Things NOT to Flush Down Your Toilet!

To many, clean water is a scarce commodity. According to the world bank, every year millions die from diseases associated with inadequate water supply, sanitation and hygiene. In addition to that, more than 844 million people still don’t have access to clean water supplies.

Here in Malaysia, we are very fortunate to receive ample amounts of rainfall per year. With statistics from WHO that show 92% of Malaysia’s total population having access to clean water supplies, this is probably why we often take our water supply for granted.

In a statement by Indah Water Konsortium Sdn Bhd (IWK) in 2014, an amount upwards of 70,000 tonnes (equivalent to 70 million Kg) of trash end up in Malaysia’s sewage system every year. Not surprisingly, the overload of trash that is not meant to be in the system has also led to the clogging of sewage pipes causing untreated wastewater to overflow. Aside from the obvious issue of stench, wastewater can also carry harmful organisms that cause waterborne diseases. These wastewaters may add on inconveniences to us, as it is a likelihood that our sources of water supply get contaminated and cause water disruptions. In fact, it wouldn’t be a leap to suggest, that you as the reader have probably already encountered water disruptions due to contamination.

Often times, people unknowingly contribute to the blockage of sewage pipes by flushing down items that they shouldn’t. So if you’re unsure about what shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet, below we have compiled a list of 6 items to help you out.

1. Wet wipes

Regardless of whether it’s cleaning wipes, toilet wipes, beauty wipes or baby wipes, you should never flush them down the toilet even if it says biodegradable or flushable on the packaging. Even if something is biodegradable, it doesn’t degrade instantly. It can take months to break down and if everyone is doing this, sewers quickly become blocked.

2. Cotton wool and cotton buds and bandages

Unassuming and seemingly harmless, cotton products do not break down in water. Because of this, cotton can float around in the system and aggregate with other cotton chunks until it becomes a sizeable ball that can block sewage pipes. Bandages meanwhile are made from non-biodegradable plastic. So the next time you’re considering flushing cotton swabs or bandages down the toilet, think twice.

3. Dental floss

A tiny piece of dental floss may seem like nothing but floss isn’t biodegradable. Similar to cotton, the floss can aggregate with other pieces of trash and eventually clog up sewer pipes.

4. Cigarette butts

Many people throw cigarette butts down the toilet to eliminate the risk of starting a fire. The logic is understandable, yet by preventing a fire in this fashion you risk major sewage blockage in your home. The materials used in cigarettes will never break down. So again, it isn’t advisable to flush them down the toilet.

5. Fat, oil and grease

Fat, oil and grease may be liquids when you flushed them down the toilet, but did you know they solidify in cooler temperatures? Comparable to how an artery may get clogged, these substances solidify around your sewage pipes and stubbornly refuse to be removed. Consequently, you will end up with a blocked pipe and a handful of plumbing problems.

6. Sanitary products

People often flush sanitary products down the toilet especially if there are no sanitary bins around because they think it’s more convenient. In reality, sanitary products contribute greatly to sewers getting clogged up and it’s not just big sewerage systems that get affected. If your own sewage pipes become blocked, you could end up with a big mess to all piping points in your garden or home. All sanitary waste, not just sanitary pads should be properly disposed of, not flushed away.

If you own a business, keeping your sewage systems unblocked will likely be one of your top priorities, as it ensures minimal spending on plumbing issues in the future. Of the items on our list, what can easily be prevented from clogging your sewage pipes is actually sanitary products. By having a sanitary bin placed in your washrooms, it will not only be able to reduce the risk of sewers blockages but also enhance customer experience.

As Michael LeBoeuf once said, “a satisfied customer is the best business strategy of all.” So If you do own a business, we highly recommend that you provide sanitary bins in female washrooms. For a touch of class and a world of convenience, you won’t be disappointed by Initial’s Signature range No Touch Feminine Hygiene Unit. It offers user a safe, discreet and hygienic washroom experience and also contains integral antibacterial technology that minimises the spread of harmful bacteria to give you and your customers peace of mind.

For more information on our Initial feminine hygiene solutions, contact us at 1300 882 388 today!

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