How to Flush a Toilet Without the Handle? – 3 Methods

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Paulk Webb


Freddie J. Hagopian

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how to flush a toilet without the handle

Using a toilet is a daily necessity. So, it’s a disaster if you can’t flush the toilet. It happens when the toilet is clogged or with broken parts. But there are ways you can get a toilet to flush by the answers to the following question.

How to flush a toilet without the handle? Three methods can stop you from having an unsanitary toilet with a foul odor.

  • First is pouring water directly into the toilet with the help of a bucket.
  • Secondly, you can fill the toilet tank so you can flush normally.
  • The third one is to work on the rubber flapper, so the toilet flushes.

To know the details, read on.

3 Flush a Toilet Without the Handle Methods

There are many reasons why you’ll opt for manually flushing a toilet. Aside from the need to make the toilet flush when clogged, check the tank water line.

Method 1: Pour water into the toilet bowl


You can do this method if your toilet works with gravity and it’s without running water. This toilet has a siphonic action that sends the waste to the sewer. You can also choose to do this if you have a toilet with a broken handle.

  • However, pouring water won’t work with a pressure assist or force flush toilet. This type of toilet works with gravity, but they need enough pressure to eliminate the waste. They require at least 251 PSI to operate efficiently.
  • This method is not effective on smart toilets that need electricity to work.

After determining your toilet type, you have to know how much water you need to have a successful flush.

  • You can flush new units with a gallon or two.
  • Older toilets flush completely with 5 gallons.

The right amount of water is essential to flush poop with a bucket of water.

  • Step 1: Collect 1.5 gallons of water or more.

Toilet flushing with broken parts or without the handle is possible as long as you have enough water. Bear in mind that you’ll need a lot of water for this. So, this is the first step.

  • Step 2: Manual flushing

Once you have a water supply, you can get a bucket of water for flushing a toilet without water. You have to start slowly so the toilet water won’t flush. Then, you can make it quicker gradually.

A flush can send the waste to the pipes. But some cases would require another flush or more. That’s why it’s important to prepare an adequate amount of water.

If the stool doesn’t go down even after multiple flushes, it’s best to call a professional plumber.

Method 2: Filling the water tank

You can choose this option when there’s no water, as the toilet tank plays a big part in flushing. But you can do it when the toilet bowl flush sometimes doesn’t push through.

If the toilet works as usual, you don’t have to directly flush your toilet as you only need to push the toilet’s handle after filling the tank.

Like the previous method, this does not apply to pressure-assist and smart toilets with sensors. These toilets need pressure and electricity to operate.

  • Step 1: Lift the toilet tank lid so you can check the inside.
  • Step 2: Fill the bucket with water. Then, pour water into the toilet tank to flush. Do it until the water reaches the maximum water level.
  • Step 3: Try to flush the toilet with a handle, but if it doesn’t go through, try the next method.

Method 3: Working on the flapper


A rubber flapper has a vital role in flushing a toilet. It’s the component that lets the water flow to the bowl. So, you have to lift the toilet tank cover. It’s to ensure that the problem is with the flapper.

Before you call a professional plumber, try fixing it on your end. Hence, this is like a method to flush a broken toilet. There are two ways to work on the flapper based on the issues.

Flush your toilet without a handle

You can still flush a toilet without a handle.

  • Step 1: You have to start with the removal of the toilet tank lid.
  • Step 2: Check if the chain is attached to the flapper.
  • Step 3: When the chain is still connected to the flapper, lift the chain so the flapper moves to release the water for flushing.

If the chain is not connected to the flapper, you have to move this part to let the water flow to the bowl. This is another way to flush a toilet without a bucket manually

  • Step 4: When water is not available, you have to add water to flush the toilet. It happens when there’s a leaking flapper so it can’t maintain the appropriate water level.

Flush your toilet with a broken chain

A broken chain makes the handle arm useless since the flapper won’t rise. But don’t panic as you can flush the toilet manually.

  • Step 1: Start by removing the lid so you can access the flapper.
  • Step 2: Once you open the tank, pull the flapper so you can send the water to the bowl. But if it’s broken, try to fix it.
  • Step 3: Before putting the chain back into the flapper, you have to turn off the water supply first. It’s hassle-free to work in an empty tank.
  • Step 4: After the broken chain from the top of the flapper is fixed, the toilet’s handle will work properly. When replacing a chain, you have to make sure that there’s no loose end.

Can I Pour Water Down the Toilet to Flush It?


Yes, you can pour water down the toilet for flushing. It can be done if you have a gravity-fed toilet. Note that it’s the type of toilet that doesn’t need pressure or power to work.

It’s easy to flush your toilet manually if you have enough water. But you have to use the amount of water required by your toilet.


There are three ways to follow on how to flush a toilet without the handle. You can directly flush by pouring water. If you want to minimize the mess of manual flushing, put the water in the tank and press the handle. Hence, it’s like normal flushing.

If there’s running water, checking and fixing the flapper is another way to flush a toilet manually. All these methods are the temporary solution when there’s no water and the toilet has a broken flapper.

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