Caustic soda is one of the most effective drain cleaners available. It helps clean blocks, pipes, and drains in your home. In addition, plumbers often use it to clear stubborn clogs as it is both effective and affordable.
Caustic soda has a high pH level making it perfect for unblocking toilets. However, caustic soda is highly reactive and dangerous if not handled correctly.
Before you use caustic soda to unblock your toilet, you should check out our tips on how to unblock your toilet.
- Caustic Soda is a Strong Alkali
- Identify the Blocked Area
- Tips Before You Start Working With Caustic Soda
- Prepare the Tools and Materials that You will Need
- Preparation of Caustic soda Solution
- Pour Caustic Soda Down the Toilet Bowl
- Washing up
- Caustic Soda Splashes on Your Skin?
- Final Words
Caustic Soda is a Strong Alkali
Caustic soda or sodium hydroxide (NaOH) is an alkali found in many products, including detergents and drain cleaners. It’s known for its powerful properties and ability to dissolve fat and grease deposits. It’s also used to manufacture paper, soap, and textiles in industrial processes.
Caustic soda can cause burns if it comes in contact with your skin or eyes. To keep yourself safe, follow these tips before you start working with this chemical-
Identify the Blocked Area
The first step is to identify the blocked area. Once you do that, you can take the required measures.
Before using caustic soda to unclog your drains, ensure the problem isn’t caused by a physical blockage, like tree roots or a broken pipe. If it is, and you pour caustic soda down your drains anyway, you may end up with a bigger mess than before!
Tips Before You Start Working With Caustic Soda
Caustic soda is not your typical household chemical; you should be cautious when handling it. It can cause severe burns and permanent damage to the eyes. The smoke it produces is also dangerous and irritating. The following tips will help you work safely with caustic soda-
1. Wear protective gear
This protects your skin from contact with caustic soda, which can cause serious burns. A face shield will also be helpful since it protects your eyes from the effects of splashes of caustic soda, which can cause permanent damage to your eyes or blindness. An apron will also be helpful since it protects the rest of your body from any splashes.
2. Ventilate the working area
Make sure you have a well-ventilated area when working with caustic soda. The fumes that come from this chemical irritate the eyes and respiratory system. Work outdoors or in a place with plenty of air circulation if possible. If you have no choice but to work indoors, wear a good respirator mask that filters out harmful gases and fumes.
3. Keep Children or Pets away
If you have children or pets in your home, keep them away from the treated area until you have flushed the toilet several times.
4. Be careful disposing of waste products or solutions
Caution should also be taken when disposing of caustic soda waste products or solutions. Don’t pour this down your drain; it can ruin your drain pipes.
It would be best to have potassium carbonate or bicarbonate available for neutralizing.
Prepare the Tools and Materials that You will Need
To work with caustic soda safely and effectively, you must be prepared and understand the process.
Before working with caustic soda, prepare the necessary tools and materials.
Like safety glasses, protective gloves, a container for mixing, newspaper or plastic sheeting for containing spills and splashes, a paper towel for wiping up spills, a dustpan and broom (or shop vac) for cleaning up spills, an outdoor space to work in and a strong container (such as a glass jar) with a lid to store the solution.
Preparation of Caustic soda Solution
Step 1. Put on protective gear:
Caustic soda is highly corrosive and can cause severe burns to the skin. Therefore, you must wear rubber gloves and safety goggles before using caustic soda to unclog your toilet.
Step 2. Here is How to make a caustic soda solution
If you want to make your caustic soda solution home, you can easily do it with simple ingredients. All you need is caustic soda and water to make your solution. If you use caustic soda, take all necessary precautions, such as wearing a mask and protective clothing.
1. Pour 1.5 gallons of cool water into the bucket
2. Slowly add one kilogram of caustic soda to the water.
3. Stir the mixture using a wooden spoon or a stick until all the caustic soda is dissolved.
4. The mixture will start bubbling slightly as the caustic soda mixes with the water.
5. It will create fumes, so you mustn’t inhale any fumes that started from this chemical reaction, as they can harm your health.
So, if possible, you should do this outdoors or at least keep windows open if mixing inside.
Pour Caustic Soda Down the Toilet Bowl
Pour around 1 liter of caustic soda solution down the toilet bowl, followed by a kettle full of boiling water. Put the toilet cover close and leave it to work for about an hour.
The caustic soda will react together and create a chemical reaction to help clear the blockage in your U-bend or soil stack.
You’ll notice that the water in the bowl begins to change color as the chemical reaction occurs. This is because the caustic soda reacts with the waste in the toilet to break it down and dissolve the clog.
Repeat this process if you have a severe blockage or multiple clogs until the blockage has been cleared. This may take a few applications to work through stubborn deposits.
Once you are satisfied that the blockage has been removed, flush the toilet several times to ensure all traces of caustic soda have been rinsed.
If none of the waste has dissolved after several rounds of pouring in caustic soda and leaving it for one hour, the blockage may be much further down the pipe then you think. It will be better to call a professional plumber to diagnose and remove the problem.
After unclogging your toilet, wipe down the bowl and flush it. After that, clean any leaks or spills in the bathroom. And if you want your bathroom to smell better, use some household cleaning products and ensure any spills are wiped up.
Caustic Soda Splashes on Your Skin?
- If you accidentally get caustic soda on your skin, immediately wash the affected area with water for at least 20 minutes.
- The best strategy is to run the skin under a cool tap immediately. Showering works too, but it also gets everything else wet.
- If you think the chemical may have splashed into your eyes, flush them out with water and ensure they are completely clean.
- See a doctor immediately if you are experiencing any burning sensation, swelling, redness, or other unusual symptoms.
- Be careful not to touch any areas that caustic soda may have splattered onto until you’ve finished washing it off and your skin is back to normal – you won’t want to cause additional damage by rubbing it around with your hands.
- You should also wear gloves when handling lye or caustic soda in the future to prevent a repeat occurrence of the same problem.
Caustic soda can help you unblock your toilet, but you must take precautions. Wear gloves and eye protection, and dilute the product according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Caustic soda can burn skin and eyes, so handle the chemical carefully!