Home Care

No Stress: How to Unclog a Toilet and Prevent Future Blockage

With these quick fixes, you can skip calling the plumber for help

Photography: Shutterstock (Main Photo)

A clogged toilet normally isn’t an issue that’s hard to fix. Most of the time, all you need is a good plunger (the right kind). When it does happen, though, it can be a major problem that requires a lot of unwanted cleanups.

READ: Is Your Kitchen Sponge Dirtier Than Your Toilet?

Toilets can clog for several, different reasons. Unfortunately, other issues need more than just a plunger to fix them. Here, we enumerate the different reasons why a toilet may be clogged, how to prevent them from happening, and how to unclog a toilet when those problems arise.

READ: How Often Do You Clean Your Toilet Tank?

How to unclog a toilet efficiently and prevent future blockage:

white ceramic toilet bowl

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Check on the drainage

Before you run off to get a plunger, the first thing you should do when you notice a possible clog in your toilet is to check the drainage. To test this, you can open the tank of the toilet by lifting the lid and then pulling on the valve (connected to a chain).

If water flows strongly into the toilet bowl then it is working fine. If not, this could be the problem. To confirm this, you should try flushing the toilet manually using a bucket of water. Be sure that the bowl has enough space to take in the water before pouring it all in or else it can overflow.

If the toilet flushes using this method, then the problem may be in your tank. But if after you use the manual flushing method and it still doesn’t go down then you can go grab your plunger.

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READ: 10 Must-See Celebrity Bathrooms

Use a plunger

unclogging a toilet with plunger

Unclogging a toilet using a plunger is simple. First, make sure you have the right kind of plunger—the one with the flange on the bottom. All you do is align the flange with the drain and press down. You may need to do this a few times before it unclogs. You’ll know it worked when all the water drains down the hole.

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If you don’t have a plunger lying around and are in a pinch, all you need is a lot of cling wrap. How to unclog a toilet using this method would require you to wrap the toilet bowl 3 to 4 times to seal the bowl tightly. Once it’s sealed well, flush the toilet. The pressure should force the cling crap into a dome shape. Once this happens, push down on the cling wrap until the toilet drains.

READ: A Step-by-Step Guide to Unclogging a Toilet Without a Plunger

Utilize a toilet declogger

to prevent clogs, throw sanitary products in the trash

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Toilet paper, flushable wipes, and other sanitary products of the same variety shouldn’t be flushed down the toilet despite how they’re marketed. They’re the main perpetrator of causing a blockage in toilets. Although paper sanitary products, when saturated with water, break down after flushing, they may not fully break down enough to go through the drainage system in your home.

Even just one piece of toilet paper can get stuck in the drain and create a domino effect of further blockage later on. To prevent them from creating clogs, then it would be best to throw them in the trash.

If a plunger isn’t working, how to unclog a toilet with this issue is to use a chemical de-clogger. Simply pour it down the drain, let it sit for the amount of time indicated in the packaging, then flush.

READ: 10 Essential Organizing and Storage Tricks for Small Bathrooms

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insufficient water flow can prevent your toilet from flushing

Get a snake, a drain snake that is

If the aforementioned methods aren’t working, then your blockage may be more solid. In these cases, you can try using a drain snake. A drain snake is a metal tool that you weave down the drain to pick up built-up material that’s blocking it. This will take some time and effort but if you’re able to pull up the blockage then it’s worth it.

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If any of these methods aren't working, you might have a more serious toilet issue that may need professional expertise. Call a trusted plumber as soon as possible to identify and address the problem.

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