Advanced Drains and Underground Solutions Blog

How To Handle an Overflowing Toilet

An overflowing toilet is not just unsanitary and unpleasant. It can indicate more serious plumbing problems lurking below the surface.

Toilet overflows need to be dealt with promptly to prevent more significant issues like water damage to your flooring. If left unchecked, overflows can even cause structural damage.

Want to know the best ways to handle an overflowing toilet? Keep reading!

What Causes Toilet Clogs?

Toilet clogs may seem like a straightforward issue. However, there is a surprisingly long list of reasons why your toilet can become blocked to the point of overflowing. Here are some of the most common causes of toilet clogs:

  • Low-Flow Toilet: While newer models should have enough flushing power to handle flushing with ease, older pre-2000 models may experience issues with low water pressure.
  • Clogged Drain Line: Over time, drain lines can become clogged simply due to age. Or, they may be blocked by foreign objects like hair or other debris.
  • Not Enough Water In the Tank: If your tank is not filling correctly, it won’t have the power to flush everything down. This will eventually lead to clogs and overflows.
  • Hard Water Calcification: If you live in an area with hard water, the build-up of minerals can cause blockages in your pipes over time. This may restrict the water flow to the point of overflow.
  • Clogged S-Trap: This bend in the pipe prevents sewer gases from escaping into your house. If this is clogged, action from a plunger is usually enough to solve the issue.

5 Simple Steps to Handle an Overflowing Toilet

It’s always recommended that you contact a plumber if you have an overflowing toilet. However, the steps below can help in an emergency.

  1. Turn off the toilet’s water supply.
  2. Remove the tank cover and lift the float ball so water won’t fill the tank.
  3. Remove enough excess water from the toilet bowl so you can use your plunger without a mess.
  4. Use a plunger with slow but firm pressure. Increase pressure if needed. If you can’t dislodge the blockage with a plunger, you can try a drain snake for more challenging situations.
  5. If you have removed the blockage, reset the float mechanism and conduct a flush test.

Contact a plumber immediately if your toilet is still overflowing after following these steps.

How to Prevent Toilet Overflows in the Future

Here are some basic tips on ways to prevent your toilet from overflowing:

Be Careful What You Flush: The toilet is not a trash can. Restrict flushed items to toilet tissue paper only.

Install a Water Softener: If you live in a place with hard water, water softeners treat your water before it goes into the toilet and prevents minerals build-up in your pipes.

Schedule Drain Cleaning Services: You can use this to clear a stubborn clog or a preventative measure. After your drains are unclogged, consider setting up an annual or bi-annual maintenance appointment. Clean pipes will save you money and headaches in the future.

It’s not always easy to determine the source of a toilet clog or to clear it effectively. This is why having a plumber to turn to is extremely helpful!

If you need emergency plumbing in Springfield, PA, give Advanced Drains and Underground Solutions a call! Honesty over Monetary.

Advanced Drains and Underground Solutions Blog