Bathroom wipes are becoming increasingly popular, but they are also becoming increasingly problematic at the same time. Wastewater authorities around the country are warning that many of the pre-moistened sanitary towelettes labeled as “flushable” aren’t breaking down as promised and are instead causing clogs and backups in residential and municipal sewer systems. The problem is so bad, in fact, that some sewer officials have begun to install traps to figure out which households are flushing these wipes down the toilet in an attempt to stop the behavior. Here’s a closer look at the problem and why flushable wipes might force you to call a residential plumbing company in Arlington, VA for repairs.
Increasing Sales Coinciding with Increasing Clogs
One of the major problems with flushable wipes is the increasing number of wipes that are being flushed down toilets around the country. The sales of consumer wipes increased nearly five percent each year between 2007 and 2013, and is expected to grow at a rate of six percent annually through 2018. The growing number of flushable wipes has placed additional strain on residential plumbing systems and municipal wastewater treatment facilities that weren’t designed to handle the sheer volume of wipes that take much longer to degrade in water than advertised, or even wipes that don’t degrade at all.
Millions in Maintenance and Repair Costs
The problem of flushable wipes has cost come municipalities millions of dollars in maintenance and repair costs to unclog pipes, clear pumps, and replace or upgrade machinery to handle the increased volume of flushable wipes. For example, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, which services Montgomery and Prince George’s counties in Maryland, spent more than $1 million installing heavy-duty grinders to break up flushable wipes that were causing pumps and pipes to become clogged.
If you’ve been using flushable wipes in your home, contact All Plumbing, Inc. and let one of our experienced plumbers flush out your residential plumbing system to remove any clogs and build-ups caused by these wipes and other debris. We also offer 24/7 emergency plumbing services in the event that a clog results in a toilet backup or other major plumbing problem. Call us at (703) 525-7973 to learn more about our drain cleaning and plumbing repair services.