Have you ever had one of those days when you came home and discovered your kid had flushed something down the toilet, or your pet had tossed a toy in there that was just too soft to stand up to their teeth and gums?
Maybe you did it yourself when you were trying to cram one more small item into the already full trash can. Whatever the source, if you have found yourself with an object in the toilet that is not coming out, don’t panic! There are a few different ways you can try to retrieve it so that you do not have to call a plumber.
- Find Out if the Object will Flush Down on its Own
- How Can You Get an Object Out of the Toilet?
- Avoid Foreign Objects in the Toilet Using These Tips
- Final Thought
Find Out if the Object will Flush Down on its Own
If you have an object that you suspect is stuck in your toilet; and you are not sure if it will flush down by itself, there are a few things you can do to try to clear it. For example,
A plunger may help you push some kinds of soft, compressible objects through the toilet’s drain. Of course, this method works best on small objects. Another option is to pour some liquid soap or detergent down the drain. If the object is made of a material that will dissolve in water or detergent, it may fall through on its own.
However, if the material does not dissolve in water and floats instead, adding liquid soap will only help get the floating object wet enough to sink to the bottom of the toilet bowl. This can be helpful when the object is just barely out of reach but not blocking anything. If neither of these methods works, you may need to call a professional plumber.
How Can You Get an Object Out of the Toilet?
These things can be a real nuisance, but luckily, you can get them out of your toilet and keep everything up and running. Here is how!
Flush it Out
If the object is small enough to flush down the toilet, give it a try. It may not come back up, depending on what it is.
Grab Object and Pullout
A quick and easy way to retrieve an object that has just been flushed down the toilet is to reach your hand in there and grab and pull the object out. This approach works best if the object is visible. If it is covered with water and you cannot see it clearly, proceed as follows.
Step-1: Begin by shutting off the water supply to prevent any additional water from entering the bowl.
Step-2: In order to reduce the water level in the toilet bowl, disposable containers or dusters can be used to remove excess water from a toilet bowl until the water level has been substantially reduced.
Step-3: Now check the trap opening. If you spot the foreign object, remove it with your fingers. This may be the simplest solution to your problem.
Step-4: To remove an object from the trap, reach into the trap with your hand, and feel around for it. Then, grasp it firmly and remove it from the trap if you feel something.
Use a Coat Hanger or Wire to Remove
If an object is lodged in the toilet trap and your hands don’t reach it, use a wire or coat hanger to hook it, bend and form a coat hanger or wire into a hook, and gently insert the wire into the drain of the toilet. Catch the object with the hook, and then pull it out.
Use a Plunger
Using a plunger is one of the most common methods for removing foreign objects from toilets. Plunging works by creating a suction force that will pull the foreign object out of the toilet and up through the pipe.
It is an easy and inexpensive method, but it can be time-consuming. The plunger needs to be submerged in water to create a seal before plunging can begin. It also requires some elbow grease and strength to push down repeatedly on the plunger head for several minutes or more.
There is a possibility that this method of removing the object from the pipe might not work. It is also possible that even after you successfully remove the object from the pipe, it could become lodged further in and require professional help to remove it.
Put a Strainer in the Toilet and Push the Foreign Object Through
Here is what you can do-
Put a strainer (the kind with the diagonal legs) over the drain hole of your toilet. Make sure the rim of the strainer is against the inside of the bowl — not hanging off the backside. The idea is that whatever is stuck will go through the strainer.
Now, push down on one side of the strainer with your foot or hand and flush your toilet as quickly as possible.
As soon as you release your weight from pushing on one side of the strainer, give a little jump up on that side so that you can push down with your weight again while pushing up with your foot.
Try a Plumber’s Snake
If the plunger does not work, you can use a toilet snake or auger. It is a plumbing tool that is used to clear blockages in the drain of a toilet. It is a long, flexible wire with a handle on one end and a hook on the other end. The snake enters the toilet drain through the trap way; to remove clogs from the mainline or from the toilet bowl itself.
It can be used for many other things as well, but it is best used for toilets because of its unique design. A snake can be used to move heavy objects in tight spaces as well.
If you have a smaller object stuck in the trap way, you may be able to use a pair of needle-nose pliers to pull it out by hand. For larger objects, you will need to use a plumber’s snake. This tool has a hook at its end that allows you to pull up on foreign objects stuck in your toilet.
To use it, simply put on some gloves and slide the plastic piece of the snake down the spring. After this is done, position the snake into your toilet bowl and turn the snake handle clockwise as you slowly begin to press down. When you feel something blocking your toilet, turn the snake handle counter-clockwise as you slowly pull up. Once again, be careful not to push the object further down into your toilet.
Try a De-Clogger
If a toy has become stuck in the toilet, the easiest thing to try is a de-clogger. The most common de-cloggers are liquid drain cleaners, available at grocery stores.
You may want to try a natural de-clogger instead of a chemical one if you have concerns about the impact of chemicals on your health or the environment.
Choose one that does not contain sodium hydroxide or sulfamic acid. It would be better for you and less likely to damage your plumbing.
The Final Solution to this Issue, Remove the Toilet
Removing a toilet is a much larger job; than it might seem and will take at least two people. It is not hard, but many parts of the process could use your attention, so you need to be sure that you are completely focused on, what you are doing.
Your first step should be to remove the water supply to your toilet. To do this, turn off the main valve behind the toilet, flush it to drain the tank, and then turn off the smaller valve on the wall. At this point, you are ready to begin removing the toilet itself.
The important thing while removing a toilet is to unplug any attached wires or cables. That may cause an electrical shock if handled improperly. If this is not done carefully serious injury, or even death can result. Once you have unplugged all of these cords and removed them from their attachments, you can begin to remove bolts from your toilet’s base. Have someone help you lift on the toilet bowl; while another person unscrews the bolts from underneath it.
Once these bolts have been removed, lift on the bowl and remove it from the ground by pulling it away from its mounting ring (the hole in which it fits). This will allow you to gain access to the bottom of the toilet bowl and clear it out completely. If all else fails, you can use a snake to remove any foreign objects that may be stuck in the bowl. Once you have finished cleaning, replace your wax ring and put your toilet back in place.
Avoid Foreign Objects in the Toilet Using These Tips
Fancy things are not the only things that can clog a toilet. Things you use every day and think of as harmless may cause a clog too. For example, do not flush things like hairpins, cotton pads, condoms, and dental floss. These are good in their proper places, but they do not belong in a toilet.
Toys, tools, and even food like hard candy are some of the items that end up in toilets. When these items are flushed, they do not dissolve; and get stuck in plumbing pipes.
There are four steps you can take to avoid clogging your toilet because of foreign objects or toys:
Step-1: Always keep the toilet seat cover and use it every time you use the toilet. The seat cover should be used for everyone in the family, especially when children are around. If you do not want to use a seat cover, you can spray water around your bowl after every use to rinse it off and prevent any foreign object from sticking on it.
Step-2: Never throw anything into your toilet that is solid waste. Instead, place all solid waste in a trash can or garbage disposal. If you flush any other items, including sanitary towels, into the toilet, do not be surprised if they get stuck in the trap.
Limit the number of other waste products going down your toilet to toilet paper only.
Step-3: When you have children, it is often a good idea to teach them basic hygiene, including the proper use of toilets and toilet paper. And how to properly dispose of their toys into proper garbage bins instead of flushing them down the toilet.
Step-4: Before you flush, check the bowl for anything that may be blocking or caught in the pipes.
It would help if you kept in mind that there’s nothing to worry about when it comes to getting a foreign object stuck in your toilet. With the methods I have discussed above, you’ll be able to remove anything that ended up blocking your toilet.