Get educated by Dj Phatberg on what you should not be flushing down the toilet. Think before you flush!
What you should and should not put down the drain
Everything you flush down the toilet or pour down the drain goes through our sewerage systems. It's important to remember that they are designed to transport only certain matter and when foreign items appear, they can build up and cause unwanted blockages which are messy and costly to clean up.
So remember, only Pee, Poo and (Toilet) Paper should be flushed down your toilet.
And only non-toxic cleaning products, household washing water, dishwashing and cooking water (excluding fats, oils and grease and solids) can go down the sink or drain.
Disposing of unwanted items
Here is the best way to dispose of some of the most common items that can cause blockages, harm to your pipes and have a negative impact on the environment:
|Can be placed in your general waste bin.|
Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pile
|For larger quantities, commercial hazardous waste unknown chemicals and fats, oils and grease (FOG); search for a local business that specialises in hazardous waste removal or FOG removal.||Ask your local chemist if they will accept medications|
|Drop off for FREE at one of Council’s Transfer Stations next time you make a trip. See list of Accepted Items for details and accepted quantities.||Do not dispose of items down the toilet, sink or drain|
Where to put it?
|Item||Is it Pee, Poo or Paper?||Disposal Options|
|Baby Wipes (wet wipes, sanitary wipes) - both flushable and non-flushable|
|Cotton buds and cotton balls|
|Fabric and clothing|
|Household fats, oils and grease|
|Vegetable scraps including pasta and rice|
|Meat, seafood, shells and bones|
|Household chemicals (kerosene, cleaning products, antibacterial agents, herbicides, pesticides)|
|Hair (human and animal)|
|Motor oils and grease|
|Paints and solvents (turpentine)|
|Produce stickers (on fruit)|
For more information about disposing of trade waste and larger quantities safely, please visit Councils Trade waste page.
What happens when unwanted items enter the sewer system?
Items such as wet wipes, fats, oils, sanitary items and other foreign matter flushed down the toilet or tipped down the sink can lead to a sewage blockage and cause overflows that can be costly to clean up and cause environmental harm to our creeks and waterways and the Great Barrier Reef. Sewage overflows are also a potential health hazard as raw sewage may carry harmful bacteria, viruses, and pathogens.
Remember only Pee, Poo and Paper (toilet) should be flushed.
Only non-toxic cleaning products, household washing water, dishwashing and cooking water (but not fats, oils and grease and solids) can go down the sink or drain.
Do you have a blocked drain?
Disposing of unwanted items down drains, sinks and toilets can result in homeowners incurring expensive plumbing bills to unblock wastewater pipes on the property.
It is the property owner’s responsibility to maintain and repair all wastewater pipes and fittings in a property, up to and including the point of connection with our wastewater system.
If you experience a blockage within your toilets or drains, please contact a licenced plumber.
If you suspect a blockage outside your property, please contact Council on 1300 692 247. We’ll ask you a few questions to help us determine the appropriate course of action. If we think the problem is in our pipes, we’ll send someone out to investigate and fix the issue, but if we suspect the blockage is in your system, we’ll advise you to contact a licenced plumber.
What more can you do?
- Use a sink strainer so small food scraps can be easily caught and transferred to your general waste bin
- Have a waste bin in your bathroom and/or toilet, so sanitary items can be easily disposed of
- Let fats, oils and grease cool and solidify before putting in your general waste bin, soak up excess with a paper towel
- Educate your friends and family about the effects of unwanted items in the sewerage system
- The Paintback scheme operates at Portsmith and Smithfield Transfer Stations – dispose of up to 100L of acceptable architectural and decorative paint for FREE
- And don’t forget that you can drop household chemicals, paints and oil at your nearest Council Transfer Station for FREE (conditions apply). Visit our Accepted Items page for further information.