It happens from time to time that you flush once, then another and… No! Trying it a third time could flood the toilet. It is clear that the toilet is blocked. Now what to do? The toilet panic immediately sets in: ‘What should I do now? Do I have to call a plumber? That will cost me a fortune!”
But no! We are here to help: the problem of the blocked toilet can be solved more easily than expected, without even spending too much money. First, remember to cover the area around the toilet with newspaper or paper towels to protect the floor from splashes and leaks. Then, equip yourself with a little patience, elbow grease and one of these methods:
Yes, as it turned out, the plunger is a must-have gadget in the home and really can be very useful. Before trying with this tool, however, try to remove what is blocking the drain with your hands (strictly by putting on gloves!): at the thought it may seem terribly disgusting, but sometimes all you need to do is move the blockage a little to let the water through.
If it doesn’t work and you have to use the plunger, surely having a quality one will make the operation easier. Run the plunger under hot water for a while before using it: this will allow the rubber to expand and fit better around the edges of the toilet and then apply pressure. Once in place, press and pull several times to loosen the plug.
The do-it-yourself remedy
Among its other endless uses (such as cleaning the fridge or the oven), baking soda can also come in handy for unclogging the toilet. This remedy is very effective, but it may take a few hours for the solution to work, so it would be best to do it at night before going to bed, to make sure that no one in the house uses the toilet for a while.
How does it work? Pour a solution of bicarbonate and two glasses of white vinegar down the toilet drain and then pour hot water over it to create pressure. The chemical reaction and the mixture will do its job and dissolve the plug of dirt clogging the drain.
If you don’t already have one, you can make a perfect hook by using a metal dry cleaner’s hanger – it’s easy to find and shape!
To avoid scratching the walls of the toilet, we recommend covering the surface with a cloth. Use the long hook to move the blockage: just slide it slowly into the drain and apply light pressure to remove all the dirt. Once the plug is removed, operate the flush to flush completely.
The vacuum cleaner
If you have one of those hoovers (even liquid ones) the operation will certainly be easier. Remove the tip of the hose and suck up all the water in the toilet. Once the water has been removed, wrap a cloth around the end of the hose so that less air can pass through. This way the suction will be more powerful and you will be able to remove the plug.
The hydraulic snake
This is certainly the most conventional technique and is also the one used by plumbers. So, it might make sense to invest in one of these things if you don’t already own one! Insert the end of the ‘snake’ into the drain and at some point, bump the plug. At this point, make small rotations with the tip of the contraption, trying to break the accumulation of dirt clogging the drain into smaller fragments. Gradually, the water will have enough space to slide out, finally clearing the blockage.