How to unblock your toilet?

We’ve all been there – the moment you press the flush and the water starts going up, instead of down. It’s a truly heartbreaking experience but don’t lose hope just yet – there are ways to fix it.

Finding out your toiler is blocked can really cause panic. But at this moment it’s especially important to avoid panicking, and calmly assemble your weapons.

You’ll need:

  • A plunger
  • Household gloves
  • Old newspaper or towels
  • Washing liquid/ bleach/caustic soda/drain unblocker.

Before you start your mission:

The first thing you need to do is turn off the water supply to your toilet. There should be a faucet behind the toilet, which allows you to stop the water but if you can’t find it, just turn off the water for the whole house. Better safe than sorry!

Next you need to check whether your toilet or outside drain is blocked. For outside drain you’ll probably want to call a specialist. If you can determine it’s the toilet, then it’s time to start working.

Before you begin, cover the floor around your toilet with the newspapers or towels you’ve prepared. Open the windows, to allow fresh air to flow into the bathroom. Put on your safety rubber gloves, read all the instructions of any products you might be using. It’s time to begin.

  1. Try the plunger

The plunger should always be your first call, and it’s most likely to work. If you’re just reading this article out of curiosity, not need, put a plunger on your shopping list, it’s always good to have one.

Run the plunger under hot water (be careful!) to soften it – this will allow for a better grip. The plunger needs to cover the toilet hole in full. Start pushing and pulling slowly, you should “feel the grip”. Increase the pushing and pulling, and proceed more vigorously, you should notice the water starting to drain out. Even if the water has drained out, the clog might still be there. Flush the toilet, and see if the water is draining with its normal speed. If not you’ll need to repeat the plunging action. You might need a few tries before the clog is completely cleared so don’t give up on the first try.

  1. Use a plumbing snake.

Another useful home tool you might consider buying is a plumbing snake. You’ll need a special toilet one, as regular ones might be too thin, and damage your toilet instead of helping. What you want to do with the auger is push it into the waste pipe until you reach the clog. Then you start twisting it to break the clog into smaller parts and help it slide through the pipe. The auger has a hook at the end to retrieve flushed objects, such as your kids’ toys.

  1. Make use of the wire coat hanger.

The principle here is the same as the plumbing snake, just low-budget. Unwind it so you are left with a long piece of wire and a hook at the end. Repeat the same actions as in method 2.

  1. Apply the hot water method.

Sometimes simple decisions can help. Try pouring hot water (use with caution!) from above waist height. Use the plunger just after.

Another method you can try is to follow the hot water with washing liquid and leave it for about half an hour. This approach is meant to help dissolve smaller paper blockages but we cannot guarantee it’s as effective as using a plunger.

  1. Shop for chemicals.

21st century has certain privileges (like the indoor toilet). Drainage products and enzyme removals are freely available at home stores. Only use chemical products as last resort, as they can be damaging to your pipes and drainage system. Before using any artificial products make sure to carefully read the instructions, as they can be harmful, if used incorrectly.

If you’ve tried all these methods, and your toilet is still blocked, we can help. Just click here to book one of our professional plumbers.

And if you don’t want to ever worry about different methods of unlocking your toilet, why not try our Plumbing & Drainage Care Club plans? With unlimited call-outs, parts and labour included, and no excess, the only thing you need to do is give us a call when there is a plumbing emergency.

How to unblock your toilet?

  1. Try the plunger

    The plunger should always be your first call, and it’s most likely to work. If you’re just reading this article out of curiosity, not need, put a plunger on your shopping list, it’s always good to have one.

    Run the plunger under hot water (be careful!) to soften it – this will allow for a better grip. The plunger needs to cover the toilet hole in full. Start pushing and pulling slowly, you should “feel the grip”. Increase the pushing and pulling, and proceed more vigorously, you should notice the water starting to drain out. Even if the water has drained out, the clog might still be there. Flush the toilet, and see if the water is draining with its normal speed. If not you’ll need to repeat the plunging action. You might need a few tries before the clog is completely cleared so don’t give up on the first try.


  2. Use a plumbing snake.

    Another useful home tool you might consider buying is a plumbing snake. You’ll need a special toilet one, as regular ones might be too thin, and damage your toilet instead of helping. What you want to do with the auger is push it into the waste pipe until you reach the clog. Then you start twisting it to break the clog into smaller parts and help it slide through the pipe. The auger has a hook at the end to retrieve flushed objects, such as your kids’ toys.

  3. Make use of the wire coat hanger.

    The principle here is the same as the plumbing snake, just low-budget. Unwind it so you are left with a long piece of wire and a hook at the end. Repeat the same actions as in method 2.

  4. Apply the hot water method.

    Sometimes simple decisions can help. Try pouring hot water (use with caution!) from above waist height. Use the plunger just after.

    Another method you can try is to follow the hot water with washing liquid and leave it for about half an hour. This approach is meant to help dissolve smaller paper blockages but we cannot guarantee it’s as effective as using a plunger.

  5. Shop for chemicals.

    21st century has certain privileges (like the indoor toilet). Drainage products and enzyme removals are freely available at home stores. Only use chemical products as last resort, as they can be damaging to your pipes and drainage system. Before using any artificial products make sure to carefully read the instructions, as they can be harmful, if used incorrectly.

  6. Book a Plumber

    If you’ve tried all these methods, and your toilet is still blocked, we can help. Just click here to book one of our professional plumbers.

    And if you don’t want to ever worry about different methods of unlocking your toilet, why not try our Plumbing & Drainage Care Club plans? With unlimited call-outs, parts and labour included, and no excess, the only thing you need to do is give us a call when there is a plumbing emergency.

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