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The Home Depot

How to Prevent an Overflowing Toilet

Pro Referral > Home Guides > Plumbing > How to Prevent an Overflowing Toilet
How to Prevent an Overflowing Toilet

There is perhaps nothing a homeowner dreads more than an overflowing toilet. Many toilets are designed to hold all the water in the tank without flooding over. However, this is not the case with all toilets. So, if you are one of those unfortunate enough to have a clogged toilet, then dealing with it immediately is the only option left. But prevention is always better than cure and the same rule applies to toilets as well. If your toilet has already clogged up then you should first clean it up and then think of preventative measures.

  1. 1.Batteries for this Purpose

    If your toilet has already clogged up then you should first clean it up and then think of preventative measures.

    Some government offices have control devices in place which can automatically switch off when a leak or overflow is detected. Such devices are also available for residential use. The batteries on these can last for up to three years on an average 20 flushes per day.


    Maintaining a toilet is perhaps one of the simplest tasks around the household. Keeping in mind a few simple tips will go a long way in helping your toilet stay clean and unclogged.

  2. 2.Preventative Guidelines

    The first and foremost tip is to never throw any object into the toilet. This includes almost everything such as plastic wrappers, diapers, tampons, toys, soap bars, and even paper products. If a foreign object gets into your toilet it can cause clogging and lead to overflow. Children are likely to throw objects into the toilet when you are not watching and the only clue may be water filling up the toilet bowl.

  3. 3.Clean the Toilet

    Regular cleaning of the toilet is essential to prevent keep disease-causing bacteria and germs away. The toilet should be scrubbed with liquid detergent and disinfectants. You can also choose to put in a dissolving disinfectant which can help disintegrate some of the waste before it passes through the drain pipes. Keeping the septic tank cleaned is also something that should be done every eight to ten years. The frequency with which this is to be done will depend on the number of residents in the building as well as the capacity of the septic tank.

  4. 4.Faulty Plumbing

    In some instances, faulty plumbing may be the culprit. Pressure and gravity is what the toilet plumbing system functions on. If plumbing drains have not been installed at an adequate incline, the waste and water will not be able to flow away and will back up in the pipe. In case you have underground plumbing, you would need to check for tree roots that might have grown into the pipe or be hindering it in some way.

  5. 5.Things to Remember

    One good way of ensuring that foreign objects do not reach your toilet is to keep the lid down when it is not in use. It will minimize the chances of objects getting into the toilet even by accident. Always flush the toilet properly to prevent any waste from backing up. If you suspect faulty plumbing to be the cause, then call in a qualified plumber to take a look at it and determine the exact cause.

  6. 6.What to do in Case of Clogging

    If you suspect your toilet has clogged, the worst thing that you can do is to flush it and cause the water to flow over into the bathroom. If the water has already spilled over, mop it up, with soap and disinfectant, and by the time you are done some of the water might have receded making your task of cleaning up easier. If the object that is causing the clogging is visible, then you might be able to take it out easily and resolve this issue completely. But if the object causing the blockage is not visible, using a plunger might prove helpful. If these methods do not work, then professional help may be your only recourse.

  7. 7.Hire a Pro

    If you need help with your overflowing toilet, look to Pro Referral for help. Submit a work request for toilet repair in your local area. You’ll receive a list of possible professionals you might hire for the job. Look over the list and choose the professional you want to hire.


    Taking these precautions and implementing the suggested guidelines on a regular basis can help you keep your toilet functioning in top condition and insure it does not become clogged. Anytime you can avoid this is a good thing.

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