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  • Writer's pictureJolly Plumbing

No Toilet Paper? Be Careful What You Flush

Updated: Jan 11, 2021

Most homeowners know that there are certain items you simply cannot flush down the toilet and should stick only to toilet paper. Despite that knowledge, as the COVID-19 crisis grew larger and many people started hoarding toilet paper, the situation in your bathroom may have become more desperate. Of course, we are all guilty of flushing something we know shouldn’t be flushed on occasion, but it’s still good to be reminded of what products are okay to flush, and what products are not. Even if there is no toilet paper available, you are better off using some form of thin paper product than backing up the whole plumbing system and risking a small flood. Take a look at the list below for some common, and not so common items that should never be flushed down your toilet.


Even if the packaging says ‘flushable’ wipes of any kind are notorious for causing huge plumbing backups in homes across the country. Wipes are not made from a material that breaks up upon contact with water, at least not immediately. If enough of them get trapped in your plumbing it could create a serious clog.

Feminine Products

Products like pads and tampons should never be flushed down the toilet on account of one very simple thing: they absorb water. If you can imagine something traveling through the pipes of your home that continues to expand the more water it absorbs it becomes obvious why plumbers are dispatched so often to clear these types of products from plumbing lines. Though it may seem less sanitary, you are much better off throwing feminine products in the trash.


This is a big misconception people are fed from movies, tv shows, or even bad advice from friends. If you have old prescription medications or vitamins around don’t flush them down the toilet. Not only does standard toilet water not break down the tablets properly, but it can also actually get into the water supply and become dangerous in high enough quantities. If you have a medication that is expired or you are no longer using contact the physician that prescribed it to you so they can advise you on how to dispose of it.


Like other items on this list, hair is not water-soluble at all, meaning it will gather together in a clump and never dissolve. Next time you are shaving or trimming your hair, spread out a towel so that all the clippings fall onto the towel then you can throw everything away at once.


This is a product that has been used to clean bathrooms for decades because of its disinfectant qualities and the ability to get stains off of white surfaces. It may be your go-to product to clean the toilet, but you may be surprised to find out it’s actually extremely harsh on your home plumbing system and septic tank if you have one. Next time you are scrubbing and disinfecting the toilet, try to use an alternative product or regular white vinegar for cleaning.

If you have questions about proper toilet care or would like to schedule a service call give our team a call today!

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