Dealing With a Clogged Toilet
A clogged toilet is no fun for some very obvious reasons. Once you think you have a clogged toilet it is important that you act fast to keep the situation under control. Your first priority is to prevent the toilet from overflowing, which presents a different set of problems you’ll have to deal with.
Here are some things you can do to troubleshoot and hopefully solve your clogged toilet problem:
- First Turn off the water supply to the toilet. Locate the toilet shut-off valve normally behind the toilet near the floor and CAREFULLY turn it clockwise to shut off the water. (Be careful, these valves can become very stiff from lack of use, if you’re not careful you can break this delicate valve, then you won’t be able to turn off the water) Once the water is “off” no more water will be able to enter the toilet, hopefully you have now prevented the toilet from overflowing, the next step is to try and remove the clog.
- Second, get a good plunger. There are a lot of plungers to choose from, you want a plunger designed for toilets, not sinks. Toilet plungers are normally funnel shaped and have an additional plastic flange protruding from the bottom of the plunger.
- Now start plunging; with the plunger positioned over the hole at the bottom of the toilet, push up and down vigorously about 12 times. Be sure there is enough water in the toilet to cover the bottom of the plunger, if not, add water using a bucket to cover the plunger. (The water is necessary to help clear the clog) Use good powerful strokes and be careful of splash-back. (You should wear safety glasses…)
- Third, if plunging doesn’t work, try a toilet auger. You can rent or purchase a toilet auger at a hardware store. Follow the instructions on the auger, being VERY CAREFUL not to damage the finish of the toilet bowl. Depending on what is causing the clog, you may be able to “feel” the auger hitting something, it might even get stuck when it hits the clog so exercise caution so you don’t get the auger stuck inside the pipe.
- Fourth, if these options didn’t work it is time to call Plumbing Professors® 800-654-1300. Some toilet clogs are more serious than a plunger or hardware auger can solve, that’s when you need to call a professional. If you notice water backing up in other drains, or you hear other drains making weird sounds or gurgling, you may have a more serious problem in your main sewer line. Don’t delay, these can be serious problems that back-up into your home or business causing a real unsanitary mess.
Follow These Tips to Avoid a Clogged Toilet
- Never flush heavy paper products down the drain (this includes paper towels and tissues). Excess paper can clog the toilet and/or the whole sewer system. Make sure that any product you flush is specifically designed to disintegrate in water and is safe for plumbing systems and septic tanks.
- Take it easy on the toilet paper. Flushing large amounts can certainly lead to clogs.
- Teach kids what shouldn’t go down the toilet. After all, it can be tempting to watch an action figure go down a water slide! Toys are a common cause for clogs, so make sure kids keep them out of the toilet. Always leave the lid down, that will help prevent cell phones, tooth brushes, etc. from falling into the toilet.
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We are fully licensed and insured for all of your plumbing, water, sewer and drain needs. Our technicians are clean-cut, polite, friendly, arrive on-time and are background and drug tested for your peace of mind. We operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and we never charge extra for nights, weekends or holidays…EVER! For all of our work you are assured of option pricing; you will know the repair options we suggest and the price of each option BEFORE we do any work. You pick and approve the option you like best, only then do we do the work. Call the Plumbing Professors® toll free at 800-654-1300.