by Lambert Plumbing and Heating in Vancouver on April 15, 2016

Flushing Wipes Will Clog Your Drains

Disposable Wet Wipes are great to have on hand for wiping sticky hands, changing diapers or cleaning off a sudden splash of dirt. Most people think nothing of flushing away these convenient cloths in the toilet.

After all, they are clearly marked as being disposable. The term disposable can be very misleading. For people that try to do the right thing in keeping our planet healthy and our septic systems, as well, a play with words can make a big difference.

Why DIY Wet Wipes are not Flushable

Vancouver, BC diy-wet-wipes-1Actually, many types of toilet paper should not be referred to as flushable. We all like that smell good feature that makes us associate toilet paper with fresh, but those lotions and oils are responsible for keeping toilet paper from breaking down when flushed.

The same applies to making your own wet wipes and disposing of down the toilet. If you are considering making DIY Wet Wipes as a quick and flushable cleaner, keep these facts in mind:

  • Very few brands of paper towels are biodegradable
  • Most oils and perfumes are made from chemicals from
  • Dish Soaps contain toxins, preventing biodegradable process

What Does Biodegradable Actually Mean?

A biodegradable product uses natural resources in manufacturing instead of binding chemicals that prevent decomposition. There is a very complex balance in creating a paper product that will stay intact while in use, but will decompose when introduced back into the soil or water.

If a package of paper towels, for instance, is not marked as biodegradable, it has been treated with chemicals to add strength to the material. Changing the structure of the molecules and reinforcing with manmade chemicals can confuse the acceptance of the paper back into nature.

To further complicate matters, not all biodegradable materials should be considered flushable. A biodegradable paper towel has the ability to break down in 2-4 days, but this is not always quick enough when flushed down a drain. A drain cleaning specialist will often find pieces of paper towels trapped in a wad when clearing the drain lines.

What is Wrong with Dish Soap when Making Wet Ones?

Dish soap has become new and improved over the years to help cut great and to keep hands from drying out. The chemicals used to create these properties takes away from the chemical-free aspect of liquid soap. Even when marked as natural or biodegradable, closer inspection needs to be made. Check the label of ingredients for these toxic additives:

  • Phlathate
  • Glycol
  • Phosphate
  • Dioxane
  • Methylisothiazolinone

Any time that an unnatural substance is introduced into a natural decomposing product, it removes the ability to break down and return to nature.

The Best Way to Protect your Toilet from Paper Damage

Never trust the labels on toilet paper, tissues or paper towels to ensure that a particular brand is flushable. Perform your own test by swishing a piece around in a bucket of water. It should only take a few minutes for the paper to disintegrate completely. If pieces remain, imagine what is taking place inside the drain. It is no wonder that toilet repair to remove obstructions is so often needed. Here are a list of items that people think little of flushing that should never be done:

  • Cigarette Butts
  • Cotton Balls
  • Tampons
  • Dental Floss

Vancouver, BC diy-wet-wipes-2These are in addition to baby wipes, paper towels and hair from a brush.

It seems as though there are very few items that should be introduced into our sewage systems anymore. However, this is the price that is paid for wanting more durable, softer, and better scented paper products. Ask any toilet repair company and they will verify these findings.

Are there any DIY Wet Wipes that are Flushable?

There are paper towels for making wet wipes on the market that claim to be earth friendly, but this does mean that they are flushable. They may be made of recyclable paper or contain less chemicals, but they do not break down in water.

Give it the water test and see for yourself. No paper towel on the market is made for decomposition and should never be flushed down a toilet.

However, DIY Wet Wipes are a cost-saving way to battle the high price of ready-made dampened cloths. Just remember to toss them in a trash reciprocal after use. They will eventually break down in the soil and not cause the need for drain cleaning.

No matter how safe you try to be with items being flushed down the toilet, it happens. If you find yourself in need of a drain cleaning company in , call Lambert Plumbing and Heating Ltd at (604) 734-0890 and use these tips to limit toilet repair in your Vancouver, BC home.

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