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Fire & Water - Cleanup & Restoration

Clogs Offenders Of Water Damage

11/16/2021 (Permalink)

One of the most common culprits of water damage in your home comes from overflowing toilets.  Each flush of a toilet uses approximately 1.6 gallons of water, so if the water comes up and out of the bowl instead of going down the drain like it should, that’s equivalent to pouring a large container of milk all over your bathroom floor!  One way to avoid overflowing toilets is to be extra careful about what you put down the drain, which is all a toilet really is. 

 Here are few things to be sure you DO NOT flush down your toilet:

*GUM – Gum is insoluble, which means it will never disintegrate.  Plus, it is sticky, which is a bad combination in a toilet or sink.

*HAIR – Hair acts like a spider web and traps other items in the drain and causes clogs.

*YOUR PET FISH – We have all seen many movies with the family gathered around the toilet as they send their pet fish back to the ocean after it has taken his last gulp.  The fact of the matter is that your pet fish may get caught in your pipes and cause a backup.  Consider an alternative burial spot rather than the toilet bowl.

*WIPES – Even if they are labeled as flushable, wipes don’t disintegrate like toilet paper and should never be placed in the toilet.

*DENTAL FLOSS – Just like hair, dental floss can trap other items in the drain and cause clogs.

*MENSTRUAL PRODUCTS/DIAPERS – These products are meant to absorb moisture, not dissolve in it.  Imagine what a disposal diaper looks like when it gets wet – then imagine that in your toilet drain.  Not a good combination.

*FACIAL TISSUES/PAPER TOWELS – Although made of paper and sometimes used instead of toilet paper, they do not disintegrate like toilet paper.  Throw these in the garbage can instead.

*COTTON BALLS – Although also paper based, these do not break down in your drains so don’t put them down the toilet.

*COOKING GREASE – Although liquid when it is hot, grease quickly thickens when it cools off, which can cause clogs in your drains.  Keep it out of yours.

For bathtubs and showers, install a simple drain strainer to catch excessive hair and be sure to clean it out regularly.  Make sure you deposit the debris in the garbage can and do not put it back down the sink or toilet.

Since we’re talking about clogged sinks, it’s important to mention one of the bigger sinks in the house…the kitchen sink.  Obviously, the same rules apply as the bathroom sinks – if you wouldn’t put something down the bathroom sink, you shouldn’t put it down the garbage disposal either, even though it seems bigger and more capable of handling larger items.  Here are a few other things you should never put down the kitchen sink or garbage disposal:

*Eggshells – If the inside of an egg can go in the garbage disposal, it only makes sense that the outside can too, right?  Wrong!  Egg shells get ground up into small pieces that actually get stuck to the sides of the pipes and can cause a backup.  Be sure to throw eggshells into the waste can.

*Stickers from Produce – The adhesive on produce stickers can also get stuck inside your pipes and cause clogs.  Be sure to remove the stickers before you place peelings from fruit and vegetables down the drain.

*Coffee Grounds – Although it might make your kitchen smell like a good cup of brew, coffee grounds cause more clogs in your kitchen sink than another other item.  Be sure to keep them out of your sink drain. 

If you do experience a toilet or sink backup and you end up with water where it shouldn’t be, call the experts at SERVPRO

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