How To Unclog A Toilet That Has A Blockage

Hung Up by jurvetson, on FlickrOne of the most common plumbing problems in any household is a a blocked toilet. This is usually a relatively easy problem to fix by clearing the blockage. There are several approaches to do that, each involving different tools.

The easiest way is to clear the blockage with a plunger, otherwise known as the plumber’s friend. The toilet should have enough water in the bowl to allow the whole rubber suction cup of the plunger to be submerged.

By plunging the handle of the plunger up and down, the air pressure created beneath the suction cup is supposed to dislodge the clog. If the toilet bowl does not have enough water, the toilet should not be flushed. Flushing a toilet while it is clogged will result in the bowl overflowing with water. Instead, a pot of water should be obtained from another bathroom or the kitchen to fill the toilet bowl with enough water to cover the suction cup. If the use of a plunger does not dislodge the clog, the blockage must be removed manually by using a drain snake.

The drain snake is a long wire coil with a tip that looks like a corkscrew. The snake is fed into the toilet until it reaches the clog. When the snake is turned clockwise, the tip screws into the blockage and breaks it apart so the pieces will move through the drain. Another possibility is that the debris can get caught by the wire so it can be pulled out by the snake. Besides the drain snake, a toilet auger can also be used.

The auger is designed to maneuver around the first bend of the toilet. This has a long tube that guides the snake and hook into the trap and hook on to the obstruction so that it can be pulled out.


If using an auger or a snake still does not clear the obstruction from the clogged toilet, then the toilet may need to be pulled up. This is a complicated approach because it will require several hours of work. The water supply needs to be turned off and disconnected from the tank. The toilet needs to be taken apart partially and unscrewed from the mounting ring.

If the obstruction was caused by something that had fallen through the toilet bowl and had gotten stuck at the top part of the drain, it can probably be retrieved at this point. After the obstruction is removed, the toilet can be put back in place. New mounting bolts and a new wax ring will be needed to seal the toilet back onto the mounting ring.

If that method also fails to clear a blocked toilet, avoid using chemicals because if they do not work, a toilet bowl full of caustic chemicals will remain. The smartest thing to do would be to contact a professional plumber to fix the problem. Although that may be costly, the plumber would be able to identify the cause of the problem quickly and get it fixed efficiently.

Hopefully these tips will give you the help you need the next time that you have a clogged toilet. If applied correctly, you will have the blockage unclogged in no time.