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Sustainable Curiosities and Novelties: Flushable Toilet Paper Tube

Aqua tube flushable toilet paper roll

Aqua Tube Toilet Paper Tube: photographed in grass because it's "green"

Consider the fate of the common Toilet Paper Tube: destined to be violently ripped and separated from its Toilet Paper child whom it has cradled and supported since the day of TP’s birth manufacture. While TP flushes merrily downstream headed for the rapture of sustainable biodegradation, the Mother Tube is forgotten, abandoned, tossed…then forced to travel alone, void of greenness, to a dark and desolate landfill populated by despised, low-life non-recyclables.

Well, no more. Because THIS Tube is flushable. THIS Tube shall not be left behind, but shall be safely flushed with its beloved TP, where they can biodegrade and return to our earth naturally. Together.

Many thanks to Constance Ward at Thought Leader Zone, who found this Sustainable Curiosity in her Marseille, France lodgings while attending World Water Forum 6. Somehow she knew we’d like it!

Note: This item has not been deemed flushable by Pat and Dan. Also, since we Don’t Flush the Baby Wipes, should we flush the tubes?

Sustainable Curiosities and Novelties: In which we present the oddball, assorted knick-knacks, inventions and ideas for more sustainable Earth occupation by humankind. Or something like that. Submissions welcome, contact the Thirsty in Suburbia “Curator” here.

Under the Hood of my Ugly ’80s Toilet

Hey, they don’t make ’em like this anymore! Thank heavens! This is my hideous 1980s-vintage gold toilet. For a variety of reasons, I’m not in a position to get rid of the 3.5-gallon flusher just now. I have, however, modded it “under the hood” to use less water. (I don’t know the total amount of water these add-ons save; does anyone know how I would determine this?)

Anyway…first, I’ve replaced the constantly-kinking flush chain with a piece of rubbery cord that I pulled off of a retail pants hangers. Try this freebie hack if, like me, you get leaking water due to the flapper not seating firmly when the chain tangles. (Look for a hanger like this one.)

Next: see that blue thing attached to the fill tube? This is a clever little device that saves water by equalizing the bowl/tank fill rate. Most toilet bowls are finished filling long before the tank is full. While the fill valve continues filling the tank, it also continues overfilling the bowl, and the excess bowl water goes over the siphon trap and down the drain, wasted. With this adjustable gizmo the tank and bowl both finish filling at exactly the same time. (I got mine from eBay, but here’s a similar one.)

Next…Julie O’Fee, a friend from the UK, sent me a Thames Water giveaway Save-a-Flush which saves up to one litre per flush, according to their website. It’s a bag of crystals made from a harmless silicone gel. Once you place it into your “cistern” within hours it swells up firmly against the sides of the tank.

With a little more room in the tank, I added the 20 oz. glass; it just sits there in the tank and when it’s flushed the water stays in the glass and the whole deal displaces that additional amount of water.

So this will suffice as I continue to dream of my future Euro-styled dual flush. Now if only I could do something about the color…

First You Swim and Then You Die

And then you “swim” again. The ironically-named goldfish Lucky has come to his end at a pink-toilet watery grave, but not before receiving a proper eulogy and sendoff from little Maya before the final flush. The off-camera Mom is having a hard time dealing with the death, apparently!

Viral Challenge for Wastewater Maintenance Staff

No, we don’t mean tiny virus contaminants, we’re talkin’ viral video.

If you’re among the millions of viewers who sent the hysterical “Will it Blend?” videos to the top of the viral charts, then you’ll realize that this video from St. Thomas is a low-rent copycat of the concept. St. Thomas Creations presents “Will it Flush?” to demonstrate the unprecedented power of their toilet by irresponsibly flushing voluminous amounts of items which have no business traveling down a trap. (A quick glance at the number of “views” for this video indicates that the me-too “Flushers” have been much less successful than the trendsetting “Blenders.”)

And not even a weak “don’t try this at home” disclaimer! So, wastewater professionals, if you’re ever been mystified by a mysterious, sudden spate of golf balls, chess pieces, whole hot dogs or carrots clogging your filters, now you know.

A few selected comments from the video’s YouTube page and featured Buzzfeed post:

I feel like this toilet could have saved many of the drug dealers in movies….Perfect for disposing of all those pesky chess pieces you’ve got lying around…it’s like the Will It Blend of Plumbing…let’s try Dad’s keys!!…well there’s only one way to find out for sure!…Can it flush the stimulus package?…Ok, this did not work with my toilet!! wtf do i do!?!?!…but can it flush another super toilet?…seriously hope they didn’t really flush all that down into the systems…you’re gunna get all these dumbasses seeing what they can really flush down it now…..who really has a crap the size of 18 hot dogs!!!