How to Unclog a Toilet Using a Plunger or Auger


Plunge Clogged Toilet

Once in a while when we flush toilets, instead of the water going out of the toilet bowl down into the drain, the water will come back up together with what you just deposited into the toilet. To help you learn how to unclog a clogged toilet there are a few simple things to keep in mind while unclogging the toilet.

Stop your toilet bowl from filling up.

If the clogged toilet looks like it is going to overflow onto the toilet floor, then you should take the cistern lid off the tank and quickly close the toilets flapper flush ball. The flapper is the moving part of the flush valve that seals the water into the tank or allows water to exit the tank for the flush cycle. A broken flush valve is one the most common replacement parts for toilets. 

Using a plunger to unclog the toilet.

If you have successfully managed to avoid the clogged toilet from overflowing, then it's time to get out the plunger. The best way to use a plunger effectively, you are going to need a good seal between the plunger and the clogged toilet bowl. A regular plunger will work, but a funnel-cup plunger is the best plunger for these kinds of plumbing jobs.

Warm up your plunger.

Using a stiff and hard plunger often  doesn’t work as well as soft plungers. To get the rubber more flexible, run your plunger under the hot water tap for a while before you use it. 

How to plunge the toilet correctly.

Use the plunger correctly by putting it into the clogged toilet bowl so that it forms a tight seal, covering the toilets exit hole. Most people focus only on the pushing of the plunger, but pulling the plunger back is almost as important. Plunge the toilet correctly by giving a few good up / down thrusts. Then try to flush the toilet to see if it is still clogged. If the toilet starts to overflow, quickly close the float valve to stop water from entering the bowl, and repeat the plunging until your clog is gone. 

Add Hot Water and dishwasher detergent.

Adding a few cups of hot or boiling water to the clogged toilet bowl before you start plunging can drastically improve the effects of using a plunger. The hot water will help break down whatever is left inside the toilet, and it might even break the clog without even using the plunger. When you pour the hot water into the toilet, you need to let it sit there for a few minutes for the heat to take effect. Also, try adding some dishwasher detergent. The soap from the detergent can break some of the clogs up, as well. 

For harder clogs, use an auger.

If using a plunger is not working, it’s time to get an auger. A plumbing auger is a cable that you can use to 'snake' through the toilet and drain to help loosen up any clogging inside your toilet or pipes. You can find augers at various lengths and sizes down at your local hardware store. Using an auger is quite simple, you need to put the cable down the hole and start turning the crank. While you are turning the cable will rotate inside your plumbing and you should move it further along the hole until it stops. When it stops you have reached your blockage. Continue cranking it and the auger will either break up the clog or hook on to it. When you think you have got the clog hooked, gently pull it back out from the toilet. After that, give the toilet a couple more good plunges to clear up any left over clogging then flush the toilet and it should be cleared.

When to call the plumber.

There are times when your own efforts aren’t paying of. If you see the water backing up in the sinks or showers whenever you flush, it’s time to call in a local plumber. Water going back to strange locations when you flush means you have a clogged main line. Then the plunger and auger just won’t get the job done.

Avoiding clogged toilets.

Teach children that the toilet is not a carwash or water ride for their barbie dolls and toy cars. The majority of clogged toilets involves toys and other solid objects that kids have put into the toilet.

Also ensure the jetflow around the toilet bowl’s edge is clean. clogged up jets will stop the toilet from flushing at full power therefor preventing you from clearing out the toilet and its contents. Regular toilet cleaning with a brush will prevent the build-up. And finally, also try to use a little less toilet paper to avoid clogging.

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