It’s like a bad dream or a movie. You flush your toilet – like hundreds of times before – but instead of everything flushing down the drain, the bowl quickly fills with water. Soon that water spills over the rim and onto the floor. Help! Why is my toilet overflowing?
Don’t worry, we’re here to help! First, shut off the water. The water supply knob should be on the wall behind your toilet. This will hopefully stop the unwanted river running across your bathroom floor. Now it’s time to diagnose the possible reason your toilet is overflowing and remedy the situation.
How to Unclog Your Toilet
A toilet clog is the most likely reason that your bowl is overflowing. The clog might be due waste, toilet paper or something else you flushed.
Method #1: The Plunger
A plunger is the fastest and easiest way to loosen a clogged toilet. If you have one, a flange plunger works best on a toilet drain. These are the plungers with the rubber flap that sticks out from the cup. It allows for a tighter seal.
Insert the rubber flap into the drain opening of your toilet and place the cup snuggly around the outside. If you’ve established a good seal, you should feel the water moving with each plunge.
Plunge up and down for 20 seconds or so. If you hear water gurgling after, the clog is moving. If not, repeat plunging procedure several more times until you can successfully flush your toilet.
Method #2: The Auger
If you have a stubborn clog that doesn’t move with the plunger, a toilet auger is your next best bet.
An auger, sometimes called a “snake,” is a long metal coil that you insert into your toilet drain. As the auger uncoils, it travels through the pipes to the clog site. By maneuvering the auger, you can hopefully knock the clog loose.
Unwind your auger with slow steady pressure. When you feel you’ve reached the clog, push a pull until the path clears. Turn on the water and make a test flush.
Other Reasons Your Toilet is Overflowing
While a clog is the most likely cause of toilet overflowing, it’s not the only reason. Here are a few others to consider:
High Filler Float
If water is spilling out from your toilet tank vs your toilet bowl, it may be due to a faulty filler float. The float is the ball in your tank that rises with the incoming water after you flush. When this ball reaches a set point, it turns off the water supply. If the ball rises too high, water will flow out the sides of your tank.
To fix this situation, adjust or replace your faulty filler ball. A certified plumber can make sure this is done properly.
Sewer Line Clog
A clog in your sewer line will eventually back up to your toilet. The clog may be the result of items flushed in the toilet or washed down the drain. It could also be from tree roots in your sewer line.
Have your sewer line cleaned regularly to avoid clogs. If you think you may have a clogged sewer line, you can rent a sewer line auger or hire a professional to do the job. A professional plumber can also use a small plumbing inspection camera to identify any issues within your sewer line.
Septic System Problems
If your home operates on a septic system, an overflowing toilet could mean your tank is full and causing things to backup.
To solve this problem, call a professional to flush the system and return your plumbing to normal working order.
Your Toilet Needs to be Replaced
An old toilet that is cracked or leaks will continue to cause problems. Consider the signs that your toilet needs to be replaced and hire a certified plumber to do the job properly. A new toilet should serve you well for many years.
Dallas Area Toilet Experts
Overflowing toilets and wastewater on your bathroom floor are no fun. Benjamin Franklin, your local punctual plumber, handles all manner of overflowing and clogged toilets in the Dallas area. Call or contact us today to make sure your toilet is going with the flow in the right direction.