Toilet clogs are one of the most common plumbing problems. Any plumber has been bombarded with calls and questions about what to do when a toilet keeps clogging. Toilet clogs can be nasty. If the sight and smell aren’t enough, sometimes toilets will overflow and cause water damage. You can plunge the toilet, or even have a plumber come and take care of the issue for you, but like many undesirable conditions, prevention is the key. There are a few easy-to-follow tips that will keep your waste down your toilet and not on your floors.
Toilets can only handle so much with a single flush, so with bigger jobs, try flushing the toilet twice. While it may be technically possible to clog a toilet with only human waste, almost all clogs are due to an excess of toilet paper. Sometimes it takes a lot of paper to get the job done, but by flushing half the paper down at a time, you’re greatly reducing your chances of creating a clog.
If it doesn’t come from your body and it isn’t toilet paper, it shouldn’t be flushed down your toilet. A toilet is not a glorified garbage can; the toilet serves a very specific purpose. Baby wipes and diapers can smell bad, but instead of trying to flush them down the toilet, invest in a diaper pail, which is basically a special garbage designed to lock in the smell. Other items that are frequently flushed but shouldn’t be include cotton swabs, dental floss, and feminine hygiene products.
If you’re having frequent clogs and your toilet is backing up, it is possible it has less to do with what you’re flushing than what is in your main sewer line. Tree roots are the natural enemy to any plumber, as they can grow into underground pipes and clog them up. If root growth is already rampant and causing problems, a plumber should come and snake out your pipes. Preventing root growth is easier; simply purchase plumbing solutions aimed at killing roots, follow the instructions on the bottle, and do this about once a year. The occasional toilet clog isn’t a huge deal and is easily solvable with a plunger, but if toilet clogs are becoming more common, it is time to start looking into methods of prevention. By following these tips you can save yourself a whole lot of hassle and a plumber visit.