet paper—but they aren’t. Unlike toilet paper, paper towels are not designed to break down when they get wet. In fact, most are designed for the exact opposite purpose—to stay strong when mopping up liquid messes. While that’s great for cleaning, it also makes paper towels a nightmare for your plumbing.

Medicine

Flushing old or unwanted medication down the toilet can, again, seem like a simple way to safely dispose of potentially dangerous or expired pills, capsules and tablets—but doing this often causes more harm than good. These medications can seep into waterways and enter the systems of fish and other creatures, causing major damage along the way.

Wipes

While many baby wipes and personal hygiene wipes say “flushable” on the package, they’re actually not flushable at all. These wipes don’t break down when wet. The proof? They’re wet inside the package, and they don’t break down, even after months or years—same when you flush them. These are one of the most common causes of plumbing blockages we see.
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Cigarettes

Flushing cigarette butts might seem like the safest way to make sure they’re fully out, but those cigarette butts ultimately end up in the water, contaminating rivers and lakes as well as the environment. They can also do damage closer to home, clogging up your toilet in less time than you’d imagine.

Grease, Oil, and Fat

Have you ever left grease sitting on the counter for a few hours before cleaning it? Notice how it congeals and turns into a solid, mucky paste. That’s what can happen when you flush grease, oil, and fat down the drain. Not only can this damage the public water system, they can also cause blockages and clogs within your home’s plumbing and lead to disaster.

Fish and Other Deceased Pets

We’ve seen it in too many movies and cartoons to count—the beloved goldfish’s “burial at sea” via the toilet. Unfortunately, flushing fish and other dead pets is a recipe for a major clog. You should also consider that most fish die from disease or parasites, and flushing them into the public water system can spread that disease or parasite to other aquatic life.

Cat Litter

We get it—this type of waste does typically go in the toilet safely. The challenge? Cat litter comes with some unpleasant chemicals that can cause damage. Not to mention that cat litter is designed specifically to clump when it comes into contact with moisture. With all the moisture in your pipes, it’s all but guaranteed to clump up and cause clogs.

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