Must-Know Tips for Unclogging a Toilet

Image courtesy of Gary J. Wood/Flickr.

Image courtesy of Gary J. Wood/Flickr.

We’ve all been faced with a clogged toilet. Chances are your first move when this happens is to reach for the plunger. This method can work, but do you know the most effective way to clear a clogged toilet?

These tips can help, but if you aren’t confident in clearing your toilet yourself, contact us. We offer toilet repair on Long Island.

Step 1: Stop Flushing!

When your toilet is clogged, one of the worst things you can do is flush it over and over. When you do this you risk causing the water to overflow, which will make the problem bigger and harder to deal with.

Step 2: Identify the Problem

First, is the clog due to an object that fell into the toilet or got stuck in the drain? If you’re a parent, you know there’s a possibility your toddler dropped something in the bowl. If you can see and reach the item, remove it with your hand.

Step 3: Try a Drain Cleaner

Minor clogs can often be cleared with a commercial drain cleaner. When used incorrectly, drain cleaner can actually damage your pipes. While it may unclog the toilet, it could be causing more extensive damage.

Make sure you choose a cleaner that is labeled as safe for toilets and that doesn’t contain harsh chemicals that will damage your system. Always use chemicals as directed.

Step 4: Use the Plunger

Now you can reach for that plunger, as long as it is a ball-shaped or flanged model. These two are best for toilets. Put the plunger over the drain to form a seal and then push the plunger down firmly. Continue with quick, short pushes by moving the plunger straight up and down.

When you think the blockage is removed, flush the toilet and see if it drains. If it doesn’t, the clog may be further in your system.

Step 5: Use a Plumber’s Snake

If the plunger method doesn’t work, it’s likely that the blockage is further down the drain or even in your piping system. A plumber’s snake can help you reach it and safely remove it. Use a snake from your hardware store and read the directions carefully before you use it.

If none of these options work, the clog could be particularly stubborn or you could have a damaged toilet or plumbing system. When you can’t unclog a toilet, contact a professional.

We specialize in toilet repair on Long Island and one of our technicians can use professional equipment to clear your toilet.

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