Cleaning wipes causing big plumbing problems

Cleaning wipes causing big plumbing problems

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PHOENIX -

Many of you have probably flushed them down your own toilet -- those cleansing wipes that say they're flushable.

While they may go down the drain easily, they could be causing major plumbing problems once they're in your pipes.

"You know we've actually gotten some good jewelry back, dentures, a cell phone and a kitty," says Linda Stanfield, owner of Benjamin Franklin Plumbers.

Yes, Linda Stanfield's plumbers did save a kitten from a toilet drain. That's certainly not "flushable."

But an item that claims to be keeps Benjamin Franklin Plumbing quite busy.

"One of ten clogs in a toilet we get have to do with flushable wipes."

The homeowner is always surprised by the source of their stinky situation.

"Because the normal public and what you see on the containers says go ahead and flush, it its safe its clean go ahead and do this, however not every toilet is the same. And not every toilet acts the same and not every sewer system acts the same so it's really important to know what it is that you're using to flush that down."

Stanfield recommends buying a toilet seat with a built in bidet. For about $1,500 to $2,000, you can get that same fresh clean feeling. It could even save you money in the long run.

The problem doesn't just stop at home. The National Association of Clean Water Agencies says the wipes have increasingly been causing problems for cities about four years now. Stanfield has heard those complaints in our state.

"They definitely do not want stuff going down the toilets including flushable wipes because they're causing nothing but sanitary problems, causing aquifer problems," says Stanfield.

Manufacturers argue that maybe adults are putting non-flushable baby wipes down their drains.

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