The awful truth about flushable wipes blocking pipes

Flushable wipes block drains and sewers all over Australia and the world. The real story about flushable wipes has made news headlines all over Australia. The ACCC have currently instituted proceedings in the Federal Court against Kimberley Clark and  Pental for making false representations in relation to the flushable wipes marketed in Australia.

The wipes market in Australia is now big business, there are wipes for everything, toilet cleaning, floor cleaning, make-up removal, even for wiping your adult bottom! And for some of us lazy humans, apparently, some of these wipes are flushable, just like toilet paper.

According to Australia’s water service providers, the number of flushable wipes that block sewers is growing each year, and they are currently spending an estimated $15 million clearing these sewer blockages.

The Facts:

  • One in four people in Sydney is flushing wet wipes
  • Sydney Water has removed more than 1000 tonnes of wet wipe materials from its wastewater system in the past two years. If laid end-to-end, that’s enough wet wipes to reach LA and back again.
  • Wet wipes increase the risk of pipe blockages and overflow to local creeks and rivers
  • About 75% of all sewer blockages involve wet wipes

4 Elements Plumbing, along with many other plumbers across Australia, are spending an increasing amount of time removing wet wipes out of our customer’s pipes, and our clients are very surprised to find that the wipes are labelled as flushable, as they are capable of causing extensive damage and it can cost thousands worth of dollars, especially if the wipes cause a blockage and it results in a raw sewage overflow.

If you are one of these customers, who was not aware of the dangers of these ‘flushable’, and find your toilet blocked, 4 Elements Plumbing can come to your home or business and fix or unclog the problem!

*Statistics provided by Sydney Water

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Our team has implemented several changes to keep our staff and customers safe during this unsettling time. Our safe working procedures include the following;


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