Sewer Problems For Homeowners And Cities Costing Millions Of Dollars.

Disposable ‘Flushable’ wipes – basically baby wet wipes designed for grown adults – have become the major problem for residential and municipal sewer systems around the world because many “flushable” wipes are too strong and bulky for sewer systems. This is costing homeowners and cities millions of dollars.

Adults have begun using what they believe to be the same wet wipes once used for changing babies for their own personal sanitation needs, leading sewer problems for homeowners and cities costing millions of dollars.

For years, sewer pipes and machinery have been getting clogged by these nonwoven cloths, creating massive, expensive clogs in cities around the world like Seattle, Portland, New York, Washington DC, San Francisco, London and just about any other populated place where flushable wipes are commonly used. The most problematic type of wipes are these personal wipes that adults are increasingly using in the bathroom.

As the use of personal wipes has expanded from infants to grown adults, a problem has emerged: most people do not keep a diaper pail in their bathroom and are of course reluctant to dispose of used wipes in their bathroom trash.

The majority of wipes sold do not biodegrade rapidly enough to avoid clogging and end up getting caught in the sewer pipe and machine surface imperfections.

“Flushable” Wipes In The News

Repeated headlines about horrifying septic system disasters clearly indicate that “flushable” wipes are in fact not flushable. For example, this huge “fatberg” recently dislodged from a Minnesota sewer caked in grease and fortified with wipes.

Over 18 million dollars has been spent by the City of New York on damages caused to their own sewer system by “flushable” wipes. “The city has spent more than $18 million in the past five years on wipe-related equipment problems, officials said. The volume of materials extracted from screening machines at the city’s wastewater treatment plants has more than doubled since 2008, an increase attributed largely to the wipes.” – “Wet Wipes Box Says Flush. New York’s Sewer System Says Don’t.

And a Consumer Reports 2013 analysis cautions against the flushing of ANY kind of wipe down a toilet. “Companies heavily advertise their flushable wipes. They sound so convenient. But plumbers make a lot of house calls that involve clogged toilets, backed up sewer lines, and flooded basements. Often the culprit is flushable wipes.” – “Consumer Reports: Are Flushable Wipes Flushable?

Not Safe For Septic Systems And Sewers

News and personal stories about expensive sewer line clogs have multiplied recently as more ‘flushable’ wipe products have become available. Manufacturers market their disposable wipes as “flushable” or “safe for septic systems and sewers,” but the reality of the situation has proven otherwise.

Because the wipes do not disintegrate easily or quickly, they clog sewage treatment equipment and sometimes home septic systems as well.

From manufacturer to manufacturer, the materials used to make “flushable” wipes varies, but most of them are strong enough to keep the wipe from disintegrating. The materials are very strong and fibrous. Even if the label indicates “flushable” one should always avoid flushing any type of wipedown the toilet. This will help prevent expensive clogs in your sewage system.

While the sewer industry and the Wipes industry work out a solution to this growing problem, you can avoid expenses and headaches caused by a clogged or broken sewer line with coverage from National Water Company.


While a timely sewer line inspection will typically cost somewhere between $225 and $300, if sewer line clogs are left unresolved, the resulting sewer line repair or sewer line replacement can cost between $8,000 and $20,000 or more.

Due to the risk of failure of these aged sewer lines and the high costs of repair or replacement, some cities are now making insurance policies available to their residents to deal with these expenses.

National Water Company, a well-established insurance company that carries a very strong policy specifically built to protect homeowners from the coming expenses of aging utilities.

Whether your home is 5 years old or 100, for just pennies per day NWC has an insurance policy that will cover the cost of sewer line pipe repair, as well as inspection and maintenance recommendations to provide additional peace of mind.