Bamboo toilet paper has become a popular alternative to traditional toilet paper for those looking to make their bathrooms more eco-friendly. Made from renewable resources, bamboo toilet paper is more biodegradable and has a lower carbon footprint than regular toilet paper.
Even if bamboo might be more environmentally friendly, there is always the fear of introducing new materials to your plumbing system as plumbing issues can be a complete nightmare. This is especially true when the possible outcome could be a blocked drain.
So, will the switch to bamboo have you calling your local plumber sooner than expected or is it safe to be flushing down the toilet?
In this article we cover whether bamboo toilet paper blocks drains
The biggest issue that arises for traditional toilet paper is its extensive impact on the environment.
In recent years, more research has gone into shedding light on the problems surrounding the production of toilet paper. It is estimated that the average person can use anywhere between 80 to 130 rolls of toilet paper per year. This leads to the loss of approximately 700 million trees annually, therefore playing a big role in global deforestation and climate issues.
From this knowledge came alternatives like recycled toilet paper and bamboo toilet paper.
Recycled toilet paper uses materials such as recycled books and office papers combined with water and bleach to create toilet paper. The production of this product uses approximately 50 percent less energy than traditional toilet paper. However, some recycled toilet paper brands use chemicals that are not ideal for septic systems in the bleaching process.
Bamboo is the fastest growing plant in the world, easily growing almost three feet per day.
Bamboo is becoming a popular alternative in the toilet paper industry as it is 100% biodegradable, and the fibres create soft and strong paper. Also, if sourced responsibly, bamboo is far more environmentally friendly as the plant absorbs approximately five times the amount of carbon dioxide that a tree does.
The production process for bamboo toilet paper releases 30% less greenhouse gases than traditional toilet paper.
But will bamboo toilet paper block toilets?
Generally speaking, bamboo toilet paper can still block your drains if too much is used. The real question is whether it is less likely to block drains than regular toilet paper?
Regular toilet paper is made to be biodegradable. However the more premium, ultra-thick or heavy-duty the product gets, the longer it can take to break down. This is usually when a clogged toilets can happen, especially when there are large amounts of paper being flushed down the drain.
Bamboo toilet paper is designed to be highly capable of dissolving in water and often begins to break down as it is flushed. Bamboo fibres are, by nature, softer than average wood fibres and therefore the water movement caused by flushing is often enough to start disintegrating the paper. So, in this regard bamboo toilet paper is definitely less likely to block drains.
However, being bamboo doesn't mean you can use more of it. Like other toilet papers, if large amounts of bamboo toilet paper are used often, there is the potential for paper clumps to form and block the pipes. Luckily, it is both soft and strong, meaning you should never need too much.
Bamboo toilet paper is not a threat to plumbing systems, in fact it is probably the best option for the environment and for sewage systems. This is especially true for septic tanks, if you have one. The bacteria in these tanks can dissolve bamboo toilet paper very easily as there are no additives in the product. Often all that is left at the bottom of the tank is a layer of bamboo fibre.
So, if you were thinking of making the switch to bamboo toilet paper, rest assured that it should have little to no effect on your plumbing system.