How to Fix a Slow Draining Toilet? – 4 Effective Solutions

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Paulk Webb


Freddie J. Hagopian

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how to fix a slow draining toilet

Are you struggling and asking yourself how to fix a slow draining toilet? If it’s your first time facing this issue, don’t despair—you can actually fix it yourself!

When your toilet drains very slowly, start by checking the drain for any built-up clogs, then tackle the blockage with a plunger or use a drain snake to remove the obstruction. Once it’s gone, run hot water through the drain to clear out any junk or debris. With simple steps like these, your toilet should drain like normal in no time.

Read on to get into details on how to tackle this issue!

Fix a Slow-Draining Toilet With a Plumber/ Plumber Snake

</p> <h3>1. Use a plunger</h3> <p>


What to prepare:

  • A plunger
  • Gloves

To unclog a slow toilet, you may try using a plunger to pump out the clog that gets stuck down the toilet pipe. This is an effective remedy for almost all of your toilet issues, and you can buy a plunger at any hardware store. Before you start, remember to put on your gloves to protect your hands.

  1. Put the plunger’s seal onto the toilet pipe so that its head is completely submerged in water. Then, pump it several times in slow and gentle motion until you feel no air left in the plunger, and the suction tightens the seal.
  2. Now you need to increase the plunging movement to create enough pressure and push away the clog.
  3. After that, you may flush the toilet and see whether the issue has been solved. You can repeat this method a few times to get the best result.
</p> <h3>2. Use a drain snake</h3> <p>


What to prepare:

  • A drain snake
  • Gloves

A drain snake, or “auger,” is made specifically for toilets. It has a metal or plastic arm that can reach deep down the toilet’s drain hole and easily pull out the clogs on its way.

To use this drain snake for removing clogs, start by observing the drain snake. There is a plastic elbow that is made to fit the toilet’s drain hole, and it also prevents scratching the toilet porcelain.

  1. First, put the drain snake into the toilet’s hole, and make sure you push the plastic elbow until you reach the wax seal area at the opening of the drain pipe.
  2. Now, rotate the drain snake to remove clogs around the area, then push and pull to get rid of the clogs completely.
  3. With the drain snake still inside the toilet, try to flush it a few times to see if it works. If not, then you can repeat the process until the debris is removed.

There’s one thing you need to take into consideration. If used incorrectly, the drain snake can scratch the toilet or get stuck inside. Since the toilet has curves inside the pipe, using the drain snake might be a bit complex unless you have experience in this type of work.

</p> <h3>3. Remove clogs with hot water and dishwashing liquid</h3> <p>


What to prepare:

  • Hot water (3-5 gallons)
  • Dishwashing liquid
  • Drain cleaner (optional)

If your toilet still drains slowly when flushed, you may use a chemical or detergent. However, this method can be harmful to the toilet if it’s overused since it can erode the toilet’s ceramic surface or pollute the water sources.

When it comes to your toilet draining slowly, it is best to use a home remedy first to avoid possible risks to your toilet.

Hot water, together with dishwashing liquid, is considered to be one of the best methods for removing big and stubborn clogs. The pressure created when we pour a large amount of hot water would push the blockage down the drain hole and to the outside.

Dish soap also helps to soften and break down the toilet’s buildup inside the pipes. Also, it would not hurt if you used some drain cleaner mixed with the hot water, as long as you remember to choose a toilet-approved product with detailed usage instructions.

  1. Prepare 3 to 5 gallons of hot water and slowly pour it evenly around the toilet drain hole. Do not concentrate on one spot, as it may lead to cracking.
  2. Next, remove the tank’s lid and pour about a tablespoon of dishwashing liquid into the overflow tube, which will later go through the toilet jets on the bowl’s rim.
  3. You can add drain cleaner to the toilet bowl if you like.
  4. Let the toilet sit for 15 to 30 minutes before you flush unless the drain cleaner you use requires immediate flushing.
</p> <h3>4. Clean the toilet’s siphon jet and rim jets</h3> <p>


What to prepare:

  • A coat hanger (or toothbrush, key hex,…)
  • Vinegar

Also known as the “coat hanger method,” this solution requires deep cleaning to remove any clogs and dirt in the siphon jet or rim jets. Sometimes, these two components get blocked with mineral or metallic deposits, so the toilet flushes slowly and incompletely.

You can use a coat hanger to clean the holes by poking and prodding the rim jets and the siphon jets. If you find using a coat hanger difficult, try some alternatives, like a toothbrush or a key hex.

To make the toilet’s surface clean, you can pour some vinegar into the tank’s overflow tube. This slow flushing toilet vinegar fixing method is great because the solution contains a light acid, making it easier to break down the stubborn grime.

What is the Reason for This Problem?


A toilet draining slowly could be explained mostly by a clog that blocks the toilet pipe, mineral buildup around the siphon jet and rim jets, or a low water level.

Over time, some minerals in hard water, such as calcium and magnesium, can build up along the siphon and rim jets, which are the components that fill the bowl with water after a flush.

Water pressure is needed to make these jet holes bring water to the toilet bowl; hence, mineral buildup can decrease the pressure and slowly drain the toilet.

A low water level inside the tank could cause trouble as well. If the water level is below the recommended level, water pressure could be weakened. This is the case when the toilet is flushing slowly but not clogged. In this case, you should consider calling a plumber since fixing a tank’s inside is no easy job.

Clogs and blockages would get in the way of the water flow. Hence, the toilet tank fills up with water then slowly drains through the drain pipe. If you don’t know whether there are clogs, you can try pouring a large amount of water and checking if the water rises faster than normal. If it does, then there might be a clog in the pipe.



Will a slow-draining toilet fix itself?

A slow-draining toilet caused by clogs could fix itself if the clogs are built up by materials that can dissolve in water, for instance, paper.

However, materials that can’t dissolve in water could get stuck in the pipe until pressure pushes them out. They can be wipes, pads, diapers, or even fat and oil from food. In this case, consider applying some slow flushing toilet solutions to get rid of these stubborn clogs.

Does pouring a bucket of water help unclog a toilet?

Pouring a large amount of water into the toilet would create a strong pressure that could push out any dirt or blockages inside the pipes. You can actually keep pushing down the toilet’s handle to let the water keep flushing down to maximize the water pressure.

Hot water also helps in softening clogs, and adding some “supporters,” such as vinegar or dishwashing liquid, could quickly resolve the problem of a slow-draining toilet.


Regarding how to fix a slow draining toilet, the key is looking for root causes and trying a home remedy before using chemical solutions. If you’re unsure, you can ask the plumbing community on Reddit and seek advice from professional plumbers.

To conclude, regularly checking the toilet and taking preventive measures, such as flushing slowly or installing a toilet guard, is important. If these tips do not work, it may be time to call a professional plumber to do the job correctly.

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