Your toilets typically represent the greatest source of water use per day in your home. In the average home, Toilet flushes account for up to 31% of water use. While newer toilets can use as little as one to two gallons per flush, older toilets may use three to seven gallons per flush. Despite the fact that toilets appear quite robust, clogged toilets are a common reason for plumbing repair calls. Understanding why toilets clog and what you can do to prevent or reduce the impact of toilet clogs on your plumbing is a smart step toward a more water-conscious and convenient Fort Myers home.
Toilet Drains and Clogs
Upon visual inspection, the drain in your toilet’s bowl can seem quite large. However, the average toilet drain is only three to four inches in diameter, while the average drainpipe that leads away from the fixture itself may be three inches or less in diameter. Thus, your toilet’s drain is not large enough to handle most types of flushed waste, which is the most common cause of toilet clogs. Attempting to flush garbage, cat litter, packaging, or food debris down your toilet will only increase the likelihood of a clog that causes an inconvenient backup and affects your ability to use your toilet until repairs are made. Even flushing hair, paper towels, or tissues down your toilet can set the stage for stubborn clogs that require professional assistance to eliminate.
Preventing Toilet Clogs
Because most toilet clogs in Fort Myers are caused by flushing improper items down the toilet, the simplest way to avoid them is to never use your toilet for anything but its intended purpose. Placing a trash can next to the toilet and keeping the lid closed when the fixture is not in use can also help to eliminate the source of toilet clogs. If you do suspect a change in your toilet’s function, give your plumber a call immediately, rather than waiting for the issue to resolve itself. Clogs will only continue to grow and worsen over time—the sooner you address a building clog, the less likely it is to cause a major plumbing backup.
Handling Toilet Clogs
If your toilet does develop a clog, you can attempt to loosen it yourself by using a plunger. However, if this solution doesn’t work, it’s best to call your plumber immediately for help. Your plumber has additional tools and techniques to remove a clog from your toilet’s drainpipes, including video camera inspection and snaking to break up or pull up the clog itself and clear the pipes. In some cases, apparent toilet clogs are actually a symptom of a clogged sewer line, which always requires a professional plumber to handle and can cause serious damage to your home or your yard if not addressed promptly. Thus, your plumber is your best resource to handle toilet clogs, even if you think the issue is a minor one.
An experienced plumber can help you with all of your home’s plumbing and drain cleaning needs, including handling toilet clogs in For Myers. We invite you to take a look through our website to find out more about our plumbing and HVAC services, as well as find helpful ARS®/Rescue Rooter® plumbing coupons to save money the next time you need plumbing help. You can also find more home plumbing and comfort advice when you read through our monthly blog.
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