Tackling Toilet Overflow While Running Water
If your toilet begins to overfill or spill while you’re taking a shower, this indicates a blockage issue between your toilet drain and the sewer system. Assuming that you’ve taken care of any obvious problems that a simple plunger can handle, the next step involves more specialized pieces of sewage cleaning equipment.
1. Using a Pipe Snake
A pipe snake is a flexible, reinforced steel coil, typically around an inch in diameter. They are used to break up and move drain clogs that cause toilet overflow and other sewage backup issues. Many clogs are not deep enough to require professional intervention and can be removed simply by snaking from the toilet bowl. If the U-bend or other feature of the toilet proves to be an obstacle to snaking, then the entire toilet can be moved to expose the drain. In either case, be prepared to absorb any excess water that may leak out as a result of the snaking process.
2. Deeper Clogs
Sometimes the toilet backup is the result of a clogged pipe closer to the sewer and will require venturing out of the bathroom and into the crawlspace or basement. Removing the main drain and inserting the snake will likely require additional tools such as a pipe wrench. Depending on the design of your home, the required direction and distance for proper snaking may vary. If the backup is severe or has persisted for a long time, additional sewage cleaning may be necessary beneath the home.
Sometimes the nature of the clog can require professional intervention. If the apparent distance of the clog is too far for a homeowner-grade snake or if you believe the cause is related to damage or root-blocked pipes closer to the sewer, call a local plumber.
The above strategies ensure proper maintenance and function of your sewer system. If water backup becomes extreme and sewage cleaning becomes necessary in your living space, contact a certified cleanup professional.