How to Fix an Overflowing Toilet

Toilet overflows are a common plumbing problem that homeowners inevitably experience, but not a lot of people understand how hazardous an overflowing toilet can get. Aside from wasting gallons of water and causing a lot of stress, an overflowing toilet can also contain contaminated water and affect other parts of your home. Want to know how to fix an overflowing toilet? Read on!

What causes your toilet to overflow?

Toilets overflow due to a number of reasons, including sewage issues, blocked vents, clogged pipes, or a full septic tank. A faulty tank float mechanism or a stuck handle may also cause toilets to overflow.


As soon as you notice the toilet overflowing, it’s smart to get it fixed immediately. Otherwise, it can cause major damage, depending on the location of the bathroom and your home’s layout. These damages often come with hefty repair costs.

How to fix an overflowing toilet

It can get frustrating to see the water levels rising instead of going down after you’ve flushed the toilet.


Before anything else, it’s important to turn off the water supply to the toilet using the valve under it. If you can’t locate the valve, take the top of the tank off, then lift the float ball high enough. This should stop the water from running.


Once the water supply is turned off, you may proceed:

1. If the overflow continues even if the water supply is turned off, this means you’re dealing with a sewage issue. You’ll have to call a plumber.


2. Use a plunger. But first things first: put on rubber gloves then remove the excess water from the toilet bowl. This avoids spilling more water onto the floor as you plunge.
Put the plunger into the toilet, with the flange directly inserted into the drain hole. For 15- 20 seconds, push the plunger up and down while keeping the handle upright. This should clear the clog.


3. If the plunger didn’t fix the issue, use a toilet snake. Start by placing the hook end of the snake into the bowl, turn the crank clockwise to extend the cable into the drain, until it can’t go any further. This means you’ve come to whatever’s clogging the toilet.


Hook the clog and gently pull back. Crank counter-clockwise to pull the clogged material out of the drain. Repeat the process as needed.

4. Test the toilet to make sure it’s working properly again.

What to do after fixing the toilet

Once the toilet is fixed, use bleach and hot water to disinfect the surfaces that came into contact with the contaminated toilet water. If you picked up any debris, disposed of it properly. You’d also want to dry the floors right away.

Still can’t fix your overflowing toilet?

An overflowing toilet induces panic like no other. But we’re here to fix any plumbing problem, big or small, including an overflowing toilet, so you can have peace of mind once again.


A toilet overflow can cause devastating damage to your home if left ignored. So if your toilet keeps overflowing, give us a call. Our local plumbers are certified, experienced, and knowledgable in tackling a wide range of plumbing problems.


CONTACT US to schedule an appointment through our app or online.

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