Almost everyone has to deal with a clogged toilet at some point. It can be a foul, messy ordeal if you don’t know what you’re doing. The good news is that many times the problem can be fixed with a simple toilet plunger and a little know-how. On the other hand, a clogged toilet can also be a sign of a bigger problem that requires professional attention.
If you ever find the toilet overflowing or about to overflow, the first thing to do is to shut off the toilet’s water supply by turning the supply valve counter-clockwise. This is usually an oblong metal handle attached to the tube that goes from the wall into the toilet tank. Once that is done, try using a plunger to fix the clog. If the water is right up to the rim of the bowl, you may have to dip some of it out into a bucket to make room for the plunger. Make sure you use a flange plunger specifically designed for a toilet and not a regular cup plunger, which is designed for a tub or sink drain.
Place the plunger directly over the drain hole and begin pumping. Be sure to use a vertical motion when you plunge so you don’t break the seal between the plunger and the drain hole. Most of the time this will be enough to remove the clog. You’ll know when it happens because after you remove the plunger the water will begin to drain on its own. However, if you find that after a few minutes of plunging, the water level is still not budging, you may have a more serious issue.
One of the most important things to understand is that you should NEVER put a commercial drain cleaner (like Drano or Liquid Plumr) in your toilet. The chemicals in these products react with organic matter and create heat, which can damage metal and PVC pipes or even cause your porcelain toilet bowl to crack. The best thing to do in this situation is to call in a professional to assess the problem. You may have a clog in your main sewer line or in one of the secondary sewer lines. If this is the case, the problem needs immediate attention. If left alone it will only get worse and can even cause extensive damages and a hefty repair bill.
There are a few other signs to look out for that may indicate you have a sewer line blockage. For instance, if more than one drain is clogged or sluggish, there is a good chance that the problem is in the sewer line. Other signs of a sewer line clog are air bubbles in the toilet water or a foul odor escaping from either the toilet or a sink/tub drain.
Don’t wait and let the problem get worse. A professional drain cleaner can quickly diagnose the issue and help you get everything in working order again. Shoreline Sewer & Drain, LLC can help you with both emergency drain services and regular drain maintenance services! We offer drain cleaning services in Port Charlotte, North Port, Sarasota, Englewood, Venice, Punta Gorda, Cape Coral, Fort Myers and Arcadia, Florida. Give us a call now for your free drain cleaning estimate!