10 Things Never to Flush Down the Toilet

3 min

Clogged pipes, unexpected plumbing visits, and hefty repair bills – these are the unwanted consequences of flushing the wrong items down your toilet. It’s a common slip-up, whether it’s due to running out of toilet paper or just a momentary lapse in judgment.

But even if your toilet doesn’t overflow right away, you might be causing unseen damage to your home’s plumbing and contributing to larger sewer system problems. Save yourself from this hassle and potential harm by avoiding these 10 items in your toilet.

“Flushable” Wipes

Despite their ‘flushable’ label, moist towelettes should never be disposed of in the toilet. These wipes don’t disintegrate in water, often resulting in clogs and, if not promptly addressed with a plunger, potentially causing backed-up sewer lines.


Feminine Hygiene Products

There’s a compelling reason why public restrooms prominently display signs advising against flushing feminine hygiene products. Pads and tampons, engineered to expand and retain fluids, do not dissolve when flushed. To ensure proper disposal of these personal items, wrap them in toilet paper and dispose of them in the garbage can.


Paper Towels

While paper towel manufacturers may boast about the strength of their products, this durability comes with a drawback. Unlike toilet paper designed to break down in water, paper towels remain resilient, increasing the risk of toilet clogs. Ensure a clog-free toilet by always disposing of used paper towels in the trash.



Even plumbers don’t enjoy retrieving used condoms from clogged sewer lines. Latex prophylactics take years to biodegrade, so avoid introducing them into the water treatment system. Instead, securely wrap a used condom in toilet paper and dispose of it in a waste receptacle.


Disposable Diapers

Even a single disposable diaper, even in the smallest newborn size, has the potential to clog your toilet. To properly dispose of a soiled diaper, roll it up and use the diaper’s adhesive strips to secure it. Place the diaper in a small plastic bag and then dispose of the entire package in the trash.


Cotton Swabs

While it might be tempting to drop your used cotton swab in the toilet after cleaning your ears or fixing makeup, it’s best to resist the urge. Cotton swabs are notorious for getting stuck in drain pipe bends and catching other items you flush, leading to potentially significant clogs.

Kitty Litter

Kitty litter, especially the ‘clumping’ varieties, contains clay and sand that absorb moisture. When your feline friend does their business, this moisture turns into hard clumps that can lead to toilet and pipe clogs. Rather than flushing it, place the waste and soiled litter into a disposable bag, securely seal it, and dispose of it in the trash.


Dryer Sheets

Discovering a hidden dryer sheet in your clothing? Don’t be tempted to flush it down the toilet. Dryer sheets don’t dissolve in water and contain synthetic chemicals that can harm the water system if flushed.



Those substantial hair clumps on your brush should find their home in the trash, not the toilet. Hair doesn’t dissolve and easily gets caught on pipe protrusions, forming stubborn clogs that might need a drain snake to clear. Dispose of that tangle in the waste receptacle!


Dental Floss

Even after your dentist-recommended daily flossing, avoid tossing the used floss in the toilet. Long strands of waxed or unwaxed floss can entangle with other items in the drainage system, causing plumbing issues. Additionally, dental floss isn’t biodegradable.


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