Blocked Toilet? Simple Guide For How To Unblock A Toilet

Author: Stuart Hunt - Published: 14.09.20
How To Unblock A Toilet

If you find the water in your toilet does not drain away, then you have a blocked toilet this how to unblock a toilet guide will help you to clear away any blocked toilet, simply and without getting messy.

The best way to unblock a toilet is to use a drain rod with a plunger end; this is because a standard plunger is for a sink and therefore doesn't fit inside the toilet bowel correctly whereas a drain rod will.

The process for how to unblock a toilet is simple, and if you follow these steps, you will have your bathroom toilet back up and running soon.

  1. Make sure the water is to the top of the bowl
  2. Push a drain rod with a plunger end into the toilet bowl
  3. Use small up and down motions at the bottom of the toilet bowl
  4. Pull the drain rod out, and the toilet should drain

Will A Toilet Eventually Unblock Itself?

A blocked toilet will typically unblock itself over time if the blockage is just a build-up of toilet tissue; however, if the toilet has been blocked with wet wipes, then the toilet will not unblock itself over time.

How Much Does It Cost To Unblock A Toilet

If you were to call a professional plumber to unblock your toilet, it would cost between £90 and £150 with the most expensive areas being London.

If the blockage is more than just a simple toilet blockage them, the price will increase as more specialised equipment will be used, such as a drainage jetter or even CCTV.

How To Unblock A Toilet Without A Plunger

The reason why we use a drain rod with a plunger end is that it creates an air seal around the bowl of a toilet and with the small motions up and down you make a downforce of air and water which pushes the blockage away.

  1. The mop method - If you don't have a drain rod then, you can improvise by using a mop in the same way as a drainage rod pushing up and down to make a downforce of air and water to clear the blockage.

2. The hot water method –there a  3 step to do this and it can work however it can be a bit messy

Step 1 – Wearing long gloves and a sponge you will need to remove as much water out of the toilet bowl as you can


Step 2 – Pour about half a pint glass of washing up liquid into the toilet bowl to help lubricate the waste pipe


Step 3 – Pour 3 or 4 litres of hot water into the toilet bowl one straight after the other Please don't use boiling water as this could damage the toilet pan


How Do I Know If My Toilet Is Blocked?

There are a couple of different signs that you have a blocked toilet. These signs can tell you how blocked the toilet is and also give you an indication of where the toilet is blocked.

  1. Water doesn't drain from your toilet at all – You might want to make sure other appliances such as your basin/ bath or shower is draining as it usually would.

If everything else is draining as is should then you can plunge your toilet, and it should clear the blockage.

2. After flushing the toilet, the bowl empties, so a little amount of water is left in the bowl – This will be an air circulation problem, there; therefore the blockage is most likely to be in a manhole as the water is being sucked away from the toilet.

Let us get started on clearing that blocked toilet

What you will need to unblock a toilet

  • Rubber Gloves
  • Drainage Rod with plunger end
  • Old Towel
  • A Bucket
  • Drain Worm
  • Washing-up Liquid

Make Sure The Water Is To The Top Of The Bowl

First, you need to flush the toilet a bit to make sure the water is too the top of the toilet bowl, this is, so you have the full weight of water when you start to move the blockage.

If your toilet water level is high, then don't flush the toilet and be sure not to flush the toilet by accident if you feel more comfortable then isolated the water supply to the toilet before starting the work

If you have isolated the water to the toilet, you will need to make sure you have access to a water source as you will need to flush the toilet a couple of toilet through unblocking the toilet.

Once you start to move the blockage, you will need to flush the toilet with clean water to make sure the blockage is going.

Push A Drain Rod With A Plunger End Into The Toilet Bowl

We use a drain rod for two reasons the first reason is, so you get a tight seal around the bottom of the toilet bowl

The second reason is so your face is not so close to the toilet.

Use Small Up And Down Motions At The Bottom Of The Toilet Bowl

Using the drain rod at the bottom of the toilet bowl start pushing and pulling the drain rod making sure you don't lift too high so that you lose the seal

Once you start to see the water drain a bit quickly pull the drain rod out of the toilet bowl, this should then allow the toilet to drain.

If the toilet does not drain repeat the process, if you have tried to unblock the toilet a couple of times.

If the blocked toilet persists, then you can use a drain snake also known as a drain worm or a drain auger

Using the worm place, the worm looking end onto the toilet a start twisting once you have gone all the way into the toilet slowly start pulling back if the toilet starts to drain repeat again.

If the toilet is still not draining, then you would need to start looking for a manhole in your garden as the blockage could be too far away from the toilet to plunge or the blockage is not just tissues paper.

Why do Toilet Get Blocked?

There are many different factors for why a toilet gets blocked, but the main cause is usually one the following

  • Toilet Paper
  • Build-up of Limescale
  • Wet wipes
  • Children's Toy
  • Fragrance cage on the side of the toilet bowl

If you know the cause of the blockage, then it can make it easier to clear

 How Do You Prevent Toilet Blockages?

You can help prevent toilet blockage however you can not guarantee you will never get a blockage, the best way to help prevent blockage is to close the toilet lid so that small object can not fall into the toilet and then get flushed unknowingly also by:

  • Cleaning inside the toilet bowl regularly to make sure the toilet is flushing fully
  • Never flush wet wipes or sanitary towel
  • Never put decorating, tilling or plaster waste into the toilet

When To Call A Plumber


If you have tried all of the techniques in this guide and your toilet is still blocked, then it's time to contact a local plumber or professional drainage company as they will most likely require more extensive equipment such a drainage jetting machine and even CCTV

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