What Do I Do If My Toilet Overflows?

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Heather Jones
Heather Jones
I'm Heather, an author passionate about home improvements. My writing is your guide to making homes better. Let's explore easy ways to enhance your living spaces, from small fixes to exciting projects. Join me on a journey of making your house a cozy and stylish haven.

If your toilet starts to overflow, you need to act quickly. Failing to do so could leave you with a mess. By learning what to do if your toilet overflows, you can prepare yourself for the situation and minimize the damage.


Turn Off the Water

As soon as your toilet starts to overflow, look for the shut-off valve. It should be located near the base of the toilet bowl. Turn it clockwise to turn off the water supply to your toilet. 

It’s important to note that not all toilets have this valve. If yours doesn’t have a valve, you should lift the lid of the tank. Then, find a way to hold the float in a position that prevents water from filling the tank. Watch the toilet for a few minutes to be certain the water will not continue to flow.

Clean the Water

You might not notice the overflow until it’s too late. This could mean you have a puddle of water on your floor. If there’s water on your bathroom floor, you should clean it as soon as possible.

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Leaving the water could cause an accident. Someone could slip on the liquid and fall onto a hard object. Therefore, you should grab some towels and immediately wipe up the water. If there is a large quantity of water, you might want to use a Shop-Vac to suck up the water. After the water is gone, be sure to disinfect the floor with a cleaning solution.

Try to Clear the Clog

Some overflows are caused by clogs. If a clog caused your overflow, you should use a plunger. You may be able to free the clog and stop the overflow. You may be able to use a sink plunger if you don’t have a toilet plunger. However, it’s not as efficient on toilet clogs as the toilet plunger.

You can also use a plumbing snake to try and clear the toilet. But most people don’t have this handy. Even if you do, there’s no guarantee it will clear the clog.

If you can see an object clogging the toilet, you can try to remove it yourself. Before doing so, put on a pair of rubber gloves. 

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A final option is to use a mixture of baking soda and vinegar. Pour about one cup of vinegar and one cup of baking soda in the toilet. Then, let it sit for eight hours or longer. The mixture could break down a clog in your toilet bowl.

Call a Plumber

If your overflow was caused by a simple clog, you might not need a plumber. However, there could be a more serious issue. You might need to call a plumber to have the situation resolved.

Once the plumber arrives, they can evaluate the situation. They might identify a clog or find another issue. In any case, they can take the steps needed to resolve the problem. By using plumber services, you can fix the issue and get your bathroom back. 

It’s important that you don’t waste time. A non-functional bathroom can be very difficult to live with. Even if you have another bathroom, your family could suffer. More importantly, you could make the problem worse. If you don’t identify and fix the issue quickly, the situation could escalate and require a major plumbing repair.

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In 2016, there were approximately 480,600 plumbing jobs in the U.S. This is because many homeowners and business owners have trouble with overflowing toilets and other issues. Contact a plumber today to learn more.

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