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Unclogging Toilet Drains

Project Overview

Unclogging Toilet Drains

A clogged toilet is one of the most common household plumbing problems. If your toilet overflows or flushes poorly, try clearing it with a plunger. A plunger uses air to force clogs out of drains, so it's easy to use and doesn't damage pipes. If you use a hand snake or a closet snake – one made specifically for use inside toilets – take care that you don't bang the porcelain sides of the bowl. Porcelain is tough – up to a point. You wouldn't want to crack your toilet and end up replacing the whole thing.

2 Steps

  1. Clearing a Toilet with a Plunger
  2. Clearing a Toilet with a Closet Snake
Clearing a Toilet with a Plunger

Step 1

Clearing a Toilet with a Plunger

Place the plunger over the hole in the toilet. Plunge up and down rapidly, keeping the plunger under water and lifting it only an inch or so on every upstroke. Keep doing this for a minute or two. If it doesn't clear, use a closet snake.

Clearing a Toilet with a Closet Snake

Step 2

Clearing a Toilet with a Closet Snake

Feed the end of the cable into the toilet, taking care not to scratch the bowl. Crank the handle clockwise to snag the obstruction. Continue cranking while pulling the obstruction out.

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Project Details

Skill Level: Beginner

Time: 1 hour

Before you start, read this »

Due to differing conditions, tools, and individual skills, The Home Depot® assumes no responsibility for any damages, injuries suffered, or losses incurred as a result of attempting to replicate any of the home improvement ideas portrayed in this website Before beginning any home improvement project, review it thoroughly to ensure you or your contractor can finish the project and if any doubts or questions remain, consult local experts or authorities. Because codes and regulations vary greatly, you always should check with authorities to ensure that your project complies with all applicable local codes and regulations. Always read and observe all of the safety precautions provided by any tool or equipment manufacturer, and follow all accepted safety procedures.


  • Closet snake

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