Toilet Paper Breaks Up and Clogs When Flushing

Different types of toilet paper break down more than others. Depending on which materials the paper is made of, it may clog your toilet because it does not adequately break down. There could also be other causes besides the toilet paper itself that lead to a clogged toilet when you flush.

More Durable Toilet Paper

Many toilet paper brands are chosen because the paper is thicker, tougher and more durable. If the components that make these toilet papers plusher and softer do not break down easily, the paper sticks to the trapway inside the toilet, partially or completely blocking it and causing water to back up in the bowl. Paper that does not break down easily also impedes the function of the septic system, and eventually clogs the plumbing pipes.

Changing Toilet Paper

If your toilet is already prone to clogging in the past, you may want to avoid thicker toilet paper, which may only help contribute to future clogs. If you use a thick toilet paper because of the comfort it offers you, but the toilet continually clogs when you flush it, consider alternatives. Choose a thin toilet paper and see if the toilet still clogs. These brands will likely not only exit your toilet pipes more easily, but will also be less likely to clog your septic system.

Too Much Paper

Even if your household uses a thin paper, or one that breaks down easily, the toilet will definitely still clog if you use too much paper for each flush. When you do this, so much paper is jammed into the toilet drain and trapway that it gets stuck and causes a blockage. This situation can happen by mistake, or it can happen if too much paper is purposefully dumped into the toilet, as can sometimes happen with mischievous young children.

Other Causes

The toilet paper may break up properly, and may not by itself be causing clogs. Sometimes a partial clog already exists inside the toilet trapway or inside the toilet's drainpipe. This could be because of a small plastic child's toy that has lodged within the toilet or pipe. Also, if the toilet wrongly doubles as a household dustbin, anything from paper towels to cotton swabs may be stuck. A larger problem could also be tree roots that have entered through the drainpipe, causing a partial blockage.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Christopher John has been a freelance journalist since 2003. He has written for regional newspapers such as "The Metro Forum" and the "West Tennessee Examiner." John has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Memphis State University.