3 Ways to Fix a Clogged Toilet

toilet, 3 ways to fix a clogged toilet at Mathews Plumbing

3 Ways to Fix a Clogged Toilet


Are you struggling with a clogged toilet? If you’re trying to flush your toilet and nothing happens, or the bowl fills with water, don’t worry!

As inconvenient and annoying as it is, toilet emergencies are a fact of life, and most can be easily fixed. With a couple easy steps, your toilet will soon be functioning properly.

How to Easily Unclog a Toilet

If you find yourself flushing your toilet, and the bowl fills with water or nothing happens, it’s most likely a simple fix clog.

The most important thing you can do in this situation is don’t flush a second time. Forcing the toilet to flush again releases gallons of water into the toilet bowl and will cause an overflow. A second flush will only create another disaster, in addition your current problem.

Remember: don’t flush again!

Here are a couple solutions to fix your clogged toilet. All solutions will effectively get rid of the clog, but take various amounts of time and effort to get rid of the clog completely.

We’ll start with the easiest method, and recommend you walk through each step as you try to fix the clog.


1. Unclog with Dish Soap

No plunger? No problem, use dish soap! This method is the easiest and least messy of all our solutions, but it will take about 30 minutes for the solution to work properly. If you are in a hurry, we recommend skipping ahead to next method.

  1. Wait about 10-15 minutes before trying to unclog the toilet, as some water might drain on its own.
  2. Squeeze a lot of liquid dish soap, about one cup, or pieces of bar soap into the toilet bowl.
  3. Fill a bucket with hot water and carefully pour hot water into the toilet bowl without overflowing it. The hot water will dissolve the dish soap and will act as a lubricating agent to un-wedge the clog.
  4. Wait another 15 minutes for the soap to dislodge the clog.
  5. The water level will go down after 15 minutes, so pour more hot water into the bowl to restart the lubrication process.
  6. After another 15 minutes of waiting, you can flush the toilet and the clog will be gone!

2. Unclog with a Plunger

Learn how to fix a Clogged Toilet with Mathew's Plumbing

If the dish soap doesn’t slide the clog out of the way, you’ll need a plunger. Plungers fit over the toilet drain and will force water down the drain and dislodge the debris clogging the drain.

Before you try plunging, make sure your first plunge is soft. The plunger is full of air and a hard push will release a massive air bubble in the clogged toilet bowl, causing a large amount of water to splash back at you.

  1. Wait 10-15 minutes, as some water might drain on its own.
  2. Place your plunger into the toilet bowl and rest the mouth of the plunger into the mouth of the toilet drain.
  3. Softly push the plunger into the mouth of the drain, and then give a few stronger pulses to heave the debris down the drain.
  4. Repeatedly plunge a few times until the drain is clear.

3. Unclog with an Auger

If your toilet is still clogged after using a plunger, try using a toilet auger, or toilet snake to extend into the drain and unclog the problem. The claw of the snake will break up whatever’s clogging the drain, or will pull the material back up, out of the way.

  1. Place the claw of the auger in the toilet drain.
  2. Crank the handle until the auger feels tight, as it has dislodged the clogged debris.
  3. Wait until the water starts to recede.
  4. Slowly pull the auger back out.

If your toilet is still clogged, the clog might be a more advanced problem for a professional to help with.

A chronically clogged toilet is caused by drain failure and should be examined by a professional plumber. If your toilet has had chronic clogging, it should be examined by a professional, as the problem might be more serious or be caused by pipe damage.

Call Mathews Plumbing at 208-357-3439 for further help or to schedule an examination of your toilet drain.

Infographic showing 3 ways to unclog a toilet from mathews plumbing