More and more, flushable wipes are becoming a staple in bathrooms - especially among seniors and families with young. New products like Dude Wipes are even trying to make flushable wipes mainstream with men. What many wipe users don't realize is that flushing such a small product can have enormous consequences.
Not So Flushable
Although these wipes are designed to be biodegradable and break down when flushed, unfortunately that doesn't happen fast enough. Many local residents have learned the hard way that wipes can clog their home's toilets and plumbing. If they do exit your home's plumbing and enter the city's underground sewer system, they mix with household grease, creating large, immovable clogs that can stop the flow of waste water, clog up pipes, and cause sewers to back up into homes and overflow through manholes into the streets.
So far in 2016, there have been three major incidences involving flushable wipes in Abilene. The first, (see picture) produced 200 gallons of sewage that spewed out through a manhole. The second produced 800 gallons that again exited out a manhole and streamed down an alley, turned and went down two others. Although looking like a water leak, it came with a rank odor that one would expect from sewage.
The third incident involved a private cleanout at a place of business. The clog was found in their service line that connects their building to the City sewer line. As a result, the business was responsible for the cleanout at a significant expense.
To prevent these problems and Keep Abilene Flowing, throw wipes in the trash and refrain from disposing them down the toilet. Only flush toilet paper down the toilet. Keep a small trashcan in the bathroom for everything else.