Without question, there is no device that is more fickle than the toilet. Though it is made to withstand copious amounts of human waste – yuck! – it tends to be rather picky when it comes to other items.

Because we never want you to have to pay the hefty price for an emergency plumber, we have a handy list for you today that features things that you should never, EVER flush down a toilet. Don’t say we didn’t warn you…

  1. Baby and Cosmetic Wipes

    Even wipes that are labeled as being “flushable” can cause clogs over time, and are absolutely horrible for septic systems. Since they don’t easily break down, they are also triggering crises in sewer systems across the country, causing millions of dollars in equipment damage.

  2. Feminine Hygiene Products

    If you haven’t been reading the posted signs on the inside of virtually every public restroom, then you may be unaware of the fact that the expanding properties in both pads AND tampons make for the most notorious clogs.

  3. Paper Towels

    Sure, it can be tempting to simply throw those grimy paper towels in the toilet after a bathroom cleaning session, but doing so will cause you nothing but trouble! Because they are made with materials that are much more durable than toilet paper, they simply don’t break down fast enough to be safely flushed.

  4. Condoms

    Similar to baby wipes, flushed condoms are causing lots of problems in sewage systems throughout the world. These latex guys are made to withstand fluid and pressure, so they won’t simply dissolve on their own when tossed down the toilet.

  5. Diapers

    Even the new-fangled diapers that come equipped with “flushable inserts” should NEVER be disposed of in the toilet. Flushing even one of these guys can cause a flooded bathroom of epic proportions.

  6. Cotton Swabs

    Even though cotton swabs seem tiny enough to “skate by” in most drains, these cleaning tools have the tendency of getting lodged very easily. Next time you’re done cleaning your ears, throw the Q-Tips in the trash.

  7. Kitty Litter

    It may seem logical to scoop cat poop into the toilet—after all, that’s where our waste goes, too. Nevertheless, flushing cat feces is bad for your drains and the environment. The popular clumping variety expands when put in contact with water, making it hard to move through plumbing, and the poop itself is known to spread harmful bacteria in oceans and rivers.

  8. Hair

    Are you a guy or gal who routinely throws excess hair from your brush into the toilet? If so, then it’s time to stop the madness! Think about how easily hair builds up and causes clogs in the shower—the exact same thing is true for your toilet.

Items you CAN flush down your toilet

Hand flushing toilet.Devon via Deposit Photos

Now that you know all about what you should never flush down the toilet, here are a few that you can…
  1. “Number one”
  2. “Number two”
  3. Toilet paper


To learn even more facts about the items you should avoid flushing, watch the video below. And be sure to share this info—especially with your kids. You’ll only have clean drains if everyone in your house cooperates!

What do you think of flushing these 8 items? Have you ever gotten a clog because you threw one of them in the toilet? Is there anything you would like to add to the list?