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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 13, 2004
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    City of delusion in the state of total denial
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    8,503

    Default When the plunger fails: best ways to unclog the toilet

    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.)
    "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep."
    - Harry Dresden

    Horse Isle 2: Legend of the Esrohs LifeCycle Breeding and competition MMORPG



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct. 21, 1999
    Location
    Rochester, NY
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    12,225

    Default

    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.
    Originally Posted by Alagirl
    We just love to shame poor people...when in reality, we are all just peasants.



  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep. 24, 2004
    Location
    Piedmont Triad, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,179

    Default

    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.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun. 24, 2005
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    8,196

    Default

    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.
    You can't fix stupid-Ron White


    1 members found this post helpful.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec. 2, 2004
    Location
    Eastern Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    1,469

    Default

    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.



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan. 28, 2003
    Location
    Hollywood, but not the one where they have the Oscars!
    Posts
    7,016

    Default

    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.
    "You can't really debate with someone who has a prescient invisible friend"
    carolprudm



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug. 14, 2000
    Location
    Rochester,NY,USA
    Posts
    7,306

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by JanM View Post
    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.
    Sue
    Back in my day, we didn't have as many warning labels because people weren't so dang stupid!



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2002
    Location
    Calera, AL
    Posts
    1,901

    Default

    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.
    "Dogs are man's best friend. Cats are man's adorable little serial killer." -- theoatmeal.com



  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep. 5, 2004
    Location
    Charleston, SC
    Posts
    1,272

    Default

    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.
    Fullcirclefarmsc.com



  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug. 12, 2001
    Location
    Trailer Trash Ammy!
    Posts
    19,520

    Default

    One trick I read online that worked for me once was dishwashing liquid. Pour about 1 cup down there and wait.
    "The standard you walk by is the standard you accept."--Lt. Gen. David Morrison, Austalian Army Chief



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