If you encounter a tough clogged toilet that will not clear even after a plunger is used, then you will need to use a toilet snake. A toilet snake is metal coil that gets fed down the drain inside the toilet and will clear obstructions by breaking up the material. A toilet snake is typically used by a professional plumber, but you can save yourself a few dollars by doing it yourself. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to use a toilet snake to clear your clogged toilet.
1 - Start by finding a toilet snake that is long enough to fit down the pipe of your toilet. You will want to find a snake that is long enough to reach the obstruction, so check with your local hardware store to find the size that corresponds to your toilet. For obstructions that go throughout the house to the drain outside the house you may require an industrial electrical snake or auger, which will allow you to reach areas that a simple over the counter snake cannot reach on its own.
2 - Put on a pair of rubber gloves and wear them throughout this process to avoid having toilet water come into contact with your skin. With the gloves on, pull back the rubber or plastic casing on the snake to expose the coil on the end of the snake. The rubber or plastic casing protects the toilet from being scratched by the metal.
3 - Insert the coil tip into the drain hole in the base of the toilet. Then begin slowly pushing the handle on the opposite end of the snake down, while turning the handle around in a clockwise direction. This will feed the snake through the pipes while the coil moves around like a blade to break up the clog.
4 - Turn the handle of the snake in a counter-clockwise motion while slowly pulling the coil back to the original position. This will pull the snake back through the pipes in a reverse direction to break up any clogs that it may have missed on its initial run through the pipes.
5 - Repeat steps three and four until the clog has been fully cleared. You should begin to see a discoloration of the water when the clog has been broken up, as the shards of the clog are dispersed throughout the water.
6 - Pull the toilet snake completely out of the toilet and rest it in a drag to avoid getting contaminated toilet water on anything else inside the bathroom.
7 - Attempt to flush the toilet to see if the obstruction has been fully removed. If the toilet flushes completely then the blockage was successfully broken up by the snake.
If your toilet fails to successfully flush it could be a sign that you have a much larger plumbing issue that needs to be addressed by a professional plumber. A professional plumber like A Absolute Plumbing & Heating can shut off the main water supply to the toilet and take apart the pipes to remove hard to remove obstructions that cannot be removed by a toilet snake.