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What to Do If Your Toilet Overflows

toilet-with-button-flushThis is one of the most common plumbing problems we get emergency calls about. We understand—it’s alarming to have a toilet suddenly start spilling water onto a bathroom floor with no signs of stopping!

We have good news for you! An overflowing toilet doesn’t have to be a major disaster for your home. First of all, we can fix it—and we provide same-day service so you won’t have to go with an unusable bathroom for long. We know how important this room is to your household’s daily life, and we’ll be there fast to have the toilet fixed.

Second, if you take the right steps, you can prevent further problems from the overflowing toilet and stop water damage. Below are guidelines for what to do when you encounter this sudden plumbing trouble.

ONE: Shut off the water to the toilet

For most toilets, this is a simple task. The freshwater entering the tank of the toilet comes through a feedline from the wall. The feedline should have a valve on it. Turn this valve to shut off the water flow and the toilet will stop overflowing.

What if there is no valve on the feedline? This may be the case for a much older toilet. What you can do in this situation is to open the lid on the tank and pull up the chain with the ball float. Rig it up with something so it won’t go back down. This should stop the flow. (We’d recommend you look into getting a replacement toilet if your model is this old—it’s probably a major water waster.)

TWO: Remove any water that has spilled out

Any water that’s spilled out around the base of the toilet should be removed as soon as possible. Water that’s allowed to seep down into the floor will cause water damage, lead to mold and mildew, and may contain harmful bacteria. If you have a wet/dry vacuum, now’s the time to use it. Put down towels around the toilet base to soak up as much water as you can. (Afterwards, disinfect the surface and wash the towels in a separate load to remove any bacteria.)

THREE: Use a plunger to see if this fixes the trouble

You won’t know yet what has caused the overflow, but a clog is one of the most likely causes. Take a toilet plunger (which is shaped differently from a sink plunger with an extended flange on the end) and see if you can clear out any clogs. Don’t attempt to use any other type of “drain unclogger” other than the toilet plunger. (You can try a sink plunger, but if the toilet plunger doesn’t work, the sink plunger is almost certain not to work.)

FOUR: Call a professional plumber

If it doesn’t look like a simple clog is the problem, now is when you should call for a plumber in Lansdale, PA. Make sure you only call a licensed professional, like our plumbers. A pro plumber will see the problem is fixed quickly.

Call on Carney Plumbing Heating & Cooling for all your plumbing needs. Our staff is well-trained, trusted, and respectful.

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