At best, having a clogged toilet is an inconvenience; at worst it’s a plumbing emergency. Your toilet can become clogged for several reasons. In order to figure out the best way to unclog a blocked toilet, it’s important for home owners to be familiar with the reasons toilets clog in the first place.
1. Foreign Objects in Toilets
One of the most common reasons toilets clog is due to foreign objects being accidentally flushed. (If you have small children, this should be one of the first options you consider.) Toys, toothbrushes, razors, plastic caps and other things commonly found in the bathroom can easily fall into your toilet, causing a panicked toddler to flush the item down before mom or dad sees where it’s been. Other common objects that can clog toilets — that are often flushed intentionally — include feminine hygiene products, cotton balls and cotton swabs, baby wipes and diapers, hair and paper towels. Take care that none of these things are flushed down your toilets and you will have fewer problems with clogging.
Sometimes foreign objects can be removed from your toilet using a plunger, in other cases, especially if the clog is large, you should call a plumber.
2. Low Water Pressure
Another common reason that toilets clog is due to low water pressure in your home. Low water pressure can be the result of an issue with your town or city’s water system, or it can be a sign of a serious plumbing problem in your home. If you have low water pressure, first call your city or town’s public works department. If they cannot detect a problem, it’s time to call your plumber.
3. Old Cast Iron Plumbing
Older homes with cast iron plumbing can also contribute to problems with clogged toilets. Aging cast iron pipes often have uneven surfaces that can catch hair and debris that would pass right through newer pipes. If you live in an older home and can’t determine the reason your toilets clog, it might be a good idea to have your plumber inspect your cast iron pipes.