When in Doubt, Use the Trash Can
Sometimes flushing seems like the easiest alternative to getting rid of waste, especially if you’re standing closer to the toilet than to the trashcan. In the kitchen, dumping things into the garbage disposal is often the go to choice. You can dump any liquids down your sink to avoid messes in your trash can and smells, right? Wrong. The truth is, there are many items that are better kept in the trashcan to avoid plumbing and drain cleaning issues.
In the Sink
The most common problematic substance that people dump down their garbage disposals is grease. When you fry bacon in a pan, you probably let the pan sit in the sink with soapy water gathering inside. The next time you do the dishes, it’s easy to slosh the water out of the pan and clean it. However, this grease that you now spilled down the drain will coat the pipes and could eventually lead to blockage or break the disposal. Instead, wipe your pans out with a paper towel and throw it in the trash. If you are worried about odor, take the trash out right away! It is far more convenient than calling a plumber.
In Your Toilet
Paper towels are a big culprit in clogged toilets. People assume that just because they get softer and soggy in water, they will eventually break down. This is not entirely true. Think about all of the commercials you have seen that advertise the strength of paper towels. If one sheet can wipe up a puddle of water or sauce in one swipe, it most definitely will not deteriorate in a cup of water. Instead, the soggy mess will pile up somewhere on its way to the sewer and cause a blockage.
Some other common items that people flush are cotton swabs and baby wipes (or moist towelettes). Again, people assume that just because they get mushy when wet, they will completely dissolve. Like paper towels, these items will clog up drains. Worst of all, if you flush them repeatedly they will stick together in the same spot and cause a blockage quickly.
Call a Plumber
If you are finding this information out after the fact, you are probably in some sort of plumbing crises. Remember to follow the preceding rules and take care of water you send down a pipe. However, if it’s too late, there are plenty of professional plumbers near you that can help you out when you are in a pinch. For instanceMr. Rooter provides 24 plumbing emergency service to cities like Minneapolis, St. Paul, and more. With some quick online searches, you can find a plumber in your area that can quickly help with your needs.
If you aren’t sure if you can flush something- look it up! You might be surprised by some items that you aren’t supposed to put in your toilet or garbage disposal. The time it takes to do a search is much less than the hassle you will have to go through to find and call a professional.