Man-made Monster Takes Out Town’s Sewer System

Jun 1st, 2020

Using wet wipes is common to many households. That is because a lot of wet wipes brands promote their products as ‘flushable.’ However, they can still cause a lot of problems the moment you flush it down your toilet. This is what the Florida wastewater facility experienced.

For the first time in history, all of the four pumps of the Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department are clogged with wet wipes!

This is why utility officials in Florida county are constantly reminding their residents to NEVER flush wet wipes down the toilet. Because of this, all four pumps were clogged at the same time. As seen on their Facebook post, the Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department blamed the clogs on the increased use of wet wipes.

The post reads: “It took a team of three utility mechanics to disassemble and reassemble the pumps in order to remove the compacted wipes.”

In addition to toilet paper, companies also promote their wet wipes for a ‘cleaner experience.’ You have to remember that there are different types of wet wipes – the regular ones, medicated wipes, and feminine wipes. And many of these brands promise their consumers that the wipes are safe for your septic tank. And that they can be flushed down the toilet.

But after what happened to the Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department, it is safe to say that yes, you can go ahead and use wet wipes but avoid flushing it down the toilet.

The wipes can flush down the toilet without any problems. The problem is that they will move through your sewer system. And there are sewer systems that are built of clay, concrete, or iron pipes. These are the older types of sewers.

And all of these are susceptible to the growth of trees. When the roots begin to grow into the sewer system like at the joints, everything that passes through the pipes will get caught in these roots.

And when you are flushing items that are not sewer-friendly, they can get clogged. Using toilet paper is not a problem since it can get dissolved quickly, even the thickest varieties. However, the wet wipes can take weeks or even months before it completely dissolves. And when this happens, it can clog the sewer system. And worse, it can back up into your home and you will need a sewer cleaning service.

And even if the wet wipes managed to make it through the sewer system, it can still create problems the moment it arrives at the sewage treatment plant. The industrial-grade pumps can get damaged and overheat because of the amount of work it needs to do due to the fibrous wet wipes.

That is why to avoid future problems, the Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department suggests that those who are low on toilet paper because of the shortages caused by the COVID-19 pandemic should take note that all kinds of wet wipes, including those that are labeled ‘flushable’ should only be thrown in the trash. They are not toilet-friendly. Make it a habit to throw everything else in your trash can.

Be responsible because when the wet wipes that you love so much cause a clog in the major pipes or pumps, you are not the only one who will suffer.