An object is stuck in my toilet

Written by steven symes
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An object is stuck in my toilet
Clogs from objects in a toilet require a different approach than other blockages. (Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images)

Sometimes objects, other than waste, fall into the toilet or are placed there on purpose by a mischievous child, requiring you to take care of the clog in a way you would not normally handle other blockages. You will use some of the same tools to remove the object as you would use to unclog a toilet without a foreign object inside, with a few subtle differences in how you use some of those same tools.

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Pull the Object Out

Before you do anything else, including flush the toilet anymore and force the object further down the waste pipe, attempt to remove the object by hand. Put on a rubber glove if the thought of reaching into the toilet unsettles you. Reach as far into the trap as you can without getting your wrist stuck and pull out any object you can feel. You can also try using a tool, like a bent coat hanger, to reach further into the toilet trap and hook the object.

Plunge

Use a plunger to unclog your toilet. However, if the object is valuable, you should not use the plunger to avoid having the object go all the way down the trap and into the sewer or septic tank. A plunger needs some standing water around the trap opening to work best. Funnel-cup plungers work better with toilets than regular plungers that have an open bottom to the plunger's cup. Once you have the toilet trap covered with the plunger's cup, pump the plunger's handle up and down to apply pressure and force the object through the pipe.

Snake the Object Out

A toilet snake or auger consists of a handle and a long, flexible line with a hook on the end. You can use a pair of needle-nose pliers to make the hook on the end of the snake or auger bigger, depending on the size of the object to be removed. Feed the end of the snake into the bowl and down the toilet trap but be careful to avoid scratching the porcelain with the snake's hook. Once the end of the snake is in the trap, push it down the pipe until you feel resistance. Turn the handle clockwise two or three times to hook the object then retract the snake from the pipe.

Remove the Toilet

If your other methods of extraction fail, you will need to remove the toilet from its wax ring on the floor to retrieve the object. Before you can remove the toilet, you must shut off the water and disconnect the water line from the water supply valve. You also must remove the nuts from the closet bolts at the base of the toilet. Once you remove the toilet, lay it down sideways on a thick blanket so you do not damage the porcelain. With the toilet on its side you are free to work on removing the stuck object. Once you have removed it, you must scrape off the old wax ring and place a new one on the flange around the pipe opening in the floor then replace the toilet. Tighten the screws so the toilet does not rock or move then reconnect the water supply line.

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