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Unclog Your Toilets - How to Use a Toilet Snake

One of the more helpful and frequent remedies you can learn is to be able to effectively snake a toilet. Clogged toilets will happen. With children in the home it is inevitable. At times, you can unclog by using a plunger. But what if the plunger doesn't fix the problem? Then, you either call a plumber and pay his fee, or you begin snaking. To snake a toilet successfully, you will need to use certain tools, materials, and procedures.

Things You'll Need:

  • Rubber gloves
  • Container for water
  • Plumbers snake

Step 1 – Try to Determine the Cause of the Clog

After finding that the water in your toilet will not flow out of the toilet and into the drain, your first step should be to try plunging. If water is present in your toilet bowl, try plunging without flushing the toilet. Flushing could very well cause your toilet to overflow onto the bathroom floor. If plunging is successful and the water begins flowing you may have solved the problem. If the toilet bowl water continues to back up, try to determine what may be causing the clog. The most obvious and usually most successful way is to ask members of your family (especially children) if they attempted to flush things down the toilet, such as toys.


Step 2 – Choosing the Best Snake

If you need to obtain a snake, be sure you get one with a smaller turning head. Otherwise, you risk breaking a drain pipe. Begin with the small snake head. If you are unable to unclog your toilet and will need a larger one, take care in the way you use it. Don't push it or turn it too forcibly.

Step 3 – Starting Your Snake

To begin using your snake, unwind 3 or 4 feet from its winding spindle and place the snake head into the opening at the bottom of the toilet bowl. Water in the toilet bowl will help unclog by flushing away any pieces that are broken loose from the clog. If you don't see water in the toilet bowl, pour some into the bowl. Avoid flushing at this point. Now, begin turning the snake handle in a clockwise motion. At first, turn the handle slowly but firmly until you feel it begin to bind. As you turn it, the snake should find its way down the drain pipe without you forcing it.  

Step 4 – Breaking up a Clog

As the snake head makes it way down the clogged drain and comes in contact with the clog, you will feel resistance to turning the handle. When this happens, wind the snake back. This may bring debris up from the clog, allowing you to see what might be causing the clog, as well as telling you that the clog is beginning to break apart. Try working the snake head back down the drain to the clog again, turning the handle to break loose more of the clog. Again, wind the snake back from the clog. Continue using this procedure until the water in the toilet bowl drains freely.

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