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What to Do When Your Toilet Overflows

picture of toilet

It’s a home disaster that really stinks – you have a clogged toilet that has overflowed, flooding your bathroom.

Panicking might be your first instinct. But what you need to do is take immediate action before the mess gets even worse!

Here’s our advice on what to do if your toilet overflows.

Shut Off Your Water!

The first thing you need to do when the water starts rising in your toilet bowl is to shut off the water right away! If you have a more modern toilet, your toilet most likely has a shutoff valve that’s connected to a pipe attached to the bottom of the toilet. Simply turn that valve clockwise until you can’t turn it anymore.

Another quick way to shut off the water is to lift the float lever inside the toilet tank up. When you lift the tank’s lid, you’ll see a float at the top of the water. Whenever you flush the toilet, the float will fall and open the water valve. Secure the float at the top of the tank by holding up the lever with something sturdy like a piece of wood. This will keep the valve closed, and the water from flowing.

You could also turn off your home’s main water shutoff valve completely to cut the water supply.

Keep the Water Inside the Bathroom

Now that you have the water shut off and have stopped the flood, the next thing you should do is make sure it doesn’t overflow into the rest of your house! Close the bathroom door, grab a stack of towels, and start soaking up the water. We don’t recommend starting with the area around the toilet, because that’s likely to push water out in the direction of the area immediately outside the bathroom, leaving you with an even bigger mess. Start piling towels around the door instead.

Unclog the Toilet

While not at all fun, it’s certainly necessary. Grab a plunger and start the unclogging process. That will cause more water to flow over the bowl, so make sure you are prepared with more towels to absorb it. Once you have the toilet unclogged, you can turn the water back on. Flush the toilet to make sure it doesn’t overflow again. If it does – give Benjamin Franklin Plumbing a call at 1-877-BEN-1776 or contact us online. We can help you out!

Clean Up the Water

If you don’t clean up the water properly, it could lead to mold and mildew growth, which is a serious health hazard. If simply mopping up the water and cleaning the affected area doesn’t do the trick, our sister brand STOP Restoration can assist. Their team will arrive at your home promptly, assess the water damage, and provide a plan of action for water damage restoration.

Take Steps to Make Sure It Doesn’t Happen Again!

An overflowing toilet is often the result of flushing something you shouldn’t have. Here are a few of the most common reasons why your toilet might be clogged. Keeping this list in mind may help you prevent your toilet from overflowing in the future!

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