Facing a toilet bowl choke is never a pleasant experience as it poses an immediate inconvenience with how often we use it on a daily basis. In the unpleasant event that you do face a toilet bowl choke, you can try various DIY ways to clear the plumbing choke yourself. If it’s too serious of a choke, then perhaps it’s best to find a plumbing service to help you with professional choke clearing equipment.
Methods to Unclog A Clogged Toilet?
- Using A Plunger
This is the first tool that comes to every homeowner’s mind. The first best thing to do is to turn off the water supply to the toilet. This will prevent water to overflow out of the toilet bowl. After turning off the supply, you can begin working with a plunger. The plunger will create some movement and air pressure to dislodge the object in the toilet bowl. Using a plunger requires some time and effort if the clog is stubborn, so it is important to work on it for at least 15 to 20 good plunges.
- Enzyme waste removal product
Similar to pouring a drain cleaner down a shower drain pipe when it drains too slowly, you can try pouring an enzyme waste material product to salvage the situation. Enzyme waste material products contains a mixture of enzyme that liquefy waste materials.
Purchase a suitable product and follow the instructions on the container. You will usually have to wait overnight for the enzymes to work on the clog, and the toilet should drain after the clog has been removed. Do note that this method will only work if the clog resulted from waste materials only.
You may also try homemade drain cleaner recipes you can find online. Most recipes should basically contain hot water, baking soda & vinegar. Make sure to prepare about 2 litres of the concoction in order for it to have enough pressure to push through to the clog. Let the concoction work its magic overnight, and it should clear the clog of any organic waste the next morning.
- Chemical Drain Cleaner
Chemical drain cleaners are considered a last resort. The chemical drain cleaner works in the same way as an enzyme waste material product but is much stronger. It is very toxic to people and pets, corrosive to pipes, and chlorinated drain cleaner can be very damaging to the environment. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and keep the lid down to prevent toxic fumes from filling the bathroom. Ensure that the room is well ventilated to prevent inhalation of the chemicals.
- Plumbing Snake
A plumbing snake is what a plumber uses to handle those tough and stubborn clogs, mostly for inorganic material. It is a flexible coil of wire that can find its way through the structure of the drainage pipe, thus the term plumbing snake. The goal of the plumbing snake is to probe the clog, causing it to collapse and breakdown into a smaller size so that the drainage can flow.
If you don’t have one available, you can straighten out a wire hanger as a substitute and try it out to see if you are successful. Otherwise, it might be better to hire a plumber to do it.
- Wet/Dry Vacuum Cleaner
Worse comes to worst, this professional plumber tool will have to come in as a last resort. As this machine can be quite powerful, it can only be done with drain pipes of a certain diameter. A wet/dry vacuum cleaner can cope with water unlike the conventional vacuum cleaner. The main objective of the vacuum cleaner is to suck out the clog in the toilet. But this can only be done after the water has been sucked out with the wet function of the vacuum. Then the dry function is used to try and suck the clog out.
Tips to Prevent A Toilet Bowl Choke
A toilet bowl choke can be easily prevented with regular cleaning and maintenance of your toilet bowl, not flushing any non-flushable items including hair, sanitary napkins, towel sheets, and food. This is just one of the common misconceptions of plumbing that people have, thinking that such innocuous items may not choke the toilet. Generally practicing these few ways to save money on plumbing, will help you prevent toilet bowl chokes as well.
- Differentiate between what is flushable and what is not
As a homeowner, you must know what can be flush down the toilet drain and what would likely cause a clogged toilet if flush down. Things such as facial wipes, napkins, paper towels, hair, food, and more are non-flushable materials.
These items do not disintegrate inside water, which will eventually clog up the drainage pipe, causing a choke. If it is hard to identify what is not flushable, just remember that you can only flush wastes, be it solid or liquid, and toilet paper only. Keep to this golden rule and your toilet bowl will be choke-free.
- Keep your toilet tank clear
Keeping your toilet tank clear of items is vital in preventing a toilet bowl clog. You will never know when the items on the toilet tank may or may not fall into the toilet bowl. But on the off chance that it does, it will increase the likelihood of a toilet bowl choke.
- Practice proper flushing
Proper flushing is to only flush an amount acceptable for the size of your toilet drainage pipe, per the volume of water used for each flush.
For example, when cleaning up after using the toilet, do not use an excessive amount of toilet paper as these can snowball into a large item with your waste, that is too big to pass through the size of your toilet trap or drainage pipe.
If you expect to be flushing down a large amount of waste, then flush regularly in intervals.
- Address weak flushes early
As previously addressed, a weak flush could cause the drainage pipe to clog, which will lead to a choke as the waste is not adequately flushed away.
- Educate your children
If you have a child at home, it would be best to educate him/her about the dos and don’ts when using the toilet. On top of potty training when young, as they grow older, it is good to educate them on what can or cannot be flushed down the toilet. This will not only prevent any possible toilet bowl chokes but also provide them with life skills which they can keep for life.
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This article is reproduced from Mr Plumber Singapore