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Flushing Wipes will Clog Your Pipes
Pasco County Sanitary Sewer Collection System is a network of sewer lines, manholes, pumping stations and other structures used to collect wastewater and transport it to a treatment plant. With aging infrastructure, Pasco County is battling the problem of “ragging” — when baby wipes, diapers, dental floss, paper towels and other items not designed for flushing entangle sewer pumps.

While tree roots and fats, oils, and grease (FOG) have always been the leading causes of sewer backups, in recent years sewer agencies around the country are dealing with the problem of flushable wipes.

Toilet paper manufacturing companies have been marketing these wipe products as “flushable” over the last few years, but wastewater professionals are finding out these products are not safe for sewage systems.

Flushable wipes are supposed to be biodegradable and break up like normal toilet paper, but they do not. These wipes stay firmly intact and do not disintegrate. As a result, they will cling to the interior walls of pipeline and/or get hung up on snags inside the pipes. They also clog pumps
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from transporting sewage to treatment plants and eventually they will destroy the pumps. De-ragging pumps and unclogging pipes is labor intensive and increases the cost of maintaining your sewer system.

Examples of products that you should not flush include:

• paper towels
• cloth or disposable diapers
• flushable wipes
• sanitary napkins
• certain tampons

Do not flush any items that are not designed to disintegrate like toilet paper when flushed.