PDA

View Full Version : When the plunger fails: best ways to unclog the toilet



Renn/aissance
Mar. 31, 2013, 03:39 PM
Yesterday the toilet clogged, I plunged it, it was fine, no big deal. Today it clogged again, I plunged it, no success. Whatever yesterday's problem was seems therefore not to be totally fixed. I've heard about the baking soda and vinegar method, the clothes hanger method, and the Draino method (I'd prefer something more environmentally friendly than the latter.) Any verdict on The Best Way? (I have no idea what is clogging it but we are all adults here so I doubt it's something that wasn't supposed to be flushed.)

Louise
Mar. 31, 2013, 03:43 PM
Well, if it's the obvious, sometimes just waiting it out can solve the problem. Things break up after they have soaked for a while. That method has worked around here a couple of times, but, I do have another toilet I can use while I'm waiting (and, it can take up to 48 hours.) You could get a plumber's snake, but I understand that, used incorrectly, they can cause some serious damage. The only other thing I know of is to call the plumber.

hosspuller
Mar. 31, 2013, 04:16 PM
Even adults can have an Oops moment. I found a make-up brush in our toilet.

While waiting for something to soak awhile, check that the tank is giving a full flush. Check the water level against the water stain in the tank. Second, watch the water valve as it flushes, It might be closing too early or not opening fully.

JanM
Mar. 31, 2013, 04:28 PM
Don't use Drano is toilets-it says so on the label, and they're not kidding. My mother almost blew up our house using Drano in the toilet.

It might not be the toilet itself, but the vent pipe. If the vent pipe has a bird's nest on top or something else blocking it, nothing will drain properly. And don't use Charmin-the stuff is loved by plumbers, because it clogs toilets, and isn't septic safe either. Use a septic safe brand, because it dissolves better (many regular 2 ply brands are septic safe, and it says so on the package). Call a plumber, because if the clogs continue, or it over flows you'll be in serious trouble.

draftdriver
Mar. 31, 2013, 04:29 PM
Are you on city services or a septic tank? If the former, is there any chance that there are roots blocking the line? If the latter, are other drains draining properly? Are there odd noises in, say the bath tub drain when you flush the toilet? You may need to have the septic tank pumped and the lines to the weeping bed checked.

mroades
Mar. 31, 2013, 04:32 PM
I have to say, I live alone, and still somehow, a facecloth ended up in there, I am quite sure I didn't PUT it in there. Of course the unfixable clog happened on Christmas, yeah that was cheap....not.

msj
Mar. 31, 2013, 04:58 PM
Don't use Drano is toilets-it says so on the label, and they're not kidding. My mother almost blew up our house using Drano in the toilet.

It might not be the toilet itself, but the vent pipe. If the vent pipe has a bird's nest on top or something else blocking it, nothing will drain properly. And don't use Charmin-the stuff is loved by plumbers, because it clogs toilets, and isn't septic safe either. Use a septic safe brand, because it dissolves better (many regular 2 ply brands are septic safe, and it says so on the package). Call a plumber, because if the clogs continue, or it over flows you'll be in serious trouble.

JanM is right about Charmin and septic tanks. :( I had a backup into the bathtub in 2nd bathroom. Called the septic people and they pulled out one huge clog.

Unfortunately I still use Charmin but am a bit more careful.

alabama
Mar. 31, 2013, 05:15 PM
I only use "septic tank safe" paper. They'll print that on the label.

My cats put things in my toilets - usually those things that I use to put my hair in a pony tail but sometimes it's a cat toy. *sigh* They also put them in the cat water and the cat food. Crazy animals.

In the Air
Mar. 31, 2013, 05:22 PM
half a gallon, more or less of white vinegar. Let stand for a couple of hours then flush. I use it for the toilet in the barn where there is no telling what the kids put down it. It has worked every time.

War Admiral
Mar. 31, 2013, 05:33 PM
One trick I read online that worked for me once was dishwashing liquid. Pour about 1 cup down there and wait.