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What happens when you flush a toilet?

It’s only when they start exhibiting signs of a problem that people put any thought into their toilets.

But not us!

Got toilet problems? No worries. Help is here.

Read on to find out what happens when you flush a toilet, and how to solve any toilet flushing woes you might face.

Quick facts about toilets

Here are some interesting facts we bet you didn’t know about toilets!

  • According to the World Toilet Organisation (yes, it exists), the average person uses a toilet 2,500 times year, or six to eight times daily
  • It’s believed that toilet paper was invented in China in the 6th Century
  • Mobile phones have 18 times bacteria than toilet handles!
  • Toilets have added 20 years to the human lifespan over the past 200 years

There are also some dire facts about toilets and sanitation from around the world:

  • The WTO indicates that about 1000 children died due to poor sanitation in 2013
  • Unsafe sanitation accounts for 7% of global diseases, and 20% of child deaths
  • 2.5 billion people do not have access to a clean and safe toilet

So it might seem funny to talk so much about toilets, but when you look at the more dire sanitation facts, we can truly understand how important toilets are to our health.

What happens when you flush the toilet?

This may not be the most sophisticated topics to talk about, but it does solve a lot of human problems – health, sanitation, environmental, engineering, social, even personal.

We really ought to be grateful to the engineers and scientists who developed the toilet and its flushing mechanism.

References indicate that the first flushable toilet was invented by John Harington in 1596.

The once-communal outhouses, chamber pots, and even holes in the ground that served as “toilets” were later transformed into the much more appealing designs that we are so used to today.

So, what happens when you flush the toilet?

  • Simply, when a toilet is flushed, water and waste are moved through the toilet trap (the wide pipe that goes into the floor or wall)
  • It then flows into the main drain to exit the house, all thanks to your sewer line
  • This sewer line is connected to the collector sewer line which drains waste away from your home

If your loo is connected to a city’s wastewater treatment plant, then it gets there. Most solid waste will disintegrate as it travels through the pipes. At the wastewater treatment plant, waste goes through different processes of filtering and pumping.

Once rubbish, organic matter, and chemicals are removed, the clean water is then:

  • Released into the environment
  • Disinfected and then supplied as recycled water

It’s really quite amazing when you think about it. Find out more from Melbourne Water.

How does your toilet cause plumbing problems?

Common toilet problems when you flush

Everything that goes with your waste, including the tissue paper that you may have thrown inside the toilet bowl, will go down the pipes.

But sometimes, this will not always easily pass through. This may cause your toilet to clog.

If one day you find your toilet is leaking, constantly running, or you’re suffering from back-up, the most likely cause is an obstruction in one of the pipes connected to your loo.  

What could have caused a blockage?

  • A solid object flushed down the toilet and entered the drain line, causing a partial blockage
  • A swag or dip in the pipeline that allows solids and waste to settle and eventually obstruct the line
  • Roots in the line that may have entered through unsealed joints or cracks in the pipe, impeding water flow

Our advice

The lavatory is intended for two things only, and one of those is toilet paper (we think you’ll be able to figure out the other!)

If you have to dispose of wet wipes, paper towel, hair, or any other object, use the rubbish bin – not the toilet bowl.

Call an emergency plumber today

Get quick and efficient plumbing solutions for your dirty concerns with Watermaster Plumbing today!

Let the pros handle emergency plumbing problems.

Our experienced and licensed tradesmen have been delivering comprehensive plumbing services to homes and businesses all across south-east Melbourne for more than 20 years.

Call us if you are in need of a certified emergency plumber who can provide any of the following services:

  • Plumbing maintenance
  • Repairs
  • Installations

There’s nothing our experienced team hasn’t done (or seen!) before.

Leaking pipes? Clogged drains? Slow flushing toilets? Call our Sandringham plumbers now on 1300 156 650.

Alternatively, fill in this form and we will get in touch.

2023-09-25T02:09:28+00:00 July 31st, 2018|Blog|