Whether it is from a clog in the bowl or a tank malfunction, the damage from a backed-up toilet can be quite extensive and end up costing you a lot of dollars. Did you know that around 15% of all causes behind water home damage are due to a toilet overflow? Yes, it is more common than you would like to think and that is why you need to handle a toilet overflow efficiently and effectively to prevent extensive damage to your home.
The first thing you would want to do when dealing with a toilet overflow is to stop the water flow. Once you’ve managed to do that, you can go about removing and cleaning up the waste. It is also recommended by experts that you shouldn’t use any plumbing until the main cause of the backed-up toilet has been properly identified.
There are various steps that you can undertake to handle the water damage from a backed-up toilet. We will be sharing some very important tips with you so that you can accurately assess the source of the problem and deal with it in an effective manner. So, here’s how you can handle a toilet overflow in your own home.
Turn Off the Water Source
The main thing that requires your immediate attention is the flow of water in your bathroom. You need to be alert and stop the water flow from the mainline as soon as possible to prevent extensive water damage in your home. You will find the water valve beneath the water tank and turn the valve off so that the water flow is completely cut off.
Once the overflowing stops, you should wait to let the toilet bowl drain out thoroughly. If you find that the water continues to overflow even if you have tinkered with the valve, then the problem could be backed up from either the drainpipe or the main sewer line.
Use the Plunger to Deal with the Clog
In general, the toilet overflows and clogs mostly happen in the toilet bowl or the trap. One of the best things you can find when dealing with toilet clogs are plungers, which are absolute lifesavers. You should use the plunger in an up and down rhythm, which helps create pressure and forces the clog out of the blow into your drain pipes through the trap. If the water doesn’t stop overflowing, you shouldn’t be using the plunger as it will only end up making the complete process messier.
Don’t use a basic plunger as it doesn’t form a sufficient seal to produce the required pressure. You should be using a bell plunger, which creates a more reliable seal with the toilet drain. You can apply a layer of petroleum jelly to the plunger, which can work wonders for the seal. You should remember that a plunger can clear a clogged drainpipe or toilet bowl, but it can’t fix the other overflowing issues in your toilet.
Use a Drain Snake or Toilet Auger
If the plunger proves ineffective in dealing with the overflowing water problem, you should think about using a drain snake or a toilet auger. You should use both of them in close conjunction with one another to get the best results. Toilet augers are designed specifically to crawl through your drain pipes and snag the clog. It works with the shape of the toilet and the S-shaped trap.
When you are using the drain snake or the toilet auger, you must remember that in some cases, the auger may break the clog sufficient enough to flow away from the toilet and go towards the sewers.
Remove Standing Water and Waste
We advise you to always act fast when dealing with an overflowing toilet problem. That is because the longer the water ends up sitting on the bathroom floor, the more damage it is going to cause. The water can easily flood the entire bathroom, get inside the cabinets, and be absorbed into the walls, which will then allow bacteria to start growing in your bathroom.
You should be using a dry/wet vacuum in your bathroom to suck up all the standing water and the waste from the toilet. You can also try using towels and blankets to soak up the water and clean them afterward for a better result. If you’re unable to handle the toilet overflow on your own, then you should get in touch with water damage restoration experts, and seek their expert help.
Dry Out Affected Walls and Cabinets
Once you’ve removed all the waste and the water from your bathroom, you should start the drying process. This can be done by using high-powered fans and air movers to dry out the damaged material from the backed-up toilet. You can easily rent air movers from your nearby local shops. Regular fans aren’t going to do a good job of completely drying the water, and can even leave behind mold and bacteria, which is something that you don’t want to be dealing with.
Most people prefer going about it in their own manner, but it is still recommended to enlist a water damage restoration company’s services for the best results.
It’s important that you recognize the amount of damage present in your bathroom and your home from a toilet overflow. So, don’t try and go about fixing things on your own, as you may soon realize that the water clean up job is too big for you. If you delay contacting professionals when dealing with a toilet overflow in your home can end up costing you thousands of dollars.