Amid the COVID-19 lockdown, residential toilets face the heightened strain with many searching for toilet paper alternatives. With many South Australian households resorting to alternative toilet paper products and flushing them, it’s crucial to recognize the 5 toilet paper alternatives that should never be flushed and learn how to identify a clogged toilet.

Blocked drains are not only unpleasant and smelly, but they can also disrupt your property’s functionality. During the COVID-19 lockdown, people spend more time at home, including increased toilet usage. Consequently, household plumbing systems must handle a larger volume of flushing. On average, a person flushes around five times daily, meaning a family of four would flush 20 times.

South Australian families’ toilet paper shortages have led to using alternative products like tissues, wipes, or napkins, which are often disposed of in the toilet. Regrettably, toilet paper alternatives never flush.

As per SA Water and the Master Plumbers Association, these problems have contributed to a 20% increase in toilet clogs.

To avoid unnecessary plumbing problems and services due to blocked drains, it’s important to remind your household about what can and cannot be flushed down the toilet.

SA Water recently initiated a campaign to educate people about “fatbergs” – clumps of waste accumulating in drains and sewers from items that should never be flushed. Fatbergs cost SA Water over $400,000 annually to remove. They’ve even created a catchy jingle to make the topic more appealing, focusing on the 3Ps of what can be flushed.

At home, non-decomposing items can cause significant sewer blockages and may necessitate a plumber’s visit. Discuss with your household members the items that should never be flushed down the toilet.

Here are the 5 toilet paper alternatives that should not be flushed:

  • Tissues – Although they might seem like a suitable alternative, tissues take much longer to break down than toilet paper.
  • Baby wipes – While helpful in cleaning, baby wipes are not designed to break down and can harm your plumbing.
  • Flushable wipes – Despite appearing to be an ideal option, these wipes are notorious for causing blocked drains in homes.
  • Paper towels – Many people believe it’s acceptable to flush paper towels, but they are not designed to break down easily and will clog your plumbing.
  • Sanitary products – Never flush these items down the toilet; always dispose of them in a bin.

Fill two bowls with water and use that as a “flush ability test.” Put toilet paper in one and an alternative item in the other. Observe the time it takes for them to break down. If the alternative items don’t decompose at the same rate as toilet paper, they should be placed in the bin rather than flushed.

So, what toilet paper alternatives are safe to flush down the toilet?

  • Using non-flushable alternatives can often result in a clogged drain. Here are some common indicators of a blocked drain:
  • Unpleasant odors
  • Slow-draining water
  • Toilet water being drawn back after flushing
  • Gurgling noises
  • Abnormal water levels or overflowing toilet bowl

These signs suggest that you may have a blockage requiring attention.

Need to unblock drain due to toilet paper alternatives? Reach out to Plumfast for prompt plumbing assistance.

If your plumbing is struggling to handle the increased usage during the COVID-19 lockdown, or you’re experiencing a blocked toilet or drain, contact Plumfast at 8281 7783 or book an appointment online.

Toilet Paper Alternatives