Wipes Clog 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 causes of sewer backups, in recent years sewer agencies around the country are dealing with the problem of flushable wipes.

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

Danger of Wipes

Flushable wipes are supposed to be biodegradable and break up like toilet paper, they do not.

These wipes do not disintegrate. They can cling to the interior walls of pipeline and/or get hung up on snags inside the pipes. They accumulate in pump stations and can clog and 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
  • diapers
  • baby and cleaning wipes
  • sanitary napkins/tampons
  • condoms

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

"Think Before You Flush" (PDF)

For more information, please call:

813-929-2755 Ext: 2049