Disposable wipes — even ones labeled as flushable — cause major problems when flushed down toilets. Wipes used for changing diapers, personal hygiene, and housecleaning don’t break down the way toilet paper does.
Wipes clog homeowner and municipal sewer pipes, put stress on community wastewater collection and treatment equipment, and cause municipalities to spend thousands on premature equipment repair and replacement. The clogs and backups they cause may result in expensive plumbing bills for your home or increased wastewater fees.
Wipes snag on any imperfection in sewer pipes, catch passing debris and grease, and create a “ball” that will grow to plug the pipe. They also get drawn into sewer-line and wastewater treatment plant pumps and clog and damage them. Municipalities must manually clear out pumps or remove clogs.
This video courtesy of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency shows how wipes don't break down as toilet paper does.
Can the F.O.G. (Fats, Oils, Grease)
Grease is the number one culprit of sewer pipe overflows and backups. Sewer overflows and backups can cause health hazards, harm the environment and damage your home. Grease gets into the sewer from household drains and poorly maintained grease interceptors at restaurants or other businesses.
Be sure to properly dispose of cooking grease, by pouring fats and oils from turkey, bacon, etc. into an empty can and throwing the can away. Please do not pour oil and grease down drains or toilets.
Grease-clogged Pipe (photo courtesy Arlington County DES)