A clogged toilet is one of the most common and frustrating plumbing problems that can occur in any home. Not only does it prevent you from using the toilet, but it can also cause unpleasant odors, water damage and health hazards.
Fortunately, there are several ways to unclog a toilet without calling a plumber or spending a lot of money.
In this article, we will show you how to unclog a toilet using different methods, such as plungers, soap, baking soda, vinegar and more. We will also provide you with some tips on how to prevent toilet clogs in the future.
What Causes a Toilet to Clog?
There are many possible reasons why your toilet might get clogged, but the most common ones are:
- Too much toilet paper: Using too much toilet paper or flushing non-flushable items such as wipes, diapers, tampons or cotton balls can create a blockage in the drain pipe.
- Low water pressure: If the water pressure in your home is low, the flush may not be powerful enough to clear the waste and paper from the bowl.
- Hard water deposits: Over time, minerals from hard water can build up on the walls of the pipes and reduce the diameter of the drain. This can make it harder for the waste to flow through and cause clogs.
- Foreign objects: Sometimes, objects such as toys, toothbrushes, pens or keys can accidentally fall into the toilet and get stuck in the trap or the pipe. These objects can act as a barrier and prevent the water from draining properly.
How to Unclog a Toilet with a Plunger
The plunger is one of the most effective and widely used tools for unclogging a toilet. A plunger works by creating a vacuum and pressure that dislodges the clog and pushes it through the pipe. Here are the steps to use a plunger to unclog a toilet:
- Choose the right plunger: There are different types of plungers available, but for toilets, you should use a flange plunger. This is a plunger that has an extension at the bottom that fits into the toilet drain. A flange plunger creates a better seal and suction than a regular cup plunger.
- Prepare the toilet: If the toilet bowl is full of water, you may need to remove some of it with a cup or a bucket to prevent splashing. If the bowl is empty or low on water, you may need to add some water to cover the plunger head. You should also wear gloves and protective clothing to avoid contact with germs and bacteria.
- Insert the plunger: Place the plunger over the drain hole and make sure it covers it completely. Push down gently at first to expel any air from the plunger and create a vacuum. Then pull up sharply to create pressure and disturb the clog. Repeat this motion several times until you hear a gurgling sound or see the water start to drain.
- Flush the toilet: Once you have cleared the clog, flush the toilet to check if it drains normally. If not, you may need to plunge again or try another method. If it does, flush it 2-4 times more to remove any remaining debris from the pipe.
How to Unclog a Toilet with Soap and Hot Water
If you don’t have a plunger or if plunging doesn’t work, you can try using soap and hot water to unclog your toilet. Soap acts as a lubricant that can help slide the clog through the pipe. Hot water can help dissolve or soften some types of clogs, such as grease or organic matter. Here are the steps to use soap and hot water to unclog your toilet:
- Add some soap: Pour about 1/4 cup of dish soap, shampoo or slivers of bar soap into the toilet bowl. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes so it can reach the clog and lubricate it.
- Heat some water: Heat about 4 liters of water on the stove or in a kettle until it is hot but not boiling. Boiling water can damage your pipes or crack your porcelain bowl.
- Pour in the water: Carefully pour the hot water into the toilet bowl from waist level or higher. This will create more force and help push the clog through. Wait for 15-20 minutes for the soap and water to work on the clog.
- Flush the toilet: After waiting, flush the toilet to see if it drains normally. If not, you may need to repeat this method or try another one. If it does, flush it again to rinse out any soap residue.
How to Unclog a Toilet with Baking Soda and Vinegar
Another natural and chemical-free way to unclog your toilet is using baking soda and vinegar. These two ingredients react with each other and produce carbon dioxide gas, which can create bubbles and pressure that can break up the clog. Here are the steps to use baking soda and vinegar to unclog your toilet:
- Empty the bowl: If the toilet bowl is full of water, you may need to remove some of it with a cup or a bucket. You should leave about 2 inches of water in the bowl for this method to work.
- Add baking soda: Pour 1 cup of baking soda into the toilet bowl and let it sink to the bottom.
- Add vinegar: Pour 1 cup of vinegar into the toilet bowl and watch the fizzing reaction. The bubbles will help loosen the clog and lift it up.
- Wait for 30 minutes: Let the baking soda and vinegar mixture sit in the bowl for 30 minutes to work on the clog. Do not flush or add any more water during this time.
- Flush the toilet: After 30 minutes, flush the toilet to see if it drains normally. If not, you may need to repeat this method or try another one. If it does, flush it again to remove any remaining baking soda or vinegar.
How to Prevent Toilet Clogs
To avoid dealing with clogged toilets in the future, you should follow some simple tips that can help prevent toilet clogs from happening in the first place. Some of these tips are:
1. Use less toilet paper
Try to use only as much toilet paper as you need and avoid flushing multiple layers at once. You can also opt for thinner or biodegradable toilet paper that dissolves faster in water.
2. Don’t flush non-flushable items
Never flush anything other than human waste and toilet paper down your toilet. Items such as wipes, diapers, tampons, cotton balls, dental floss, hair, food scraps or plastic can easily clog your pipes or damage your septic system.
3. Don’t flush foreign objects
Keep your toilet lid closed when not in use and store any small objects such as toys, toothbrushes, pens or keys away from your toilet. These objects can accidentally fall into your toilet and cause a blockage.
4. Maintain your pipes
Regularly check your pipes for any leaks, cracks or corrosion that can affect your Possible continuation:
water pressure or flow. You can also use a water softener to prevent hard water deposits from building up on your pipes. If you notice any problems with your pipes, contact a professional plumber to fix them as soon as possible.
5. Clean your toilet regularly
Use a toilet brush and a mild cleaner to scrub your toilet bowl and remove any dirt, stains or bacteria that can cause odors or clogs. You can also pour some vinegar or baking soda into the bowl and let it sit for 10 minutes to disinfect and deodorize your toilet. Flush the toilet with plenty of water after cleaning.
RELATED ARTICLE: How to Use a Drain Snake to Unclog Drains
What is the best liquid to unclog toilet?
There are a number of different liquids that can be used to unclog a toilet, but some of the most effective include:
- Dish soap: Dish soap is a mild detergent that can help to break down grease and other organic matter that may be causing the clog.
- Vinegar: Vinegar is a natural acid that can dissolve mineral deposits and other buildup that may be clogging the toilet.
- Baking soda: Baking soda is a base that can react with vinegar to create a fizzing action that can help to dislodge the clog.
- Plumbing chemicals: Plumbing chemicals are available at most hardware stores and can be very effective at clearing clogs. However, they should be used with caution, as they can be harmful to your pipes if not used properly.
Should I flush a blocked toilet?
No, you should not flush a blocked toilet. Flushing can force the clog further down the pipes, making it even more difficult to clear. Instead, you should try to clear the clog using one of the methods listed above.
Is it OK to leave a clogged toilet overnight?
It is not recommended to leave a clogged toilet overnight. The clog could worsen, and the water could overflow and damage your bathroom. If you are unable to clear the clog yourself, you should call a plumber as soon as possible.
Can a toilet be permanently clogged?
A toilet can be permanently clogged if the clog is severe or if the pipes are damaged. However, most clog
A clogged toilet is a common and annoying problem that can happen to anyone. You don’t have to panic or call a plumber right away. There are many ways to unclog a toilet using simple tools and ingredients that you probably have at home.
Whether you use a plunger, soap, baking soda, vinegar or any other method, you can clear your toilet clog in no time and restore your bathroom to normal. Just remember to follow the steps carefully and be patient.
If none of the methods work for you or if you have a recurring or severe clog, you may need to seek professional help from a plumber. You should also take some preventive measures to avoid clogging your toilet in the future and keep it clean and functional.
We hope this article has helped you learn how to unclog a toilet and solve your plumbing problem. Please share it with your friends and family who might need it. Thank you for reading!