Not Just Toilet Paper: What Could Be Causing That Tough Clog?


Most toilet clogs are caused by using too much toilet paper. When this is the case, you can typically plunge the toilet a bit, perhaps wait for a few minutes to allow the toilet paper to dissolve, and then flush and watch everything rinse down as if there was never a problem. But what if you keep plunging away and nothing budges? The problem here is probably not toilet paper or even human waste. Instead, you're probably dealing with one of these problematic items.

Tree Roots

The clog might not be in the pipe that immediately leads away from your toilet. Rather, it may be closer to the sewer or in the main sewer line that empties from your home into the public sewer pipe. Most clogs in this line are caused by tree roots. They grow into cracks in the pipe as the tree is desperate for water. Once the roots have poked inside, they get all the water and nutrients they need to keep growing. Before long, they fill the pipe, creating a solid obstruction that toilet water cannot pass. 

Plunging won't remove tree roots from a pipe, no matter how hard you try. To fix this problem, you need a professional with an auger to grind away the roots.

Collapsed Pipe

Another possibility is that one of the pipes in the pathway from the toilet to the sewer has collapsed. It may have caved in after soil put too much pressure on it, perhaps because it was old and partially rusted through. A collapsed pipe needs to be dug up and replaced. But first, your plumber will send a camera down into the system to figure out exactly where the collapsed section is located.


Do you have kids or a pet? There is a chance that they dropped a toy or some other foreign object into the toilet and that the object is now lodged inside the toilet's drain pipe. Dogs have been known to drop stuffed toys into the toilet, which can cause this effect. Toddlers like to toss anything they can find into the toilet bowl, especially after they have just learned to flush. Your plumber can use a tool called a snake to grab remove the offending item, but a plunger probably won't free it.

Tough clogs are usually caused by more than just toilet paper. If plunging does not yield results within a few minutes, you'll be better off turning to a plumber for assistance.

For more information, contact a plumber that offers clogged toilet repair services.


14 October 2019

A New Kind of Piping Makes DIY Plumbing Easier

My homes have always had either copper or PVC plumbing pipes. But when my plumbing system needed an overhaul last spring, I wanted a piping system for my home that I could work on myself when needed. There were a lot of good reasons to choose PEX piping, but my favorite thing about the PEX piping is that it's easy to work with, even if you're a beginner like me. Now I can make small repairs myself instead of calling the plumber every time I have a minor leak or other small problem. I still call the plumber for the big stuff, but it's more affordable now that I can take care of small issues myself. I started this blog to help others learn how they, too, can do DIY plumbing repairs at home.