To get the best performance from your toilet and to alleviate the possibility of a sewer backup, never flush anything other than standard toilet paper and human waste down the toilet. Thick toilet paper, wipes, tampons, diapers, paper towels, dental floss, kitty litter, cotton swab sticks, and other products advertised as “flushable” really aren’t. Flushing these are asking for trouble. Flushing these also means someone else is cleaning up the mess downstream.
Watch one of these short Seattle Public Utilities videos to see what happens when you flush garbage down the toilet. Make It A Straight Flush and Straight Flush.
In our experience, the majority of plugged toilet and sewer calls are the result of homeowners or guests flushing the above-named items down the toilet. Debris catches onto roots and imperfections on the inside of the side sewer line and causes a slow, clogged, or completely blocked sewer line.
It may take effort to change the habit of using your toilet as a garbage can, but this change in habit could save you many thousands of dollars in repairs. Place a plastic-lined container next to your toilet for these non-flushables and dispose of the contents in the garbage can.
Other commonly found flushed objects that cause clogs and backups are bath toys, toilet paper rolls, and soap bars. In particular, one of our customers found her toddler had thrown all of her makeup into the toilet and then tried to flush it all. Children often want to see what will happen when they flush something.
The toilet is a drain. See our Drain Cleaning and Repair page for more information on how to keep your drains running freely.
Cleaning the Toilet
- White vinegar is a natural and inexpensive cleaning agent. Pour some into the toilet bowl water and let it sit. Then scrub the bowl and flush. If extra power is needed, add baking soda to the vinegar in the toilet bowl.
- If you have marble or stone floors in the bathroom, avoid splashing vinegar on the floor.
Schedule your Raymark Plumbing & Sewer appointment today by calling (206) 440-9077 or complete our Contact form.