We all fear a toilet clog. The situation is less than ideal. You flush the toilet, but the water begins to rise instead of going down the drain. Something unseen has clogged the toilet drain, leading to a backup. If you’re lucky, the water will only rise so high. If you’re unlucky, the ensuing water damage of an overflowing toilet is a hassle. For the most part, it’s simple to tell when your toilet is clogged. For some, not so much, though.
Signs of a Clogged Toilet
For the most part, the signs of a clogged toilet are straightforward. You can look down into the bowl and immediately determine whether the toilet has clogged. Other times, however, the clog is less noticeable. You may flush multiple times throughout the day before realizing the toilet has clogged.
Here are a few symptoms of a clogged toilet:
- Gurgling – If your toilet has a severe clog, you’ll notice a gurgling drain. This gurgling sound means the drainage of your plumbing system is not receiving enough ventilation. The water when you flush is fighting the pressure, leading to gurgling and sputtering.
- Slow Drainage – Another common symptom of a clogged toilet is slow drainage. When your toilet drains slowly, it is a sign that a blockage has occurred within the pipe. The water is fighting to pass the blockage, leading to a backup. Think of the interstate during rush hour.
- Pungent Smells – Your plumbing system has a trap to prevent sewer gases from entering the house. When the pressure in the drain is too great, all the water drains out. There is no blockage, so the sewer gases enter the household, leading to a pungent smell.
Why Does My Toilet Clog?
There are a variety of reasons why your toilet may clog, the most common being too much debris within the bowl. The second most common cause is someone flushing non-flushable items. These items usually include feminine hygiene products, wet wipes, and toys from children.
- Low Flow Toilets – Low flow toilets are beneficial to homeowners who want to reduce their water waste. However, old low flow toilets tend to lack the power to clear the drain and trap. The result is a clog.
- Clogged Trap – Every toilet has an S-shaped trap between the drain and bowl. On occasion, this trap will become blocked by toilet paper. If objects are stuck in the trap, nothing can past.
- Sewer Line – A clog within the sewer line is a messy, smelly situation. Furthermore, with a sewer line clog, you’ll likely notice recurring toilet clogs. No amount of plunging can rectify this clog, unfortunately. You’ll need an expert plumber.