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- By James Wisler
- Residential Plumbing
A plunger is probably the cleanest, most sanitary way to unstop a toilet. However, if the toilet isn’t installed properly, its seal can be compromised by using a plunger. A big red flag is if a toilet keeps getting stopped up weekly or even daily. Frequent clogs are indicative of an issue that needs to be addressed. If the toilet only gets clogged every six months or longer, then it’s probably fine.
Toilet snakes are cable tools used to clear stoppages, but they have to be used with extreme care. Otherwise it’s very easy to scratch the porcelain on the bowl of the toilet. (Professionals generally use toilet snakes instead of plungers.) It’s also possible to actually uninstall the toilet, take it off the floor, bring it outside, and then turn it upside down in a safe area to clear it out.
Most people probably get squeamish about this next part, but if you can see an object in the bowl that shouldn’t be flushed, you can probably remove it before it ends up going down the trap of the toilet. If a toy or foreign object does fall into the toilet bowl, I would highly recommend putting on some rubber gloves, reaching into the toilet, and just getting it out before the problem becomes much worse. Do not flush the toilet to see if it’ll go down, because more than likely it won’t. It’s going to end up getting stuck and you’ll have a much bigger problem to handle.
You can definitely cause damage if you’re not experienced dealing with a toilet. A plunger is the safest, easiest, and most economical thing you can do. If you’ve tried a plunger on a stopped up toilet and it’s just not working, or if you’re using the plunger on a daily or weekly basis, it’s a really good idea to contact a professional. You can always reach out to the team at Wisler Plumbing & Air by or giving us a call at 540-483-9382.