Drains, sinks and toilets

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:

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Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid) Can be placed in your general waste bin. Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pile

Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pile

Search for a specialised hazardous waste removal or fats, oil & grease removal business 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  Ask your local chemist if they will accept medications
Drop off for FREE at one of Council's Transfer Stations 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 down the toilet, sink or drain  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 Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drainWaste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid) 
Coffee grounds

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pile Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)
Condoms

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Cotton buds and cotton balls

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Fabric and clothing

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Household fats, oils and grease

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Drop off for FREE at one of Council's Transfer StationsSearch for a specialised hazardous waste removal or fats, oil & grease removal business

Vegetable scraps including pasta and rice

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pile

Meat, seafood, shells and bones

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Household chemicals (kerosene, cleaning products, antibacterial agents, herbicides, pesticides)

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Drop off for FREE at one of Council's Transfer StationsSearch for a specialised hazardous waste removal or fats, oil & grease removal business

Hair (human and animal)

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pile

Kitty litter

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Medications

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Ask your local chemist if they will accept medications 
Motor oils and grease

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Drop off for FREE at one of Council's Transfer StationsSearch for a specialised hazardous waste removal or fats, oil & grease removal business

Nappies

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Paper towels

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pileWaste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Paints and solvents (turpentine)

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Drop off for FREE at one of Council's Transfer StationsSearch for a specialised hazardous waste removal or fats, oil & grease removal business

Petrol

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Search for a specialised hazardous waste removal or fats, oil & grease removal business

Pool chemicals

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Drop off for FREE at one of Council's Transfer Stations

Produce stickers (on fruit)

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)

Sanitary items

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Waste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)


Tea bags

Do not dispose of down the toilet, sink or drain

Can be placed in your compost bin/garden pileWaste item can be placed in your general bin (red or green lid)


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.
EVENTS, NEWS & REMINDERS STRAIGHT TO YOUR DEVICE
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EVENTS, NEWS & REMINDERS STRAIGHT TO YOUR DEVICE
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Last updated: 08 August 2019