What to Do if Your Toilet is Overflowing

Jul18 By Emergency Plumber Plumbing
Toilet running

Everyone has dealt with a clogged toilet before, but an overflowing toilet is entirely different. After all, few things are more panic-inducing than watching the water level rise inside the toilet bowl. Here’s what to do if you find yourself in this situation.

If Your Toilet Start Overflowing…

  • Don’t flush again. An overflowed toilet results from something blocking the drain. Since the water can’t get past the blockage, the last thing you should do is flush the toilet again. Doing so will only leave you with more water to contend with.
  • Shut off the water. Check behind your toilet. You should see a shut-off valve where the hose connects the toilet tank to the wall. Turn this valve clockwise as far as it will go to prevent any more water from flowing into the toilet.
  • Push the flapper closed. If your toilet doesn’t have a shut-off valve or it refuses to budge, you have two backup options. First, remove the toilet tank lid and look inside for the flapper, a hinged rubber flap at the bottom of the tank. Reach inside and manually push the flapper closed to stop the water flow.
  • Rig the float so it doesn’t move. If the flapper won’t stay closed, locate the float within the toilet tank. Lift up on the float, and the water should stop flowing. Lowering the float will make the water come back on, so you need to prop up, tie, or otherwise rig the float to hold it in place.

Once Things are Under Control…

  • Wait until the water level falls. Take a deep breath and step away from the toilet. While you regain your composure, the water level should come down as water trickles past the blockage in the drain. If the level doesn’t fall after several minutes, scoop some of the water into a bucket to lower it manually.
  • Plunge the toilet. Insert a flange plunger into the toilet bowl and create a seal around the drain opening. Then, thrust the plunger up and down several times for 10 to 20 seconds. The water should flow quickly down the drain once the clog is clear. Turn the shut-off valve counter-clockwise or remove the rigging from the toilet float and give it a flush.
  • Call an emergency plumber. If you can’t clear the clog, it’s time to call for backup. Puget Sound Plumbing and Heating is a trusted emergency plumber with over 20 years of experience serving residents in the Seattle area. We have the skills and know-how to identify your toilet problem and get it working like normal again. We can clear clogs, remove foreign objects from the drain, fix float mechanisms, and anything else that might be wrong with your toilet. If you decide it’s time for a new one, we can install a water-saving toilet to meet your needs.

Call Puget Sound Plumbing and Heating today at (206) 938-3219 or contact us online to request toilet repair in Seattle, WA.

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