Dumping kitty litter into the toilet

Kitty litter includes more than just your cat’s waste. It also contains clay and sand, which are extremely troublesome for any plumbing systems. The clay and silica clumping litters are designed to absorb moisture and create clumps, which turn into large clogs almost immediately once they enter your pipes.

Rinsing hair down the drain

You probably already know that showers are prone to clogging due to hair buildup, but the same thing can happen to your sink or toilet if you regularly sweep stray hairs down the drain. When hair goes down the drain, it can form knots and clumps, trapping in odor and making serious clogs in your pipe. The same is true for other stringy items, like dental floss.

Putting medication down the drain or in the toilet

While prescription medication, over-the-counter medication, and other substances don’t necessarily mess up your pipes, the ingredients in pharmaceuticals can pose dangers to your water supply. Dispose of medications responsibly, through your local pharmacy or medication disposal program.

Flushing tampons or sanitary napkins

The cotton in these items can easily snag and grab onto just about anything, causing clogs and harming machinery. And since these materials don’t decompose, they must be physically removed from the waste stream by the workers processing the waste and then sent to a landfill. You’re much better off wrapping these products and then tossing them in the trash from the get-go.

Pouring fats and oils down the sink

In a way, pipes are a lot like arteries. When fats and oils flush into the pipes and cool off, they freeze and congeal, building up like cholesterol in arteries. After a while, the blockage can become too great, causing your pipes to have a proverbial heart attack. Let these items solidify, then dispose of them in the trash.

Flushing wet wipes

Yes, even the ones marketed as “flushable.” Wet wipes have become very popular, but they don’t play well with plumbing pipes. They don’t disintegrate at the same rate as toilet paper, which can lead to a clogged sewer pipe.