5 Things You Should Never Flush Down Your Toilet

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Are you guilty of using your toilet as a trash can? Everyone has done it at least once. You’re in a hurry, the trashcan is overflowing, and you figure that flushing whatever you have on hand down the toilet is as quick and efficient as throwing it out. However, that rarely, if ever, is the actual case. 

Toilets are only equipped to handle dissolvable toilet paper and waste. Flushing something that’s too big for your pipes or that won’t dissolve puts you and your family at risk of needing a septic system pumping in Radnor, West Chester, Newtown Square and beyond. Ensure that you and your family members know never to flush any of the following down the toilet!  

Here are five of the most common non-flushable things that get sent flush down your drains and can potentially cause more significant headaches down the road:


Infographic outlining things that should not be lushed down a toilet

Feminine Hygiene Products 

Flushing your used feminine hygiene products down the drain appears on the surface to be an excellent time-saver. You flush them down and don’t have to worry about throwing them away in the trash. However, that is not the best move for your pipes and drainage system. 

Tampons, menstrual pads, and other feminine hygiene products aren’t biodegradable, meaning they can easily get caught in your toilet’s pipes and seriously clog your toilet. Always wrap used feminine products in toilet paper and dispose of them in the trash can.

Cooking Grease

Just like how you should never pour cooking grease down your kitchen sink, you shouldn’t flush it down your toilet either. Cooking grease can congeal and turn into a thick gel when mixed with water, combining with other types of waste to create a severe clog that requires professional septic system pumping. The congealed grease quickly becomes a more significant and expensive issue that could have been avoided with proper grease management procedures in place.  

Dental Floss

When it comes to your dental care routines, most of your used excess can go down the drain. Mouthwash, toothpaste, and the like are all biodegradable and can safely be flushed without worrying about potential clogging. However, dental floss is another story entirely. 

Dental floss isn’t biodegradable and can wrap around other types of waste in your drain. The resulting clogs require the expertise and services of an experienced sewer maintenance company.  

Q-Tips

You might think that you can flush Q-tips down the toilet because they’re lined with cotton. Cotton is water-soluble and will dissolve once it’s flushed, right? Unfortunately, that’s not entirely accurate. While the tips of your cotton swabs might be able to be flushed, the plastic part of the Q-tip will clump together and clog your toilet. Enough plastic swabs get flushed down your toilet, and the resulting clog can cause massive disruptions in your home. 

Prescription Pills

If you have excess prescription pills or painkillers, you might think that you’re doing the responsible thing by flushing them down the toilet — plus, doing so can be a cathartic feeling. However, that feeling of catharsis may come back to haunt you later, as prescription medication and pills can have extremely detrimental effects on the environment. As the capsules dissolve, their effects can get into the water supply, potentially travel to different homes, and cause serious side effects. Fortunately, you have options for disposing of your unwanted pills safely and not by throwing them into the garbage. The DEA holds an annual “National Take-Back Day” each year when you can safely and responsibly dispose of your medications.

Are you dealing with a tough clog in your home? Delaware Valley Septic, Sewer & Storm can help you eliminate clogs with septic system pumping, available in Villanova, Gladwyne, Glen Mills and surrounding areas. Give our team a call today for more information or to schedule your appointment.