Last Updated Jun 2, 2010 · Written by Jaclyn Fitzgerald
Going to the toilet should be a simple everyday task but it can be a nightmare if your toilet or drain is blocked. Here’s what you can do about unblocking toilet drains.
The toilet will block and become practically unusable if something is flushed that shouldn’t be. Such items that can block the toilet include excessive toilet paper, sanitary items, kitty litter, or even your kids flushing things “just to see if they’ll go down”. Another reason the toilet can block is if the larger drain servicing the toilet is blocked by an item such as tree roots.
In some cases, you will be unable to unblock the toilet drain yourself. In this case, you will need to call out a licensed plumber to unblock the toilet for you (see plumbers to find one in your area). They have specialised equipment such as snakes/electrical eels, high pressure water machines and other equipment in order to clear your toilet of the blockage and make it free flowing again. They can also use drain cameras or CCTV inspection equipment in order to locate the blockage. Exactly what they use to unblock the toilet drain will depend on if you are on a main sewage systems or if you have a self contained system such as a septic system.
If the blockage is not serious, you may be able to unblock the toilet yourself. One way of doing so is by using the trusty plunger. Simply place the plunger into the toilet, and push down hard 5-6 times. The rapid pushing or plunging action will force the water in the bowl down and hopefully clear the blockage.
You could also use a mop in the same way as a plunger – rapidly pushing the head of the mop against the bottom of the bowl in order to force through whatever is causing the blockage. Another option is to use a coat hanger to reach around the s bed and hopefully hook the blockage and pull it out. This can be a gross process so don’t use it if you have a weak stomach!
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