Yikes! No one likes a clogged toilet. What’s there to like about it. But it’s a situation you now have to deal with, no matter how messy!
So here’s how to unclog a toilet – fast! From simple methods to more complex ones, here’s 5 time-tested methods.
1. How to Unclog a Toilet with Baking Soda
To unclog a toilet with baking soda, it needs to work in combination with vinegar. Here’s the process. To create a chemical reaction that dissolves clogs formed by organic matter, pour a cup of baking soda along with two cups of vinegar into the toilet. You’ll notice a fizzing action when you do this. Before this, you should have at least half a gallon of hot water ready. But, please, note that it should be at about the same temperature as your cup of coffee. You don’t want it too hot or else you’ll crack the porcelain coating that’s used for your toilet, causing a bigger problem.
Once the baking soda and vinegar have been added to the toilet, it is time to pour in the hot water. Make sure you pour the water from a reasonable height, like from your waist high. This will give the hot water some momentum to help remove the clog. When you’re done, leave the mixture overnight and then flush. If your toilet still remains clogged after this, you might want to try another method or call a plumber.
2. How to Unclog a Toilet with Plunger
The classic, the tried and true, the plunger! To unclog a toilet with a plunger, do the following:
First, make sure you’re wearing a good pair of rubber gloves (the type that get to your elbows). This will protect yourself from germs you might come in contact with. Next, ensure that you don’t allow your toilet to overflow. Do not flush again if it doesn’t flush properly at first. Instead, it’s best to close the flapper.
To get to the flapper, open the tank’s lid and you’ll see a drain stopper that’s attached to a chain. Once you’ve done this, it’s important that you prepare your bathroom floor for a splash. Simply spread paper towels on the floor (old newspapers work too). This will keep things easier to handle in case anything splashes on the floor as you use the plunger.
Now it’s time to use the plunger. Here’s a pro-tip: before you use it, run the rubber end through hot water to make the rubber supple so it can work better. This will help it create better suction. Now insert the plunger and make sure it covers the hole completely but is also a bit submerged in the water. You want it submerged or else what you’ll be pushing and pulling will be air instead of water and that won’t create the necessary suction. Start pushing the plunger down slowly. Next, pull it up as sharply as you can without causing a splash. This would dislodge whatever is clogging your toilet. It might take a few tries (sometimes as much as a dozen or two) to work dislodge the blockage. If the clog is cleared, flush again just to confirm everything is working fine. If it does not flush freely, you might have to put a bit more elbow grease into it.
Note: Please, ensure that you aren’t dealing with a hard object like a toy clogging your toilet. If such is the case, you might want to try another method like using a plumber’s snake.
3. How to Unclog a Toilet With a Snake
No, this isn’t your pet snake you’re going to be using. We are talking about a plumber’s drain snake here. It is also known as an auger or flexible cleaning tool. Basically, it comes with an end that has a coil of wire that you can maneuver through the curves and turns in your drainage system to get to obstructions. The coil of wire has a protective rubber end to ensure it doesn’t damage things as you push and twist to get to an obstruction. Insert the snake end into the drain from the toilet bowl. Next, start twisting and pushing it in clockwise motion until you get to the obstruction.
Continue this action until you no longer feel any resistance, meaning you’ve dislodged the obstruction. Flush and observe if the flow is now normal. If it isn’t, then you might want to try another option: Using the auger in reverse. However, we recommend that you leave this (using the auger in reverse) to a professional plumber as you might have to remove the toilet as you go through this process from the opposite direction. Things can get quite messy if you get it wrong, so we won’t attempt to explain the process here.
If after trying this, your toilet is still clogged, it’s best you call a plumber. You’ve done your best, no one can say otherwise, but some jobs are just meant for professionals. Give your local plumbing expert a ring and let them handle it.