Using a Toilet Snake for Stubborn Clog Guide

use a toilet snack

There’s no feeling quite like watching the water-level rise ominously in the toilet bowl. Often unhygienic, messy, and even embarrassing, a blocked drain is a problem you want to solve ASAP.

And since you’re reading this article, we can guess that’s exactly why you’re here. Not to worry! Sometimes a stubborn clog just seems immovable no matter the amount of plunging and chemical pouring. This is when we recommend a more involved approach. And the best part?

You can do it completely on your own, no plumber necessary. You just need a little help from the toilet snake.

A Toilet Snake Explained

Not all pipes are the same, and toilet snakes are specifically designed to be used in toilet systems by either grabbing or breaking through the congested material to help loosen the blockage.

If you’re looking to purchase a toilet snake, one feature to look out for is the coating on the metal shaft of the tool. Unlike other drain snakes, toilet snakes have a distinctive protective rubber coating over the shaft to prevent scratching the toilet bowl. Toilet snakes also go by ‘toilet augers’ and ‘closet snakes’ but so long as you look for a well-made snake with a sturdy rubber coating then these aliases won’t confuse you!

Toilet snakes are a common tool readily available in most hardware stores and online. They’re generally quite affordable, so it’s easy to have a basic toilet snake on hand in case of emergency. However, if you do want to invest in a drain auger or another more powerful tool, be prepared to spend more.

Functions of a Toilet Snake

orange handle using a toilet snake in toilet

Your toilet’s drain, just like any other drain, is prone to clogging. Have a look under your sink; you’ll likely see the pipe that carries away waste, particularly noting the pipe’s bent shape. This crucial bend is referred to as the p-trap, and this shape is also integrated into the porcelain making up your toilet.

When your toilet works as expected, the force of the flush pushes all waste smoothly through this pipe. Everything you flush must go through this pipe, which is why larger objects can get stuck and prevent your toilet from draining properly.

The most common causes of toilet clogs include excessive toilet paper, waste, or any other object that’s unable to break down or too large to flow through the pipes.

If you are attempting to unclog your toilet, keep in mind that you’re basically trying to move the blockage material through the p-trap bend.  When blocked, you’ll need to manually jostle the waste and clear the blockage, which is where the toilet snake comes in handy.

Types of Toilet Snake

5 different types of toilet snakes shown in photo

Snakes vs. Augers

Augers and snakes? Snakes and augers are often confused for one another or lumped together as the same tool. True, they are two very similar drain-clearing tools, but they have important differences. There are various types and sizes of augers for different drain needs but all augers act in the same way – boring through a blockage, loosening and dispersing the waste, while snakes grab and pull the blockage out.

All of these options mean the toilet snake is not the only tool out there to unclog your toilet. However, the toilet snake is probably your best bet. Let’s take a look at exactly what these augers do to understand why we recommend the toilet snake:

Cable Auger

Also known as drain augers, cable augers are a good general auger to have in your home. You can use a cable auger on a sink or toilet; however, you risk scratching your toilet bowl on the uncovered metal rod. Cable augers have a corkscrew-shaped hook at the end of the cable which can be firmly twisted into the blockage and then used to haul it out.

Flat Tape Auger

Flat tape augers are similar to cable augers in how they work but the design is very different. Flat tape augers have a sharp tip and a more rigid flat cable instead of a hook and hose shape. The difference in design is because flat tape augers are very small and are only made for pipes with maximum diameter of 2 inches – a lot smaller than your toilet. In these small pipes, pushing is preferable to pulling, and the spear loosens and pushes the clog along the pipe to clear it.

Power Auger

Power augers are the alternative to manual augers like the cable auger. The power auger typically has a built-in motor or another power source which means you just have to feed the cable into the drain and let the auger do the rest. This is faster than a manual, but power augers are more expensive and more difficult for beginners to use.

Rocket Nozzle Auger

Rocket nozzle augers. The name alone gives it away, but these augers are pretty serious pieces of equipment. Not recommended for non-professionals, rocket nozzle augers are only used in commercial application and by licensed plumbers. Not to mention they’re much pricier than our other examples… We’re thinking that’s a little excessive just for a toilet.

Toilet Auger and Snake

Here it is. This is what you’ve been waiting for: the toilet snake.

We know now that all pipes aren’t the same. Cable augers scratch the porcelain, flat tape augers are too small, power augers are pricy, and rocket nozzle augers might destroy your toilet entirely. Toilet snakes are the perfect solution.

Toilet snakes are shorter than other augers to perfectly fit your pipes and come with a protective rubber coating over the metal rod to protect your bowl. The toilet snake either grabs or breaks through the pipe congestion, loosening it all. When a pipe is congested you can either break the blockage, push it through, or pull it back. Pushing a blockage is risky if you don’t know your pipe system or are inexperienced. Pulling the clog out is a guaranteed success – the obstruction travelled along the pipe to get there so you know it can fit back up. Designed to pull out, the toilet snake ensures that the obstruction is removed which makes them very beginner friendly.

How to Snake a Toilet (DIY Steps)

Snaking a toilet may sound intimidating but the process is actually quite simple. The only things you’ll need are a pair of rubber gloves and the toilet snake itself. But we don’t exactly recommend wearing your nicest outfit either.

Here are the five simple steps that you should follow (and a helpful YouTube video for a more visual explanation):

Step One: Insert the Toilet Snake

Take the toilet snake and insert the metal cable into the toilet bowl. Make sure that the snake goes all the way down into the drain.

Step Two: Turn the Toilet Snake

Crank the handle in a clockwise motion to push the cable deeper into the drain. Following the curve of the drain, keep cranking until the whole cable has made it through. If you feel the resistance of the clog, let the crank reset before continuing to turn. Repeat this as many times as necessary.

Step Three: Slowly Remove the Toilet Snake

Turn the handle counterclockwise to gradually retract the cable. Don’t go too fast: the goal of this step is to either pull out or break up the clog with the snake’s motion, not to soak everything within splash-range!

Step Four: Test the Toilet with a Flush

When the cable has retracted fully you should have successfully removed the clog. You’ll notice the water level going back to normal in the bowl. To really confirm it, take a test flush. If your toilet flushes without a problem and drains like normal then it’s official!

Step Five: Clean-Up

After you’ve confirmed that the toilet is back to normal, clean your toilet snake and safely store it away. We recommend cleaning your toilet snake with a hard-wire brush and warm, flowing water.

And in five easy steps, you’ve successfully resolved your blocked drain issues all on your own! Who needs a plumber with you around?

Preventative Measures Against Clogging

Now that you have solved the problem, you don’t want to have it again. There are a few ways you can stop another clog from happening in the future:

many toilet photos of clog repairing a toilet

The Flush

Only flush things that are meant to be flushed. For instance, we all know that toilet paper is specifically made to break down when you flush it down the toilet. But other bathroom items like cleaning wipes, sanitary products, and paper towels break down very slowly or not at all. These ‘unflushables’ should be thrown in a waste bin instead.

Take Cover

Another way to prevent clogs is the positioning of the toilet seat and cover. Any foreign object that falls into the toilet can easily lead to blockages. To avoid this, always keep your toilet seat and cover down to cover the drain. This not only stops things from falling into the toilet but is also more hygienic.

Drain Cleaners

Another clog-causing culprit is chemical drain cleaners. Over time certain chemical cleaners can build up in your drain and damage the bowl and pipes. Try avoiding these harmful products and instead look for cleaners marked as fully safe for your toilet and drain instead. Many of these options are not only safer for your toilet but also your home, your children, and the environment.

Eyes Open

Identifying and resolving any toilet issues early on can save you a world of trouble. If you notice that your toilet has trouble flushing or the water level is lower than normal, something could be wrong. If you can identify the problem early on you may not even need to use your snake! A plunger or a safe chemical solution could be enough to nip the problem in the bud.


Finally, the most important way to keep your toilet clog-free is through regular maintenance and TLC. Keeping both your toilet and the pipes clean minimizes the risk of material build up over time. We recommend that you clean your entire system at least once or twice a month for the best results.

Buying a Toilet Snake

Toilet snakes are a very common tool and you can find them in most hardware shops or online. They’re also pretty affordable so it’s easy to have a basic toilet snake around for when you need it. Remember the snake/auger confusion? Well toilet snakes also go by ‘toilet augers’ or ‘closet snakes’ which can get confusing. The most important thing to look out for when buying though is a sturdy rubber coating because an exposed metal shaft can damage your toilet. So no matter the alias, you know enough about drain snakes now to make a good choice for your toilet.

Final Thoughts

So successfully snaking a toilet isn’t as tough as it sounds. After your first time you’ll easily snake any future stubborn clogs and avoid calling a plumber for an issue you can resolve all on your own. Remember our preventative measures and you’ll be unstoppable!

Toilet Backup into Shower Guide (Solutions of 2023)

fixtures and clogged drains in your home

Ladies and gentlemen, hold on to your loofahs and plungers, because we’re about to dive into the murky world of bathroom plumbing. Let’s talk about the two most important fixtures in your bathroom: the throne and the shower.

It’s a well-known fact that a shower and a toilet should always keep their distance. I mean, they’re like the Ross and Rachel of bathroom appliances – better off apart. Because if something goes wrong with the connection between them, you’re going to have a stinky situation on your hands.

Normally, when you flush the toilet, the waste gets transported from your porcelain palace to the sewer main, and that’s the end of it. But if something goes awry with the main line, things can get real messy. Imagine stepping into your shower, ready to lather up and get squeaky clean, only to find out that the water coming out of the showerhead is…brown. Yikes! That’s enough to make you want to move to a different zip code.

Causes of Toilet Backup

If you’re experiencing a backup in your shower or toilet, the main sewer line is likely to blame. Clogs, no matter how small, can cause backups in all the connected sewer lines. So what’s causing the clog?

Here are five common culprits:

Tree Roots

Trees need water, and during dry spells, their roots can reach out and invade your sewer line. Even a tree in your neighbor’s yard could be responsible for the clog if there’s a weakness or leak in your pipes. Over time, the roots can break through the pipes and create a blockage.


We all lose hair in the shower, but did you know that it can cause clogs? After enough hair builds up, it creates a net that catches other debris and slows down the drainage.

Flushed Objects

People flush all kinds of things down the toilet, but only water, biodegradable toilet paper, and waste should go down there. Flushed objects like paper towels, toys, and feminine hygiene products can easily create a blockage. And those so-called “flushable” wipes? Not so flushable after all.

Pipe Scale

Water naturally contains minerals like magnesium and calcium, which can build up over time and create a blockage in your pipes. This scale can form on any surface that meets water, so don’t be surprised if your pipes are affected.


Oils, fats, and grease are nasty when they enter your drainage system. They often come from dirty dishes and can build up in your pipes over time, leading to backups in all your drains.

How to Fix the Backup

Now that you know what’s causing the backup, it’s time to take action. We don’t recommend harsh chemicals, as they rarely solve the issue.

Instead, try some of these methods:

  • Head Above Water

If the clog is causing flooding, you’ll want to shut off the main water supply. The shutoff is likely located in your garage, basement, or near the water heater.

  • Snake It Up

A drain snake is a handy tool for breaking down stubborn clogs. To use it, carefully lower it into the toilet and start spinning it clockwise until you reach the clog. Then, spin the snake counterclockwise and pull it out. You can also use the snake on your shower drain after removing the cover.

  • Clear The Air

If the vent pipe is blocked, your toilet and shower can back up. Check for obstructions with a flashlight and remove any clogs you find. If the blockage is too far down the pipe, use a garden hose or drain snake to clear it out.

Bottom Line

When your toilet is backing up into the shower, it’s time to take action. Use our expert tips to figure out what’s causing the backup and how to fix it. If you’re not comfortable tackling the problem yourself, call a professional plumber. But remember, we’re here to help, and with a little bit of humor and a lot of expertise, we’ll get you back to flushing and showering in no time!





A shower and a toilet are the two things that should always be kept separately. If anything happens to that connection, you could start having problems with both systems.

Normally, when you flush the toilet, it transports the waste from your house to the sewer main. But, if there is something wrong with the main line, the water could come up through the drain in the shower.

Let’s dive into the reasons and solutions below.


Toilet Backup Causes (Main Line)

If the main sewer line gets clogged, it could start backing up in all the smaller lines. Even the partial clogs can cause noticeable backups in all the sewer lines connected to your shower or your toilet. There are numerous things that could cause the clog.

Here are five causes why your toilet is backing up into your shower.


1. Tree Roots

As we all know trees need water, and during dry periods tree roots will try to reach your sewer line. Even a tree at your neighbor’s house could reach your sewer line during the dry periods, especially if there is any type of leak or weakness in your pipes. After some time, the roots can break through the pipes, get into the sewer line and clog it up.

2. Hair

Our hair falls out while we are bathing. Although it happens quite slowly and we may not even notice it, after some time it could become an issue. The hair will start forming a net which will most likely catch other things that would, under normal conditions, drain properly. This can eventually slow down or even stop the drainage.

3. Flushed Objects

Many foreign objects are often the cause for clogs. Some of them are paper towels, children’s toys, thick toilet paper, feminine hygiene products, etc. That is why water, biodegradable toilet paper, and waste are the only things that should be flushed down the toilet. Even the flushable wipes can sometimes clog up the toilet.

4. Pipe Scale

This mineral layer consists of magnesium and calcium. It naturally occurs in water and can form on literally any surface that meets water. This layer can eventually build up, as these elements are left behind in your pipes. If this happens it could be the cause of the blockage.

5. Grease

When allowed into the drainage systems, oils, fats, and grease can be pretty nasty. These substances are mostly washed off dirty dishes. If your systems are connected, they will travel into the same sewer line as your toilet and shower. If they eventually build up you could start seeing repercussions in all your drains.

Fix the Backup (Take Action)

Now that you have figured out the cause, it is time to fix it.


Now, the first thing that many people do when they find themselves in this situation is buy some harsh chemicals to break the clog. There are numerous chemical products promising to break down and clear up any type of clog.

However, there are no chemicals that can solve this type of issue. Instead of wasting time and money on useless products, try some of the methods listed below.

#1. Head Above Water

Before you start thinking about the ideal solution to your problem, you might want to shut off the main water supply. The main reason is that if the clog is large enough it could cause flooding. The shutoff is most likely in your garage, basement, or somewhere near the water heater.

#2. Snake It Up

A drain snake is a tool known for being quite effective when it comes to breaking down stubborn clogs. Therefore, if you have a drain snake, carefully lower it in the toilet as it could scratch the porcelain. Once it is inside the toilet start spinning it clockwise until you reach the clog. After you have reached the clog start spinning the snake counterclockwise and pull it out. You can try the same with the shower drain but, in order to do that, you must remove the drain cover first.

#3. Clear The Air

Another reason could be related to a blocked vent pipe. The vent pipe will run from the back of your toilet to the roof. Grab a flashlight and check if there are any obstructions in the pipe. If you se something, then remove the clog. If the blockage is far down the pipe, then use a garden hose to spray water down it. A drain snake can also come in handy too.

Bottom Line

If your toilet backs up into the shower there is some type of clog that is preventing both systems from working properly. As you can see numerous things can clog up the pipes. In order to solve this issue, figuring out what caused the clog is essential. After that, use some of the methods listed above to get rid of it. Still, if you don’t feel comfortable fixing this problem on your own, you should hire a professional plumber.

Never Flush These Things Down a Toilet

what not to flush down a toilet

People are always in doubt about what they can and can’t flush down a toilet, and it’s for a good reason – some things can clog a toilet pretty quickly.

If you were also wondering what you can throw down the drain, don’t worry.

Today, we will talk about what exactly you may or may not flush down the toilet.

Why a Toilet Clogs

First, we need to clarify why toilets get clogged. Five basic reasons include a blocked trapway, a blocked plumbing vent, main sewer line problems, having a low-quality or old toilet, and obviously, flushing non-flushable items in the toilet.

A toilet is designed to dispose only of certain items, usually those that quickly dissolve into water. The fact is, no matter how wide the pipe, it can easily get blocked with non-disposable materials. In turn, the water won’t be able to flow properly, which will cause additional problems.

Unsafe Items to Flush

Most likely there are some materials that you flush every now and then, unaware that they are non-dissolvable. Below we’ll discuss what is the truth and what is a myth.

#1. Flush Cat Litter

Most cat owners believe that cat litter is more eco-friendly than the already-existing alternative. However, that’s not the truth. Modern cat litters are less smelly and more convenient, but still, they can cause problems in your plumbing. Besides, they can even send harmful parasites into water treatment plans that aren’t able to filter them properly.

Flushable Cat Litter?

Some cat litter is made of corn, wood, or pine, which makes it seem eco-friendly. These materials also prevent bed smells, which is another plus. However, they aren’t always designed to be flushed down the toilet. Note that some systems won’t be able to dissolve cat fecal matter, even if they are labeled as “being compatible with flushable litter.”

Also, cat fecal matter quickly dehydrates, and by the time you flush it, it’s already solid and blocks pipes much easier.

#2. Flush Hair

We all lose a bit of hair on a regular basis and it’s considered completely normal. If you own a dog, you are probably already used to seeing lots of hair in the house, and you might have considered flushing stray hairs down the toilet. Much worse things don’t clog the toilet, so hair seems completely harmless.

However, although it might seem harmless, it’s not a good idea to flush hair down the toilet. Hair is one of the most common things that cause clogs in the plumbing system. Hair easily snags on anything, which is pretty bad for older plumbing systems or pipes that have been repaired and have rough areas. Plus, if the hair is long, it can easily ball up and pick up everything in its way. Additionally, no matter if it’s human or pet hair, it breaks down very slowly.

#3. Flush Wipes

Even if the wipes are labeled as “flushable,” you should never throw them in a toilet. Most wipes are made of cotton, but some of them may contain plastic resins that prevent them from decomposing. Around half of the sewer systems in the United Kingdom are abused by wipes, and the number is increasing.

Plus, wipes don’t just cause issues with your toilet. When your plumbing system gets clogged, the content from the sewer will come back up through the pipes, or even up your sink, and create a huge financial loss. We strongly advise you to throw baby wipes in the trash bin after use.

Are Pampers Wipes Flushable?

Pampers wipes usually come with a “flushable” label, but we still advise you to throw them in the trash. Despite the label, they might take up to 500 years to decompose due to the materials they are made of.

#4. Flushing Pills

If you want to throw some old pills in the toilet, you might want to think again. Unless the pills don a “flushable” or another similar label, you shouldn’t flush them down the toilet. They won’t cause any clogs, but they will definitely affect fishes’ biological behavior in rivers. Some people even chop the pills and mix them with cat litter, which is also not a good idea. Many pharmacies have a medication take-back program where you can take your old pills.

You can also mix the medication with dirt or litter and throw it away in the garbage. The goal is to make it as unusable as possible to prevent others from getting to it and using it in unapproved ways. Also, you might want to scratch your identifying information from the bottle.

#5. Flushing Paper Towels

Most people don’t know that they shouldn’t flush paper towels in the toilet. Although they might look like toilet paper, they are made from slightly different materials. The fiber they are made from takes much longer to dissolve than toilet paper. After some time, they might cause clogs and blockages in your toilet. The best way to get rid of used paper towels is to simply throw them in the trash bin.

How to Unclog Paper Towels from the Toilet

In case your toilet gets clogged by paper towels, you should start with the easiest methods first to unclog. Before you start, however, try to pull out as much waste as you can. Then, use a toilet auger to break up the material that is close to the bowl. If you don’t have one, you can purchase one in most hardware stores for under $50.

First, insert the plastic sleeve in the drain, then extend the cable, but always keep the sleeve firmly on the opening so that you don’t damage the surface. Then, press it down and rotate the handle, but don’t use too much force since it might knot the cable. Note that it can take several attempts until you unclog the toilet.

But what if you can’t unclog it with an auger? Then you should find another drain opening, such as a sink or an opening in the wall. When you find it, try to unclog the toilet using a handheld drum auger, which you can buy for less than $30.

#6. Flushing Tissues

Since tissues are also paper products like toilet paper, you might be wondering if you can flush them. Unlike tissues, toilet paper is specially designed to dissolve quickly in order not to clog your toilet. However, tissues are made to absorb more moisture, which makes them bad for your plumbing system. Even Kleenex tissues are not safe to flush, although they might seem different and more plumbing-friendly than other tissue brands.

Of course, if you flush them once or twice, it won’t become a problem. But if you do it regularly, it will definitely clog your toilet.

#7. Flushing Q-Tips and Dental Floss

Flushing Q-Tips down the toilet is one of the fastest ways to see it clogged. In most cases, those sticks will get stuck crosswise and literally collect everything that comes in the way. Since they are made of plastic, they will take very long to dissolve, and sooner or later, you will have to do some unclogging.

But what about dental floss? It’s so tiny and light that it may seem it could hardly cause any trouble. However, that’s not true. Dental floss can quickly get tangled and catch all the dirt down the pipes. Also, it easily breaks, and instead of one floss, you will have many flosses in your plumbing that catch dirt, debris, hair, and other waste. In no time, you will start to experience problems with your toilet, which would require immediate attention.

Some people buy biodegradable dental floss instead, but it’s also NOT a good thing to throw in your toilet. However, if you throw it into your compost bin, you can both have oral hygiene while being eco-friendly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is the Best Way to Unclog a Toilet if I Don’t Have a Plunger?

If your toilet gets clogged but you don’t have a plunger, don’t worry – you can still unclog it in different ways. For example, you can try pouring hot water down the drain, which will in most cases dissolve the clog.

Will a Toilet Unclog Itself Over Time?

Most things that get clogged in the toilet will dissolve after some time. However, depending on what you threw down the drain, it might take anywhere from a day or two to a couple of weeks. Most people wouldn’t want to wait that long, so it’s best to call a plumber or try to unclog it by yourself right away.

What to Flush Down the Toilet to Unclog it?

Sometimes, you don’t have to use a plunger or a plumbing snake to unclog the toilet. For example, you can get rid of most clogs using only vinegar and baking soda. Mix them up and pour down the toilet, but be careful since they might create bubbles and splash around the toilet. You can also try using household bleach. Pour two cups, and after a few minutes, add a cup of powdered soap and wait for twenty-five minutes. Then, simply flush the toilet, and the problem should be solved.

Final Thoughts

Many items that seem flushable are actually not good for your toilet. They won’t do any harm if you throw them down once or twice, but if you do it on a regular basis, you will have problems in the future.

To better understand what can be flushed and what can’t, and if you do end up with a clog, use our guides to unclog your toilet yourself or call professional help.

Plunger Comparison Guide

sink plunger vs toilet plunger

Let’s face it: a clogged toilet or sink is a real pain in the drain. And when it happens, most of us will grab any plunger within arm’s reach and hope for the best. But what if we told you that not all plungers are created equal?

That’s right, folks – using the wrong plunger for the job can leave you feeling like a total DIY dud, when in reality it’s the plunger that’s to blame.

In this article, we’re going to give you the scoop on sink plungers vs toilet plungers and what makes them so different.

The Flange Factor

When you compare these two plungers, you’ll notice that the only major difference is in the flange. The flange is a fancy term for a rubber piece that sits inside the rubber cup of a toilet plunger and comes in all sorts of shapes. It may not look like much, but it serves a crucial purpose: to seal the drain pipe and create a more powerful suction force.

Now, the flange is something you’ll only find on toilet plungers. Why? Because it’s what prevents the plunger from getting filled with toilet water. And let’s be real, nobody wants that. If you’ve ever turned a flange inside out after a few pumps, you were actually using a sink plunger.

Sink plungers don’t have flanges, but their design allows them to form a seal on a flat surface, making them perfect for sinks but not so much for toilets.

Plunge Like a Pro Tip: It’s always a good idea to keep multiple plungers on hand. Sink plungers won’t do the job for a toilet, and using a toilet plunger for a sink isn’t exactly the height of hygiene. Plus, having separate plungers for each job will prevent any accidental mix-ups. Bonus points if you buy them in different colors – your future self will thank you.

How to Unclog Sinks and Toilets Using a Plunger

We know that clogged sinks and toilets are no laughing matter, but let’s face it, plungers can be funny-looking things. So, while we’re here to help you learn how to properly use a plunger, let’s have some fun with it, shall we?

Sink Clog? No Prob

The good news is that unclogging a sink with a plunger is pretty straightforward.

Find the overflow opening, which is that small hole near the sink. Now, let’s be real, we’re not talking about an emotional overflow (although that could be a contributing factor to a sink clog, right?).

Cover that hole up, so your plunger gets a good suction, and place the plunger over the clogged drain. Get some water running until the rubber cup is fully covered, and then start plunging.

A few up-and-down strokes should do the trick, but keep at it until the water starts draining smoothly. To make sure everything’s clear, run hot water for a few minutes.

Toilet Clog? We’ve Got You

Let’s face it, no one wants to deal with a toilet clog, but it happens to the best of us. Here’s how to unclog your toilet with a plunger like a pro.

First things first, turn off the water supply to the toilet to avoid any nasty overflow situations. Now, position the plunger over the drain, making sure to cover the rubber flange with water.

Make sure you’ve got a good seal, and then start plunging. Don’t be afraid to give it some force, but make sure you don’t break the seal. The suction should do the trick and eventually remove the clog.

Repeat this a few times until the water drains freely. If you used any chemicals to help unclog the toilet, make sure to wear some gloves and safety glasses.

After a few rounds with the plunger, flush the toilet to make sure it’s working properly.

Accordion Plunger? Accordion to Who?

Okay, let’s talk about accordion plungers.

They may look fancy, but they’re not always the best option. The plastic material doesn’t fit as snugly as rubber does, and it could even scratch up your toilet bowl. So, be gentle with it and don’t force it.

Final Words (and Sounds)

Remember, the sink and toilet plungers may look alike, but they’re not interchangeable. It’s a good idea to have both on hand, and to keep them in separate colors to avoid any mix-ups.

Follow the steps above, and you should be able to fix any clog with ease. And, if all else fails, just remember that the sound of a plunger is basically just a funky beat waiting to happen.

Poop Clogged Toilet Guide (4 Tricks)

A poop-clogged toilet is one of the most common bathroom problems. We’ve all dealt with it, or had another unlucky soul do it for us, at one point or another. While the situation may not feel lucky, there is a silver lining.

If the clog was caused by a foreign object, not poop, you might’ve had a bigger problem on your hands. But most of the time poop and organic waste can be broken down much easier.

In today’s guide, we are going to show you some of the easiest DIY tricks and methods to dissolve poop clogging your toilet.

Clearing a Poop Toilet Clog – 4 Methods

Here are the top 4 approaches to clearing your toilet, from helpful tools to DIY non-toxic chemical solutions:

1. Using a Plunger (Typical Approach)

The plunger is a necessity in any home. A plunger can get you out of a lot of sticky situations and it’s one of the easiest ways to unclog a toilet.

There are a few different types of plungers but you’ll want to look for a toilet plunger with a flange (see below). Other plungers, flange-less toilet plungers, will still work but won’t be the most suitable. The benefit of a flange plunger is the way it securely fits into the drain and ensures an air-tight seal for the most effective plunge.

Follow these key steps for a perfect plunge:

  1. To prepare, throw on some old clothes, put some newspaper or towels on the floor around the toilet, and make sure that the water-level isn’t too high.
  2. Next, completely submerge the plunger, neatly cover the drain hole, and pump the plunger up and down vigorously for about ten seconds. If you push or pull too hard it could result in dirty water splashing all over the floor, so be careful.
  3. Repeat this process a couple of times to build pressure and then pull the plunger sharply to break the vacuum and loosen the clog. You should notice the water start to drain out.
  4. Give it a flush! If everything is working smoothly then you can pack your plunger away again. If not, you might need to try one of our other methods.

If you’d like a more detailed plunging walkthrough then head over to this helpful article where we really get into it.

2. Vinegar And Baking Soda (Natural Dissolve Approach)

Most of the time a plunger can do a decent job unclogging the toilet, but when this method doesn’t work, the classic duo of baking soda and vinegar is a great non-toxic approach. These two ingredients are easy to find in your kitchen and won’t harm you or your drain. And let’s face it, what doesn’t baking soda and vinegar fix? Water stains, mildew in laundry, rust. They do it all.

In the bathroom this combination is used to clean surfaces, fight greasy or clogged drains, and deodorize. The method itself is pretty simple:

  1. Start by pouring a cup of baking soda into the toilet.
  2. Wait for a few minutes and let the solution sit.
  3. Then pour a cup of vinegar into the bowl. It’s important that the baking soda to vinegar ratio is equal.
    1. If you’re feeling fiery, now’s the time to add some red food coloring! Granted, a toilet isn’t a volcano, but there’s nothing stopping you if you feel like strolling down memory lane.
  4. Wait again for the mixture to create a fizzy chemical reaction. Let it permeate the clog and sink in for around twenty minutes. The clog is busy loosening during this time.
  5. Finally,  flush the toilet! This test flush will confirm that your chemical concoction has worked and the waste has been removed.

3. Hot Water And Detergent (Another Natural Dissolve Approach)

Another successful combination is hot water and detergent. Just like baking soda and vinegar, these are easy-to-find household items and the unclogging process is very simple.

  1. First, boil 1.5 gallons of water. While the water is boiling, pour some detergent into the toilet bowl. If you can’t find any detergent, you can use dishwashing liquid. Or find any bar of soap, slice it into tiny pieces and throw those into the bowl.
  2. Once the water is ready, start pouring carefully into the bowl.
  3. Let the detergent and hot water sit for at least 20 minutes.
  4. Finally, flush the toilet to see if you were successful!

3. Using A Toilet Auger (When All Else Fails Approach)

A toilet auger, or toilet snake, is another very popular tool used for unclogging toilets. However, we really recommend you first try using a plunger for less severe clogs. A toilet auger is a more serious tool mostly used for serious clogs where a plunger just doesn’t cut it.

This tool consists of a few parts, including a medium-sized cable that is designed to snake through the drain and break down any type of clog. The cable is isolated in a hollow tube which is covered by soft rubber so the auger won’t damage or scratch the toilet bowl. If you want to learn more about augers check out another of our helpful articles.

When you get down to using your auger, there are just five simple steps to follow:

  1. Insert the auger into the drain.
  2. Turn the toilet snake in a clockwise motion, pushing it deeper into the drain. Crank the handle until the whole cable has made it through.
  3. Slowly remove the toilet auger, this time turning the handle counterclockwise. This retraction will pull or break up the clog.
  4. When the cable has retracted fully then the clog has been successfully removed. The water level should return to normal.
  5. Perform a test flush to make sure everything’s flowing smoothly and clean up whatever mess might’ve been made.

A Few Words In The End

There’s more than one simple method to unclog a toilet. We recommend trying each of the above as needed – you can also try multiple options on the same clog if you don’t come right.

If you have a very severe clog and none of the methods above work, we recommend you call a plumber. But for your typical clogs, these methods will take care of your toilet troubles. You’ll be on your way in no time!

Plunging a Toilet Guide

plunging a toilet

There’s no denying that toilet clogs are an inescapable part of life. As the water level rises so does our panic. It’s a problem that needs solving and a plunger could just be your solution – there’s a reason they’re referred to as a plumber’s best friend! 95% of the time a plunger will do the trick making it a crucial tool in any house. Extra stubborn clogs may need to be treated with a chemical cleaner or an auger, but the plunger should always be your first line of defense.

A plunger consists of a rubber suction cup attached to the end of a wooden or plastic stick. When your toilet clogs the suction created by the plunger helps loosens and break up the blockage allowing the water to drain and return to normal flushing.

3 Types of Plungers

Plungers are extremely common and cost-effective and can be found in all hardware stores. There are a few different plunger types – let’s talk about the different kinds and when to use them.

Type 1. Sink/Cup Plunger

The most common plunger, sink plungers only work on flat surfaces making it less suitable for your curved toilet bowl and better for showers, baths, sinks and basins. Pushing the cup down creates a positive force of pressure, and pulling the cup back creates a negative pressure. This alternating pressure jostles the clog back and forth, loosening the waste.

Type 2. Toilet/Flange Plungers

You guessed it, this is the plunger for your toilet problem. The flange refers to the flexible rubber base. If necessary, this flap folds into the cup making the plunger suitable for flat drains too. When it comes to toilets, however, the flap stays exposed and fits neatly into your toilet drain with the thicker rubber cup fitting snugly over the curve of the bowl, preventing air from coming through and securing suction.

If your toilet and sink both need plunging, we recommend buying a cup plunger and a toilet plunger. Using the same plunger for both is unhygienic and increases the risk of illness and contamination.

Type 3. Accordion Plungers

This is the most difficult plunger to use and is only to be used in extreme cases. The accordion plunger has a much more rigid plastic than cup and toilet plungers. No air must be allowed to pass in and out of the plunger cup and correctly positioning this less flexible plastic can be tricky and risks scratching your toilet. This plunger is more powerful than the others, however, make sure you use it with care.

How To Plunge a Toilet

Now that you know your plungers, here’s a step-by-step guide that will help you efficiently plunge any toilet.

Step 1- The Preparation

Make sure your water-level isn’t too high. Vigorous plunging may cause splashback and drench you and your surroundings. In case of splashing, we recommend putting newspaper down on the floor around the toilet and wearing old clothes. If you have already tried a drain cleaner be sure to wear gloves while plunging to protect your skin.

Step 2- The Positioning

Place the plunger directly over the drain hole. Make sure it completely covers the hole so that proper vacuum suction can be created. Keep the handle of the plunger straight down at a vertical angle. This helps in creating better suction, as opposed to plunging at a slanted angle.

The plunger should be completely submerged in the water, with the plunger’s cup at the halfway point of the water level in the bowl at least. Fully submerging the plunger is what creates suction – without enough water and too much air the plunger won’t be able to pull and push the clog.

Step 3- The Performance

Once you have confirmed the plunger positioning and the level of water, it’s time to start the real work. Push down on the plunger until you feel it touching the drain hole, and then pull it back. Be careful not to pull back so far that you release the suction. Continue this motion a couple times before finally pulling out the plunger completely.

Repeat this process as needed in spurts of about fifteen seconds until you notice the water start draining out. Unless you’re faced with a very solid object, most toilet clogs can be resolved with this approach.

Step 4- The Perusal

Once you are satisfied that the clog has been removed, reconnect the water supply to the toilet. Then, flush the toilet once to see if it drains properly. If the toilet does not flush normally then you may have a more serious problem on your hands.

There’s no need to panic however as there are other powerful solutions out there like drain cleaners and augers.

Yes, the P-words were too tempting not to run with after starting with preparation and positioning. So try to remember the four Ps and you’ll be a plunging pro pronto!

Final Plunging Thoughts

Always remember, a plunger is a sound investment in your household so don’t default to the cheapest option. A good quality plunger is reliable and can last years with proper maintenance. Keep your plunger clean and dry when not in use. If your plunger is a bit old and showing signs of wear and tear, it may not create a tight enough seal. To fix this issue, you can tie an old cloth around the ending to block any leaks that would hamper suction, but this is only a temporary fix.

Before using a plunger try running it under some hot water. This will soften up the plastic and allow for a more secure seal to form. Do not plunge your toilet if you recently used toxic chemicals. Often these chemicals are corrosive and can cause serious harm to you or your bathroom should splashing happen, which is highly likely.

Plunging your toilet doesn’t have to be the undertaking it sounds like. With the right considerations plunging is a straightforward and effective process that can help resolve almost every clog.

We hope these tips help resolve all of your plunging questions and concerns. Good luck and happy plunging!

Toilet Unclog Guide of 2023

how to unclog a toilet

A clogged toilet is one of the most common misfortunes we all experience. Have you ever been at someone else’s house and clogged their toilet?

You look around frantically and eventually find the plunger, to immense relief.

However, the plunger won’t always cut it – here are a few different methods and techniques for you to consider.


Unclogging a Toilet – 4 Methods

Here are 4 different methods to unclog your toilet the right way.


This is the best method and should be used if you know for sure that there is a foreign material causing your toilet to clog. We recommend using a plunger of good quality, as they form better seals and are overall more effective.

When unclogging the toilet, make sure that the plunger is fully submerged in water; the suction has to come from water and not air. Also, the plunger should be covering the whole hole. For clean up purposes, lay down newspaper around your toilet to help keep your bathroom clean.

Plumbing Snake

using a plumbing snake

A plumbing snake or auger is one of your best bets to unclog a build-up of waste material in the drainpipe. A plumbing snake is a flexible coiled wire which can reach inside your toilet, ‘snaking’ through the twists and turns of the pipes. Once you feel the waste impediment, start twisting and turning the coil. This movement will break up the mass into smaller, flushable pieces, unblocking your drainpipe.

A plumbing snake can be used for other drains around the house as well, although we recommend purchasing a separate snake so you don’t have to use the same one for all drains.

DIY Drain Cleaner

You can use products available in your kitchen to create a concoction certain to dissolve many clogs from your drains. Particularly if organic waste causes a clog, a drain cleaner is a highly effective method for removing the waste.using a drain cleaner in your toilet

To start, heat up a half-gallon of water or more. The water should be warm enough to change the temperature of the water around the clog. Once you have warm water on hand, pour one part baking soda and two parts vinegar into the warm water. We recommend 1 cup of baking soda, 2 cups of vinegar, although the quantity can vary. After combining, pour the warm water into the toilet bowl from waist heigh or higher so that it has considerable force when it enters the bowl.

Let the toilet remain undisturbed for at least 5-6 hours or overnight for best results. This is one of the most trusted methods to clear out organic clogs of any kind in drains around the house.

Store-bought Enzymes

Enzymes also work on the same premise as the method above. Instead of creating an at-home solution, you purchase these at the store, and they can be stronger in comparison. Enzymes will break down the clog using a chemical process.

Quick Tip

When you know for sure that your toilet is clogged, don’t continue flushing. Instead of dislodging the blockage as you may hope, repeated flushing will only result in an overflowing toilet. Instead, when you notice a clog, turn off the flapper so no more water enters the toilet bowl and then use one of the methods above. With these steps, we hope you’re able to solve all of your future clogging needs quickly and conveniently.

Unclog a Toilet When Nothing Works

If you have tried all of the above and nothing works, you can try a few more things. Here are 5 top methods to try when you need to unclog a toilet.

1. Baking Soda and Vinegar

baking soda and vinegar to unclog toilet

If you have a toilet you need to unclog, using a mixture of baking soda and vinegar is the first step that you should try. To start, you’ll want to gather baking soda, white vinegar, cups, and water. With these items ready, it’s time to make a mixture.

Take a bowl and pour two cups of water and a single cup of baking soda. Mix the solution, and then pour it down the toilet bowl. Then, pour two cups of vinegar into the bowl and let it rest for 5-10 minutes. You need to allow the vinegar to mix with the baking soda as much as possible. It will cause a bubbling reaction in the water which can help break down waste blocking the toilet.

Not only should the reaction help dissolve materials that block your toilet, but the mixture will also reach places that a plunger can’t. If you want to further help the mixture along, you can also add a gallon of boiling water which will help with the process. However, do note that you should wait at least 6-8 hours before flushing the toilet after trying this method.

2. Dish Soap and Boiling Waterunclog toilet wiht soap and boiling water

If you don’t want to go to the store, you can use the simplest items that every home has – dish soap and boiling water. First, you will need to bring a few liters of water to a warm temperature. Then, cut a few pieces of dish soap and put them in a bowl.

After preparing the ingredients, pour the mixture into the toilet bowl and then wait for some time. After a few minutes, flush the toilet. This approach is one of the simplest solutions that will successfully loosen materials that have clogged your toilet.

3. Wire Coat Hanger

If you have a wire hanger at home, it can be a quite useful tool for unclogging your toilet. But first, cover one end with an old towel so that you don’t damage the bowl. Then, insert that end into the bowl and push it down the drain while twisting the hanger. Continue pushing until the water starts to drain again. This approach is an ideal method for unclogging the toilet if the clog is just a few inches from the drain.

4. Plunger or Suction Cup

A suction cup, or plunger, is another tool that can help with unclogging your toilet. However, you will need to buy tools specially designed for unblocking materials from the drain. For toilets, in particular, you’ll be able to buy a plunger with a long handle so your hands won’t get dirty.

Simply place the cup into the bowl so that it completely covers the hole to create a vacuum. Then, press firmly and lower it to create a suction effect. However, you should know that a suction cup can only suck small materials, and won’t be affected with larger plugs.

5. Enzyme Product

An enzyme product turns most plugs into liquid, completely or partially, allowing them to drain more easily and unclog the toilet. Most enzyme products are affordable and you can be found in most stores. However, note that enzyme products only work on organic waste, so if anything non-organic is blocking the drain, you will have to use a different tool.

When using an enzyme product, make sure that you read the instructions first. Then, based on those instructions, pour a certain amount down the bowl and wait a few minutes for the block to dissolve. If the waste is organic, when you flush, you will notice that the toilet is not clogged anymore. Be sure to read the product description to understand if there are any risks to using the product.

Prevent Toilet Clogging

If your toilet clogs frequently, you are probably doing something wrong. There are a few things you can do to prevent the toilet from clogging, so let’s check them out.

1. Don’t Flushing Inappropriate Items

what not to flush down a toilet This is the primary tip to consider if your toilet clogs often – what is your toilet-flushing routine like? For example, many people tend to flush dirty water down their bowls, which is not a good thing to do. Dirty water might contain tiny rocks or other objects which can cause trouble in the long run. As another example, sometimes people try to dispose of non-organic items by flushing them down the toilet.

Anything not human waste or toilet paper should never be flushed. If you don’t live alone, you might want to attach a list of things that should and shouldn’t be thrown down the toilet.

Read our full guide of items to never flush down a toilet.

2. Double-Flush More Often

Especially if you throw a lot of toilet paper down the bowl, you should use double flush more often. Essentially, flush partway through toilet use to clear initial waste and paper, and then flush again at the end. Otherwise, if you try to flush large amounts of paper or waste at once, you have a larger risk of clogs.

3. Clear the Toilet Surface

Most people use the top of the toilet’s tank as an extra space to store supplies such as soap, brushes, and other bathroom items. However, although it might seem convenient, it’s not a good idea because some of those items might fall into the bowl. If they reach the drain, it might be difficult to pull them out and will eventually cause a clog. Therefore, we recommend using other storage solutions to avoid accidentally dropping objects into the toilet.

4. Trace the Growth of Roots

Sometimes, a clog might be caused by tree roots near the sewer lines. If there are trees around your house, they might reach the pipes and even penetrate them, which would cause clogs. It doesn’t happen often, but if you suspect that the tree is causing a clog, you should call a professional to resolve the situation. Especially if you’ve tried several other solutions with no success, consider investigating if there may be a larger issue like this one at play.

5. Don’t Use Strong Chemical Drain Cleaners

Picking the wrong cleaner for the toilet is one of the things that can easily cause clogs in the future. The fact is, strong chemicals can cause a chemical reaction with the pipes, making them corrosive. When the pipe gets corroded, it will lead to clogs sooner or later. Practice responsible cleaner usage and toilet maintenance to avoid clogs in the long term.

You may consider using homemade toilet cleaner recipes.


In this article, we mentioned 5 different methods to effectively remove clogs from your toilet. However, if your toilet clogs too often, we recommend looking into the root cause of your clogs to see if you can prevent the problem from occurring in the first place.

From avoiding disposal or inorganic waste to exercising proper toilet maintenance, we hope these tips help you resolve and avoid all future clogging issues. And, ultimately, if you try all the methods above and nothing works, you can always call for professional help.