how-to-unclog-a-toilet-pic3Without a doubt a 'Plunger' can solve clogged toilet problems most of the time. The best part is that you can save the cost of a plumber coming at maybe a hundrfed bucks or more in less than five minutes.

There are two tools that can take care of a clogged toilet efficiently. One is a toilet plunger. We mentioned this at the outset, most of the time, ( I mean in the high 90% range, this is the right tool), to deal with a clogged toilet. For a really tough obstruction that is caught in the trap, a toilet auger is the second choice.

How Does a Toilet Plunger Work

Plungers work on a simple concept, pressure. The plunger generates pressure on the clog to force it through the trap. This is usually successful, since it is too much volume that clogs toilets in most instances.

This can be very effective, since it is too much volume that clogs toilets in most instances.

Purchasing a Plunger

A toilet plunger is a very simple device. It is a long handle connected to a rubber bulb. The rubber end is designed to compress. When properly seated in the toilet, quickly compressing the plunger generates pressure that forces the clog through the toilet.

You will also find some newer styles that look almost like an accordion. These are designed to generate even more pressure.

Toilet plungers are readily available at home supply and hardware stores. Even department stores will have them for sale. A plunger for a toilet will have an added flange at the bottom that helps to concentrate the pressure. This differs from a sink plunger that has no added flange. Look for one with a bell that is about six inches and diameter and five inches high. One will cost between $5 and $15.

Plunging a Toilet

Remove everything from the area that could be damaged by dirty water. Some water will probably splash, move anything you don't want ruined. Have a mop and rags nearby, just in case.

For the plunger to do its job, it needs to be firmly against the bowl to create a seal. This will generate the maximum pressure. At the risk of sounding repetitive, make sure the plunger is seating firmly against the bottom of the toilet bowl.

Try to push the plunger down quickly and straight. You are likely to get some splashing, be prepared for that. It will often take two or three tries before the clog breaks free. Don't get discouraged, even a dozen tries only takes a few minutes.

If the water level is up near the rim, you may need to get a small pail and bail some of the water out. A plunger will displace water when it is used. In addition plunging will agitate the water. A high water level will cause splashing and spillover.

 toilet-plunger-pic3When you use the plunger repeatedly, you may notice the water going down little by little. This is not a bad thing, although it is more satisfying when it goes down in a big whoosh! When the water level gets low enough, you can try flushing the toilet again. You should get the whoosh, this time. If not, try the plunger again.

The plunger does a dirty job and it goes through some less than desirable water. After the clog is cleared flush the toilet two or three more times. Use the fresh water to rinse off the plunger. You can use a toilet brush and some toilet cleaner to further disinfect it.

When toilet clogs are a regular event you may want to keep the plunger close by. Some homeowners have opted to keep it behind the toilet. A nearby closet would be another choice.

It is a good idea to disinfect the rest of the area around the toilet. You likely had some splashing of the dirty water. Some kind of a bleach based cleaning product will kill all the germs and bacteria.


The 'Introduction' to this series on 'Using a Toilet Plunger' talked about the potential cost you might be facing for fixing your garbage disposal. In addition, the simple solutions and the potential problems were discussed.

In 'Step One', we discussed where to go to purchase a plunger and what kind to get.

'Plunging a Toilet' is the article that told you what to do, what you should get out of the way and how to clean up afterwards.


Were you able to successfully use a toilet plunger to solve your problem? This tool is a champ when it comes to unclogging toilets. Did you have to go out and buy one? It is still cheaper than having a plumber come out. Now that you have it, you will be able to quickly deal with problems in the future.

Now that you are done with this project, what are you going to do next? For a homeowner, there is always a list of repairs that you can tackle. Since this one went so well, you can take a look at your list and try something else.