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‘Flushable’ Wipes Are a Lie

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a nice white fluffy wipe popping out of a container

Photo: John Arehart (Shutterstock)

“Flushable” wipes sound great, in theory. Use them like a baby wipe—on your own grown-up butt, if you want—but no need to toss something with a smear of poop on it into your garbage can. Just flush, and away it goes. But is this really a good idea? Probably not.

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The companies that make flushable wipes are adamant that they dissolve after flushing. Cottonnelle has a web page dedicated to this assertion, stating that the wipes are “made for your pipes” and that they “immediately start to break down after flushing.” The page features an endorsement from a wastewater utility saying that the wipes are “compatible with our system.”

But wipes make up a significant portion of the “fatbergs” that clog city sewers. Ordinary non-flushable wipes are certainly among them, but cities including New York are suspicious of the supposedly flushable ones. NYC’s “respect the flush” campaign tells residents to trash all wet wipes, whether they’re labeled “flushable” or not. The Environmental Protection Agency doesn’t call out flushable wipes by name, but they do say not to flush any type of wipe, only toilet paper.

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In short: I absolutely would not flush a flushable wipe, no matter what the label says.

It only takes a little bit of reading to see a few flaws in the wipe companies’ protests about being flushable. For example, Cottonelle clearly makes an effort to differentiate themselves from those other brands of so-called flushable wipes, which aren’t nearly as flushable as theirs. This suggests that even the makers of flushable wipes know that the word “flushable” on a label should not be taken at face value.

Then there is the warning that you’ll find in fine print on the back of some of these packages: “For best results, flush only one or two wipes at a time.” So the flushability of the wipes is in fact pretty limited: one or two wipes, of certain brands, under the right conditions, may break down. (Cottonelle tested theirs with a one-hour pre-soak and six minutes of stirring time.)

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So even if the wipe manufacturers are right that the wipes are sometimes flushable, that doesn’t mean that flushable wipes are always flushable. Better to stick with what cities and the EPA recommend and only flush the four P’s: poop, pee, puke, and [toilet] paper.

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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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Apple will replace AirPods Pro for free with faulty noise cancellation, static or crackling

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Today, exactly one year after Apple first launched the AirPods Pro — and thus the same day the very first AirPods Pro owners will see their one-year warranties expire — Apple has launched a repair program that offers free repairs or replacements for another whole year if your AirPods Pro experience issues with noise cancellation or static.

Specifically, Apple will fix:

Crackling or static sounds that increase in loud environments, with exercise or while talking on the phone

Active Noise Cancellation not working as expected, such as a loss of bass sound, or an increase in background sounds, such as street or airplane noise

Apple says only a “small percentage of AirPods Pro” are affected by the issues, but it apparently wasn’t just an early batch — Apple says affected units were manufactured “before October 2020,” meaning every AirPods Pro ever made might be eligible. That’s quite a recall if so. Apple says it will repair faulty AirPods Pro for two years after you first buy them.

We’ve heard complaints about degraded noise cancellation before, and at least one Verge editor has replaced their AirPods Pro under warranty. It’s nice to hear that Apple isn’t just cutting buyers off as soon as that warranty expires.

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This 55″ 4K TCL Smart TV Hangs on Your Wall for $200

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

TCL 55″ S434 4K Smart TV | $200 | Best Buy

Best Buy has an insane deal going for a brand new 55″ 4K TCL smart TV. It’s the S434, which is pretty baseline for TCL’s lineup, but at just $200, there’s little to complain about. TCL’s panels are plenty sharp and accurate, and with this set, you’ll get HDR10 compliance for enhanced color and brightness in supported games and video content. This model has Android TV onboard for all your app needs, and with an included voice remote, all your favorite content is just a shout away with the help of Google Assistant.

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