Does Bleach Dissolve Toilet Paper? Find Out!

It is critical for toilet paper to disintegrate if you plan to flush it down modern plumbing infrastructure. Toilet paper that does not dissolve will clog modern septic systems and contribute to significant sewer overflows that can contain human waste, especially when it rains.

No, toilet paper does not dissolve in bleach. Instead, you can try magnesium sulfate, baking soda with vinegar, or other household chemicals to dissolve toilet paper faster than water will.

Most types will eventually dissolve. But increasing infrastructure demands can stress sewer lines, and slowly dissolving paper could cause a massive clog. Read on for the best dissolving techniques.

Bleach and Toilet Paper

Manufacturers bleach wood pulp during toilet paper production with hydrogen peroxide or chlorine. However, that is done to make the product whiter and not to dissolve it.

Chlorine bleaches, found in many household products, perform a similar function and are used to make clothes, curtains, and any other linen appear whiter and cleaner. However, cups of bleach are not of much value to you if you want to unclog your drain or toilet because bleach is not an acid. Bleach is alkaline, making it more practical for removing dirt, oil, grime, and stains.

While bleach might assist in tearing it into smaller shreds, those smaller shreds will end up clogging your plumbing system even more instead of opening it up, making it harder for the paper to flush. The problem with clogs is not having enough water passing through the system!  

Will Toilet Paper Eventually Dissolve?

Yes, toilet paper is biodegradable under the right circumstances or when using the correct techniques to dissolve it. You can also adopt numerous other methods to dissolve it.

Success is measured by how comprehensively you can disintegrate the cellulose fibers that make up the bulk of flushable toilet paper. Its cellulose fibers are designed to hold together well enough for you to clean yourself in the dry.

However, once those cellulose fibers are exposed to any moisture level, they begin to disintegrate. With the right amount of water and some assistance from other chemicals, you can dissolve those cellulose fibers completely.

The time it takes to dissolve can range between 11 and 128 minutes, depending on fiber density, roughness, turbidity, and the amount of water used to try and dissolve it.

However, the efficiency or speed of the job often hinges on the chemicals used to help dissolve the paper.

How To Dissolve Toilet Paper

You can dissolve toilet paper using a wide range of chemicals, many of which are readily available as other products in the household. 

Depending on the extent of the job you need to do, you might have to purchase a specific chemical product from your local DIY store. The good thing is that you will also have access to a wide range on those shelves.

Magnesium Sulfate

Magnesium sulfate, more commonly known as Epsom Salt, is readily available at online vendors and highly recommended for dissolving toilet paper when the plumbing is clogged. Pour a cup of Epsom Salt into the toilet bowl before adding a bucket of warm water into the bowl. 

You will be so amazed at how effective the chemical reaction is that it will feel like you have just performed a magic trick.

Baking Soda and Vinegar

Baking soda and vinegar is a commonly used household remedy for a blocked drain or  toilet pipe, which also makes it valuable for dissolving toilet paper when your sewer system is clogged. 

The best technique is to drop a cup of baking soda into the toilet bowl before free pouring vinegar into the bowl until you see the baking soda starting to froth and bubble.

Without forcing the issue, you can then sit and wait for a few minutes while the solution gets to work on the toilet paper and any other grime that might contribute to the system’s clog. You might want to apply it more than once for the best results. 

Depending on the nature of the clog, you will not always get what you need out of this process.

Other Chemical Products

Numerous specialized products are available at online vendors and DIY stores specifically designed to treat septic tanks. That also means dissolving everything you would ordinarily find in a septic tank, like toilet paper.

Compelling examples include:

Most of these products feature natural bacteria and advanced enzymes capable of breaking down everything in their path. That would include things like paper, protein, oil, and grease. 

The beauty of chemical products like these is that you only have to use them once a month, which is normally enough to avoid clogs altogether. With these chemical products, you usually are just one flush away from dissolving all the toilet paper that you use in your household.

Conclusion

Something often taken for granted when your plumbing system clogs up is that there is usually more contributing to that pipe blockage. While a toilet paper clog can undoubtedly contribute, it is almost always merely a symptom.

The water used to flush toilet paper down the system is usually enough to break it down because the product has actually been designed to break down whenever it comes into contact with significant levels of moisture.

Toilet paper usually only fails to break down properly because it has had enough contact with water in the system. A blockage that is not necessarily related to toilet paper will prevent the adequate flow of water through the system, and that is where the problems emerge.

Prevention is always better than cure. The best way to prevent the problems associated with clogs is only to use toilet paper. Avoid any disposable commercial product that hasn’t been designed to flush down the toilet, such as baby wipes, paper towel, or tissue paper. 

The more fragile the paper, the easier it will dissolve.