6 Best Methods on How to Unclog a Toilet without a Plunger
by Eliot Keefe
There is no telling what is happening in the pipes just a few feet down the line from the toilet. It could literally be one flush away from getting clogged. But what do you do when you do not have a plunger to unclog the mess? You may be thinking you are straight out of luck, but there is some good news. When it comes to unclogging your toilet without a plunger, there are some simple at home remedies to try out. The even better news is that you likely have all the tools you need right in your own home.
In today’s article, we are going to give you some insight into some of the best ways to unclog your toilet if you find your self in a pickle. Consider these 6 methods on how to unclog a toilet without a plunger. We should say that you might want to get some gloves on hand because things are going to get a little dirty.
1. The Shop-Vac Method
There is a very easy way how to unclog a toilet using a Shop-Vac. The first thing that you want to do is to get the water level down before attempting to break up the clog. Get the hose into the toilet and vacuum up as much as you can until the bowl is empty.
Once the bowl has no more liquid in it, what you will need next is an old towel or several small rags. Insert the tip of the vacuum hose into the drain and then surround the hose with a wet towel or rags to create a tight seal. Now turn on the Shop-Vac and the suction should be able to remove the clog from the drain.
2. Dishwashing Liquid Flush
Want to learn how to unclog a toilet without any tools at all? All you need is your favorite dishwashing product and a pot. Start by squirting a few drops of the dishwashing liquid directly into the toilet bowl. Now bring a large pot of water to a boil before bringing that into the bathroom.
Slowly pour the hot water into the toilet so it mixes with the dishwashing liquid and begins to break up the clog. Allow the hot water to sit in the bowl for about five minutes, then flush the toilet and the clog should break loose. If things get better but the flushing is still sluggish, simply repeat the process and the rest of that clog should pass down the drain. When you are pouring in the hot water, just be sure that you are not pouring in too much. If you do, then you may run the risk of exasperating the issue by making your toilet overflow.
3. Vinegar & Baking Soda Method
Another very effective way of how to unclog a toilet without any tools is making a baking soda and vinegar mixture to attack and dissolve the clog. This potion will allow water to pass. To start, you will need one cup of vinegar and one cup of baking soda. Place a large kettle on the stove with water and bring to a boil.
While the water is on the stove, pour the cup of baking soda and the cup of vinegar into the toilet. Once the water has come to a boil, slowly pour it into the toilet and allow to sit for approximately five minutes. After five minutes have passed, flush the toilet and the clog should allow water to pass. If the clog is not completely gone, you can repeat these steps until the toilet is again flushing without trouble.
4. Wire Coat Hanger
I hate to suggest it because it can be pretty disgusting but every household should have a wire coat hanger in one of the closets. We will discuss how to unclog a toilet simply using this wire coat hanger and a rag. The first thing you will need to do is to unravel the metal hanger, so it is one straight piece of wire. Now take one end and bend a small hook. Make sure it’s small enough to fit inside the trap way. Now you insert the hook end into the trap and begin moving around to break up the blockage. This is certainly one of the crudest methods but it does work. I must admit I’ve done it more than a few times mostly in college when there wasn’t a plunger to be had.
5. Toilet Brush to the Rescue
When there is no plunger, you can use other toilet parts. If you want to learn how to unclog a toilet quickly, grab that toilet brush sitting on the floor next to the tank. What you are going to do is basically use the toilet brush in the same manner as you would the plunger. Insert the brush as far down into the drain as possible, then follow with several forceful pumps to break the clog free.
If the bowl is full of liquid, yes this is going to be gross. The brown water can splash all over the floor, and someone needs to clean that up. Insert the brush into the drain, push, pull, repeat. Once you see the water recede, you know you hit the clog, and things are improving.
Please note, the bristle end of the toilet brush isn’t meant to unclog a toilet. If you are too forceful you could end up breaking the toilet brush and getting the brush stuck in the trap way creating a much bigger issue. Be careful.
6. Renting the Power Snake
As a last resort, rent a power snake from one of the local home shopping centers or hardware stores. The power snake can reach deeper down the line where a potential clog could be causing the trouble. Remember that this is a powerful tool that could easily break the clog and allow water to flow freely again. However, if you are not careful, you might do damage to the plumbing system and turn a bad situation into much worse.
The power snake needs to be operated with care because you could break a fragile piece of pipe or push the clog further down the line where it becomes lodged in a tighter area and stops the flow of water. Use the power snake only if you can access the clog that’s a few feet from the drain opening. If the clog is further down the line, a professional plumbing company should be called.
Most of these methods on how to unclog a toilet are going to break free that clog and get the water flowing again unless the trouble is further down the line and requires a professional plumbing company to clear the lines. If you gained your own experience with unclogging your toilet, feel free to describe your method so other readers can give them a try too.