Just about all parents use baby wipes to change the diapers of their newborn babies. While baby wipes are still primarily used for children, use of baby wipes among adults is quickly rising. In fact, many adults are using these man-made "flushable" products instead of toilet paper. However, while advertisements may claim that these products are "flushable," baby and adult wipes actually pose a major problem.
The Problem with Baby Wipes & Man-Made "Flushable" Products
A few years ago, the city of Wyoming filed a class-action suit against Nice-Pak, Kimberly-Clark, Procter & Gamble, and a few other manufacturers of wet wipes for claiming that their products can be flushed down the toilet. When wet wipes go down the toilet, they leave the home via a lateral pipe, which leads to the public sewer system. The sewage pumps in the sewer system work to ensure the wastewater continues to flow in the right direction.
However, while toilet paper disintegrates with time, wet wipes do not. Over time, wet wipes clog the sewage pumps and break them down. This results in stagnant wastewater going back to the homes. When this occurs, cities need to shut down sewer systems to remove the wet wipes manually.
In order for a wet wipe to be deemed "flushable," it needs to pass seven different tests. However, these tests do not accurately simulate sewer conditions. Also, these tests are not regulated by the government and manufacturers don't face any consequences if their products fail to pass these tests. Many cities like Wyoming hope to change this to stop wet wipes from hindering the functionality of public sewer systems.
Bottom line, be careful with flushable products as they may not breakdown as well as they should and cause major problems with the sewer system.
For more information about the sewer system and what can and cannot be flushed, contact the team at JETT Pump and Valve today.