Don't flush those wipes!

seriously. Extenuating circumstances. (But we maybe could have agreed to it with a lot less detail!)


I can attest that wipes can be a problem in household plumbing... with a recent $425 bill for snaking lines in house and then to street (it’s a very long line). Plumber said in MAPSOWO area it’s often households with kids and/or folks who use lots of wipes for cleaning bathroom counters etc and then flush many of them down that’s a problem.


peteglider said:
I can attest that wipes can be a problem in household plumbing... with a recent $425 bill for snaking lines in house and then to street (it’s a very long line). Plumber said in MAPSOWO area it’s often households with kids and/or folks who use lots of wipes for cleaning bathroom counters etc and then flush many of them down that’s a problem.

 Relative had their sewer line back up on a major holiday due to personal wipes.  You don’t want to know what it costs to have a plumber come out on a holiday.  They’re totally justified in their pricing, they want to be home with their families too, I’m not bashing the industry.  Relative still uses wipes but now places them in the trash


Never flush wipes, even if they say flushable.


yahooyahoo said:
Never flush wipes, even if they say flushable.

 Truer words....

But the problem is, what percentage of wipes users know this? I bet it's less than 10%. Maybe way less. Not enough to make a difference. (which is my general criticism of personal choices vis à vis pollution)

It's time for some forward thinking politician to stick in an innocuous amendment somewhere to force manufacturers to stop claiming they're flushable.


There used to be a thread called "Threads You Wish You'd Never Opened." 

Unfortunately it was archived so I can't add to it.

 zipper 


I thought wipes would just clog your pipes, and once they hit the main sewer then it was ok.  But apparently this is not the case.  The picture drummer boy posted above was from an article about wipes clogging up city sewers and how workers had to scuba dive through 80+ feet of raw sewage to reach the clog and pull it out by hand.  These workers need to be sprayed down with bleach before they can even think about removing their scuba gear. Some US cities are trying to sue “flushable” wipes manufacturers because the problem is becoming very expensive.   In some places the problem has become so bad that city sewer workers set up sewer traps so they can tell which homes the wipes are coming from so they can take action 


the sewer police are headed to your home! 

Some new plumbing fixtures and newer sewer systems might be better able to handle wipes. I do think packaging is confusing to say the least, however, and warnings should be clear. 

“If in doubt, throw it out!” Don’t flush!


mtierney said:
the sewer police are headed to your home! 
Some new plumbing fixtures and newer sewer systems might be better able to handle wipes. I do think packaging is confusing to say the least, however, and warnings should be clear. 
“If in doubt, throw it out!” Don’t flush!

 The issue isn’t solely with your household plumbing, it is also with the infrastructure.  These things are getting stuck in main sewer lines.  So people who don’t even use these can end up with sewage back ups when a main gets clogged 


Actually, it has very little to do with your household plumbing, which can easily handle a wipe or two per flush. It's the municipal sewer systems that are at risk. Which is kind of a big deal. We're used to those systems running smoothly and pretty much invisibly, but they're as essential to our way of life as just about anything. It's no joke.


I have to ask:  why are the wipes different than all the other synthetic things that go down the toilet?   I did some work at a sewer treatment plant in Brooklyn some years ago and was amazed to see the elaborate screening system and the volume of stuff it collected.   


Red_Barchetta said:
I have to ask:  why are the wipes different than all the other synthetic things that go down the toilet?   I did some work at a sewer treatment plant in Brooklyn some years ago and was amazed to see the elaborate screening system and the volume of stuff it collected.   

 Unless you’re eating some weird stuff there shouldn’t be anything synthetic going in a toilet 


Only the Three P’s should be going in a toilet, pee, poop, and paper


spontaneous said:
 Unless you’re eating some weird stuff there shouldn’t be anything synthetic going in a toilet 


Only the Three P’s should be going in a toilet, pee, poop, and paper

 You know that and I know that.  I can get graphic if you want, but suffice it to say that plenty of people don't or don't care.  My question stands.  Why are wipes different?  Could it be that treatment plants need to jigger their systems to accommodate these wipes?


Red_Barchetta said:


spontaneous said:
 Unless you’re eating some weird stuff there shouldn’t be anything synthetic going in a toilet 


Only the Three P’s should be going in a toilet, pee, poop, and paper
 You know that and I know that.  I can get graphic if you want, but suffice it to say that plenty of people don't or don't care.  My question stands.  Why are wipes different?  Could it be that treatment plants need to jigger their systems to accommodate these wipes?

 I now own a home with a septic tank.  I was present for the home inspection.  I’ve seen some of the things people throw down their toilet.  


Anything foreign being thrown down a toilet is bad for the infrastructure.  The issue with wipes is that they’re being heavily marketed so their use is increasing at an exponential rate 


spontaneous said:
 I now own a home with a septic tank.  I was present for the home inspection.  I’ve seen some of the things people throw down their toilet.  


Anything foreign being thrown down a toilet is bad for the infrastructure.  The issue with wipes is that they’re being heavily marketed so their use is increasing at an exponential rate 

 Ok.  What I'm telling you is that the treatment plant systems accommodate condoms and tampons.  Why not wipes?  


none of that should be thrown in the toilet. I think every woman knows that sanitary products never get flushed. 


Wipes, and Tampons, do not break down the same way toilet paper does.  

We had to pay for a clogged line too, when my MIL's health care aide flushed all the wipes.


Red_Barchetta said:


spontaneous said:
 I now own a home with a septic tank.  I was present for the home inspection.  I’ve seen some of the things people throw down their toilet.  


Anything foreign being thrown down a toilet is bad for the infrastructure.  The issue with wipes is that they’re being heavily marketed so their use is increasing at an exponential rate 
 Ok.  What I'm telling you is that the treatment plant systems accommodate condoms and tampons.  Why not wipes?  

Treatment plants are not designed to accommodate condoms, tampons, or wipes.  Yes, the plants may have screens but wipes can bunch up and cause huge problems.


Red_Barchetta said:


spontaneous said:
 I now own a home with a septic tank.  I was present for the home inspection.  I’ve seen some of the things people throw down their toilet.  


Anything foreign being thrown down a toilet is bad for the infrastructure.  The issue with wipes is that they’re being heavily marketed so their use is increasing at an exponential rate 
 Ok.  What I'm telling you is that the treatment plant systems accommodate condoms and tampons.  Why not wipes?  

 Wipes are getting caught in the sewer lines BEFORE they reach the treatment plants.  THAT is the issue.  Look at the picture drummer boy posted above, that was a huge clog of wipes in a sewer main, well before the plant, and divers had to go in and clear it by hand.  I’ll have to find the article for exact numbers, but the divers had to go through a great distance of raw sewage in pitch black feeling their way through to reach the clog before they could start pulling it apart by hand


And even though tampons, tampon applicators, and used condoms aren’t as likely to get caught up in the main, they also should not be flushed and nobody is claiming they should be.  


I’ll add that the wipes really aren’t very good for your body either. They are very drying and can cause damage to your “parts”. They certainly should be used daily unless there is some extenuating circumstance. 


I'm not sure what there is about them that seems to make them more likely to cause these massive clogs in the system, but ew, gross.  And yeah the companies specifically market them as flushable.  Here's one news story about a Consumer Reports study that showed that although 2 out of 4 major brands did start to break apart of 12 hours in water, the other two didn't after 24 hours.  THEY EVEN PUT THE WIPES IN A BLENDER.

https://www.nbcdfw.com/news/business/Consumer-Reports-Are-Flushable-Wipes-Flushable-237585911.html

I've been thinking about how this thread is a microcosm of discussions about regulations in general. There's something people use in a particular way which in large numbers proves to be detrimental to the population. So government steps in with regulation, right? Not so fast, there is a portion of the population which has a genuine need to use this product in this way.  So okay, if a tiny fraction of people need to do this, it's not going to cause a problem.  But who decides who is exempt from the regulation?  Who figures out how to enforce it? How does someone prove they need to be exempt, and should they have to?


conandrob240 said:
I’ll add that the wipes really aren’t very good for your body either. They are very drying and can cause damage to your “parts”. They certainly should be used daily unless there is some extenuating circumstance. 

 Well, absent a bidet, I don't think you can adequately clean yourself without some moisture involved. Despite that stupid Charmin commercial with the bears.

So, I will continue my usage pattern

This clip is NSFW and contains rude language. But contains an essential truth. And sorry for the stupid watermark. Couldn't find a better version.



mrincredible said:
 But who decides who is exempt from the regulation?  Who figures out how to enforce it? How does someone prove they need to be exempt, and should they have to?

A Commissioner of Wipes is clearly needed.  There should be an official form from people when asking for an exception that includes a part filled in by a doctor, and whatever supplementary evidence that is relevant, including photos, etc.  Appeals can be brought to the Township Committee.


Jasmo said:


mrincredible said:
 But who decides who is exempt from the regulation?  Who figures out how to enforce it? How does someone prove they need to be exempt, and should they have to?
A Commissioner of Wipes is clearly needed.  There should be an official form from people when asking for an exception that includes a part filled in by a doctor, and whatever supplementary evidence that is relevant, including photos, etc.  Appeals can be brought to the Township Committee.

 Who’ll see that, down in the sewer? cheese


drummerboy said:
I'm usually skeptical about personal lifestyle choices in regards to environmental issues. (e.g. I'm not too big on recycling.)

There is one thing that I'm pretty adamant about, and it's flushing those damn un-flushable "flushable" wipes.
They're destroying our sewer systems.
So stop flushing them!

Thank you.

 I Remember saying i doubt they were really flushable 20 years ago....as far as feminine products, they commonly instructed to flush tampons...i dont remember the brand but a couple years ago one brand still had that instruction.



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