How to Fix a Toilet That Won’t Flush

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How to Fix a Toilet That Won’t Flush

Everyone’s been there: desperately trying to flush a toilet that won’t cooperate, no matter how many times you plunge it. At its best, a non-flushing toilet is an embarrassment, especially if you have roommates or guests in the house. At its worst, a non-flushing toilet leaves you without a functional bathroom and constant threats of a floor-damaging, bacteria-laden overflow. If your toilet is having trouble flushing or has stopped flushing completely, you need to get it fixed now, as these problems tend to get worse with time. Although you may be able to fix it yourself, you should contact a plumber from a trusted Desoto plumbing company to make sure there aren’t any larger issues at play. 

If your toilet won’t flush, don’t panic — we’ve got you covered. An experienced Desoto plumber at Dial One Johnson Plumbing, Cooling & Heating can assess the situation and have your toilet flushing again in no time. Call us today at 469-240-5618. 

Why Won’t My Toilet Flush? 

Good plumbing starts with investigative work. Before attempting to fix your toilet, you need to figure out why it won’t flush. Although many different issues could be preventing your toilet from flushing, there are a few easy things you can try to get your toilet operational again. Fair warning, though — there are risks to DIY plumbing. If you’re not sure what you’re doing, you could exacerbate existing problems. When in doubt, it’s best to call a Desoto bathroom plumbing expert

Try Adjusting Your Tank’s Water Levels

If there isn’t enough water in the toilet tank, the toilet bowl won’t have enough water to flush. 

Checking this is pretty easy: just lift the lid off of the tank and see where the water level sits. It should be about one inch below the top of the overflow tube. If the water is significantly lower than that, you can try twisting the flush valve. 

If that doesn’t work, check the float ball (also called a filler float). If the float ball sinks too low, it can signal that the tank is full when it really isn’t. If you’re familiar with toilet tanks, you can attempt to adjust it yourself. If not, call an expert. 

Try Unclogging Your Toilet

If the water level looks good in your tank, there might be something else wrong with the flushing mechanism, such as a broken handle or a broken valve. Once you’ve explored those options, it’s time to face facts: you’re probably dealing with a clog. When you try to flush a clogged toilet, one of the following things generally happens:

  • The toilet bowl drains very slowly. 
  • After draining, the water level drops lower than usual in the toilet bowl. 
  • The water level rises too high in the bowl or even overflows.  
  • Other fixtures in your bathroom or home make a gurgling noise.
  • You notice a foul smell. 

If it’s a superficial clog, plunging may clear it, allowing water to flow smoothly again. Applying a combination of baking soda and vinegar followed by hot water may loosen the clog as well. If you’re familiar with using a drain snake and have one on hand, you can even use that. However, if those methods don’t clear the clog, you shouldn’t prod or flush excessively. Call a Dial One bathroom plumbing expert to remove the clog with a professional-grade drain snake.  

Consider a Clogged Drain Line

If you weren’t able to remove the clog, you may be dealing with a clogged drain line, which is a larger issue. Drain lines move sewage from your toilet to the sewer system or septic tank. Because these lines run underground, pinpointing the issue can be a difficult task. Your drain line could be backed up with a hard-to-remove clog, obstructed by tree roots or even broken. 

If you suspect you have a clogged drain line, it’s important to call a plumber right away because this isn’t an issue you can fix on your own. Neglecting to do so could create some pretty nasty situations, including a sewage backup in your yard. Contact a Desoto plumbing company to do a camera pipe and drain inspection to see if they can locate the problem. 

What Caused My Clogged Toilet?

Many things can cause a clogged toilet or clogged drain, but the cause is most likely an accumulation of things you shouldn’t be flushing. Remember, just because your toilet can flush something doesn’t mean it should. It’s a good rule of thumb to only flush waste and moderate amounts of toilet paper. Flushing other products, even products marketed as “flushable,” is putting unnecessary stress on your plumbing system. Never flush the following items: 

  • Baby wipes
  • “Flushable” wipes
  • Paper towels
  • Tissues
  • Cotton balls
  • Feminine hygiene products
  • Hair 
  • Grease
  • Food
  • Excessive amounts of bleach
  • Excessive amounts of toilet paper

Although many clogs are caused by a build-up of these items, some are caused by other issues, such as hard water. If your home’s water has a high mineral content, the minerals can calcify into a hard, white substance that blocks drains and is difficult to remove. One solution to this is buying a water softener to remove minerals. Your clogged toilet could also be caused by cracked, broken or crushed pipes caused by corrosion, heavy rain or old age. If this is the case, your Desoto plumber may need to replace pipes and sewer lines. 

Call a Plumber in Desoto, TX

If you can’t fix your toilet on your own or don’t feel comfortable tinkering around, it’s time to turn to a trusted plumber at Dial One Johnson Plumbing, Cooling and Heating. At Dial One, we pride ourselves in offering the best plumbing and HVAC services available in the Greater Dallas and Desoto areas. Not only do we offer 24-hour emergency plumbing services, but we also offer multiple financing options because we never want money to be a barrier to getting the services you deserve. If you’d like to submit a service request, visit us online, or give us a call at 469-240-5618


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