The Holiday season is finally here….
At this time of year shops are bustling, restaurants, hotels and cafes are full of shoppers seeking coffee and heat and our streets and towns seem much more busy and alive as we all prep for family diners and parties.
What we don’t think about is the increased rubbish and waste that starts to fill up with décor, gift wrappings and food scraps, at this time of year it’s so important for you to think about your waste habits. This includes what you’re flushing down the toilet.
Wet wipes, even if marketed as ‘flushable’, don’t break down in our sewer system. Instead, they act like a net that catches other solids such as hair, grease, fats, oil, facial tissue and paper towels. This solid mass slowly builds up in our drain systems until it becomes a fatberg, with consequences that are real and scary.
A fatberg in your sewer system can cause a severe backup, which leads to further problems like a flooded kitchen, sewer-logged yard or water damaged floor. You could be facing thousands of pounds in repairs and severe damage to your property.
If a backup happens on your property, you are not only paying for costly repairs, you may also be losing valuable belongings to raw sewage damage. Sewers are built to handle the three Ps only: pee, poo and toilet paper. Anything else needs to be tossed out with waste, recycling or organics.
To avoid a costly fatberg, never flush:
- ‘flushable’ wipes
- pet, baby or cleaning wipes
- paper towels
- facial tissues
- feminine hygiene products
- disposable diapers
- condoms or wrappers
- adhesive bandages
- gift wrap or tissue paper
- fats, oils or grease
- cotton balls or swabs
- prescription medication
- cigarette butts
- dental floss
- candy wrappers
Wastewater from your toilet takes less than a day to travel from your home to a treatment plant. If there’s a blockage in the sewer pipe caused by a tree root, a curve or grease, toilet paper can still pass through without adding to the build-up. Wipes and other large, absorbent materials will get caught, causing a water blockage. The pipe then needs to be repaired.
Here’s what you can do to keep our sewer pipes clean, protect the environment and ensure flushable items end up where they belong:
- Don’t flush oils, fats or grease. Instead, cool and place in your green organics cart. These substances lead to costly repairs.
- Take unused medications to the pharmacy. Do this instead of flushing them down the toilet. Pharmaceuticals are not treated and end up in the environment.
- Use phosphate-free cleaning materials. This reduces phosphorous levels in the river and subsequent algae growth that negatively affects the aquatic environment.
For more help, advise or information please contact Grease Guardian HERE