5 effective methods to unclog your toilet

It’s a situation we’ve all faced at some point: the anxiety of flushing the toilet, hoping everything goes down smoothly. Modern toilets typically have a broad drainage system, around 100 mm in diameter, designed to handle a significant water flow. However, blockages can still occur, often due to excessive toilet paper, sanitary products, or other foreign objects. These obstructions prevent waste from flowing freely through the pipes. Before you consider diving in hands-first, here are five hands-off methods to tackle the problem. If all else fails, it might be time to call in a professional plumber.

Jas Min

The Trusty Plunger

The age-old plunger remains a reliable tool in the fight against clogs. This flexible half-sphere with a handle allows the stagnant water to move up and down, eventually dislodging the obstruction. Remember, if the pipe is blocked, avoid applying excessive force with the plunger. You might just push the blockage further down, making it harder to clear.

Vinegar and Baking Soda: A Dynamic Duo

Combining vinegar and baking soda can work wonders. When these two ingredients meet, they create a foamy chemical reaction. This reaction, while impressive to watch, is harmless and can effectively clear blockages. Pour a cup of vinegar followed by 200g of baking soda into your toilet bowl. Close the lid and let the mixture sit for about an hour. Finish by pouring a pot of boiling water to rinse the drain. As a bonus, this combination also neutralizes any lingering odors.

Dish Soap and Boiling Water

For minor blockages, where water drains out slowly, a mixture of dish soap and boiling water can be effective. Often, the force from the hot water is enough to clear the obstruction. The dish soap helps break down organic material. If this method doesn’t yield results, it’s best not to persist, as you might end up overfilling your toilet bowl.

Enzymatic Cleaners

Products designed for septic tanks, containing specific enzymes, can be a lifesaver. Unlike many commercial drain cleaners that contain harsh chemicals, these enzymes are non-corrosive. They work by breaking down organic waste, clearing the blockage. However, this method requires patience. Pour the product into the toilet bowl and let it work its magic overnight.

The Wire Coat Hanger Trick

As a last resort before calling a plumber, consider using a metal coat hanger. This mechanical method can be more effective than a plunger, especially if the blockage isn’t too deep. Straighten the hanger but keep one end curved. Insert the curved end into the toilet bowl and push it through the drain until you reach the obstruction. Rotate the hanger to break up the blockage. A pro tip: wrap the end of the hanger with tape to prevent scratching your toilet’s porcelain.

Final Thoughts

Dealing with a clogged toilet can be frustrating, but with the right techniques, you can address the issue without resorting to drastic measures. Always remember to use products and tools safely, and when in doubt, consult a professional. Happy flushing!