Are Flushable Wipes Really Flushable?
Monday, July 13, 2020
by: Jerry Peel, A.O. Reed & Co.

Section: Member News

This is a topic that has always been discussed and debated. Let’s breakdown the facts:
First, what is a wet wipe? Wet wipes come in many shapes and sizes – from toilet tissue substitutes to make up removers. They can also be baby wipes or sanitizing wipes. There are quite a few practical reasons to use a wet wipe, like cleaning or sanitizing.
The problem is there is not a current standard to deem a wipe “flushable.”  Many manufacturers state how fast the product dissolves in water or how many wipes can be flushed at a time.
Generally, these wipes are made from fibrous, non-woven material like wood pulp cellulose or other fibers like polypropylene that are man-made. The fibers are then formed into a mat and compressed into sheets at which point binders and scents are added.
Fun fact: We have had a “flushable” wipe sitting in a jar of water since October 2019; the wipe remains fully intact with no sign of disintegrating. A wipe may flush, but they certainly DO NOT breakdown at the same rate that toilet paper does!
Plumbers across the world, and right here at A.O. Reed & Co. have found that these products cause havoc on plumbing sewer pipes!  Our advice is NEVER flush any wipe product down the drain other than a toilet tissue! 
Thank you to A.O. Reed & Co., a 2020 BOMA San Diego Annual Supporting Partner, for providing this educational content.