A well-maintained and tidy bathroom can minimize your morning chaos, not to mention that it is indeed a pleasure to be in. While bigger plumbing jobs are best left to the hands of professionals to avoid costly disasters, minor repairs, such as slow toilet drainage or blockage, can be completed DIY style. Regular maintenance will keep your bathroom looking great, while keeping you away from serious water damage and costly repairs.
As for slow water drainage, this problem could be caused by a build-up of hair, grease or soap in the U bend, sometimes called the trap, under the toilet. This part of the toilet contains water to prevent sewer gas from entering your home. Aside from this, it is also designed to trap solid matter that can cause blockages.
If you think that your toilet drain is not totally blocked, you can try a homemade cleaner that contains a cup of white vinegar, half a cup of baking soda and about 4 liters of boiling water. Pour down your toilet and repeat the process multiple times if necessary. This should break down any build-up.
If this technique does not work, it means that you have a solid blockage that needs to be removed by dismantling the toilet U bend. Follow these steps to successfully complete such a repair work:
1. Dislodge Smaller Blockages By Plunging.
If there is water backing up into the basin, remove some to a level that is just enough to cover the plunger’s cup. Position the plunger over the drain and then vigorously pump in a straight up and down motion for at least 60 seconds to dislodge small blockages from the U bend.
2. Dismantle The U Bend.
If the previous step did not work, then position a container under the U bend, as you will have to dismantle it. Wrap the nuts on both its sides with masking tape and loosen them with a pair of multi-grips. After you remove the U bend, pour the excess water in it into a container.
3. Clean and Reassemble U Bend.
Using a coat hanger, remove the blockage from the U bend, scrape gunk from it and then clean it thoroughly with a bottlebrush and detergent. You should also smear its screw threads with petroleum jelly before replacing to make it easier for you to remove it next time.
4. Re-Install The U Bend.
Reattach the U bend the same way you removed it, and then test out your toilet. Try to see if there are leaks around the connections and that your toilet drains smoothly. If it is still problematic, then you might have a problem further down the line that requires a professional’s attention.
Tips on Getting a Plumbing Service
When you call in a plumber for help with your clogged toilet, make sure you have some information available to help him diagnose the problem quickly. You can mention how long you have been noticing the problem and what you did to fix it, noting any changes. Also, do not hesitate to ask him some relevant questions before he starts to work, like the cost and the length of time the process would take.