How To Unclog A Toilet Without A Plunger

None of us wants to face the prospect of figuring out how to unblock a toilet, yet it is an issue we will likely all face at some point. It has to be the worst plumbing issue we can imagine coming across. Yet, help is always at hand. Whether you need the services of an emergency plumber in Sydney or unclogging and toilet repairs in Melbourne, we have the team to get the job done right at prices we know you’ll love. This article offers innovative, effective ways to recognise and unclog a toilet if you feel confident about tackling the problem yourself.

Signs you may need to unblock the toilet

Most observant individuals will not overlook an issue that requires them to unblock the toilet. Let's face it: they can be hard to miss sometimes, and you don’t need to be an expert working for WaterNSW to see when there is a problem. However, some less obvious signs to be on the lookout for include:

  • Gurgling sounds—Unusual gurgling noises mean the water is fighting to pass something, preventing its free passage to the drain.
  • Water draining slowly—Pay close attention to how your toilet water drains away after flushing. The issue may build up over time and not be immediately apparent, but if you notice the water draining at a different rate than it once did, the chances are you need to unblock the toilet.
  • Rising water upon flushing—This is almost certainly a sign that you must figure out how to unclog a toilet. Rising water is a telltale sign of a blockage that can ruin your day if you foolishly decide to flush again and the water breaches the rim. Be warned.
  • Strong odours—This issue may not be prevalent with all types of toilets and will depend mainly on how much water sits in the bowl after flushing and it has settled. Water is a natural barrier preventing most smells from reaching the bathroom, but some cisterns use less water. There is also a brief moment when the bowl is completely drained, which may allow smells to permeate. Either way, you may need to unclog the toilet if you notice lingering unpleasant odours.

How to unblock a toilet without a plunger

When debating how to clean a blocked drain, most people think of the good old-fashioned plunger. A mid-length stick with a giant suction cup on the end that you can move up and down repeatedly to push air through the drains and unseat any stubborn blockages. There is no doubt that a plunger is an essential tool in the age-old battle of how to unclog a toilet fast, but what if you still need a plunger, and it's too late to buy one? The following are some practical tips on how to unblock a badly blocked toilet:

  • Toilet brush—It is safe to assume that most toilets have a toilet brush on hand for cleaning the bowl, and this can be used as a kind of makeshift plunger in a pinch. While it will be less effective than a plunger, any suction you can produce by repeatedly moving the brush in and out of the pipe may be enough to dislodge the blockage and solve the problem.
  • Boiling water—If the blockage is made up of compacted soft material like toilet tissue, there is a good chance you can soften it enough to break up and be pushed through the system by pouring boiling water into the toilet bowl. Exercise caution with older, fragile porcelain bowls, as they may be susceptible to cracking with such drastic temperature changes.
  • Liquid soap—Washing-up liquid is superb at cutting through grease and lubricating difficult materials. Use half a cup and let it sit for a while to dissipate. This may just be enough to unclog the toilet, or you may need to use this method in conjunction with some of the others mentioned here.
  • Wire coat hanger—Manipulating a wire coat hanger to the shape of your U-bend can be an effective way to dislodge stubborn materials. The bare metal may leave marks on your enamel, so be careful about where it contacts the bowl and try to work the blockage loose through back-and-forth movements and enough force.
  • Salt/baking soda/vinegar solution—Mix a cup of baking soda with 2 of vinegar and add some salt for good measure. Add some warm water and pour the mixture into your toilet bowl. Let it sit for a while, preferably overnight, and the enzymes will break down grease and other materials. You may be able to unblock the toilet using these simple, non-toxic materials that are inexpensive and highly effective. Give the blockage some encouragement with a plunger if it is not enough to do the job unassisted.

If none of these do the trick, there may be a more serious issue you are unaware of underlying the situation and it is time to call in the professionals.

Dr. Leak

We hope this article has given you some valuable tips and tricks to figure out how to unclog a toilet. Unpleasant jobs like this are best left to trained professionals like those at Dr Leak Plumbing. We have an impeccable record of professional integrity and stand proudly by our hard-earned reputation for quality. Our founder gathered a skilled team of fully accredited, experienced technicians and instilled an ethos of fairness and attention to detail that pervades everything we do as a company.

Please take a few moments to peruse the site and informative blog to better understand how we view our clients and go the extra distance to ensure their satisfaction, as evidenced by our many excellent reviews.

Contact us

To meet the team and walk us through your plumbing problems, please contact us today. Whether you need toilet repairs in Sydney or a professional, efficient plumber in Melbourne, you will not be disappointed you chose Dr Leak to help. We guarantee a rapid, courteous response and all the assistance you need when disaster strikes and you are wondering how to unclog a toilet fast.

What To Do When Your Toilet Is Leaking At The Base?

Of all the plumbing issues it is possible to experience in life, the least enticing is that of a leaking toilet. Although it is a situation many people dread, when the worst happens, and you find your toilet leaking from the bottom, it is prudent to do some quick investigating before taking further action. If the toilet is gushing water at an uncontrollable, damaging rate, your priority should be to turn off the mains water. This is nothing more than a temporary solution, as a functioning toilet is one of life's non-negotiable elements, but it will buy you some time and stop the flooding.

It should be relatively straightforward to ascertain whether you have a blocked toilet as soon as you lift the lid. However, not all leaks will be so simple to identify. The following guide to handling a toilet leaking water at the base contains some great tips and advice for the budding DIY hero, but our advice is to remain calm and call out the experts.

Toilet leaking at base guide

What causes a toilet to leak from the bottom?

Most people can imagine why the toilet bowl might fill up and overflow when clogged, but a toilet leaking at the base is a different proposition entirely. Neither is pleasant to contemplate, but water dripping from the connection between the tank and the bowl is a far more tolerable proposition, as the water will be relatively clean thanks to the efforts of WaterNSW. Some potential causes of a leaking toilet base are as follows:

The connection between the toilet bowl and the tank

Almost all standard toilets have a wide connecting pipe between the water tank and the bowl, allowing the water to flush when the handle is depressed. This joint necessitates an O-ring, usually rubberised or wax, that can perish over time and leak. If this gasket is loose or cracked, water will find its way past and manifest as water leaking from the base of the toilet. This will only happen when the toilet is flushed, and water rushes past, so it should not necessitate turning the water off entirely.

If the O-ring is intact, it may be that the connection is not tight enough or has become loose through thousands of micro-movements over time or even an uncommon occurrence like an earthquake. Carefully but firmly shake the bowl and feel for movement. Either way, this toilet seal leaking is the best-case scenario, and tightening the bolts should be enough to remedy the issue within minutes. Replacing the bolts or the O-ring may also be necessary, but that may require assistance depending on your confidence level and capability to handle the task yourself. If in doubt, call us out.


In humid areas like bathrooms, moisture can condense on the cooler surface on the underside of a toilet bowl or the tank and connecting pipes. This can give the impression of the toilet leaking around the base, although it is merely condensation collecting and moving from the bowl to the floor. Especially prevalent in toilets that share spaces with showers and the steam they give off when the temperature drops, that moisture finds its way onto the outer surfaces of the toilet and, subsequently, the floor.

This is a dream result compared to others mentioned here, so thank your lucky stars, install an extractor fan for the moist air, or keep the temperature up in the room to prevent condensation. Alternatively, you might install a drip tray at the toilet’s base to collect and empty the water regularly.

Other potential causes of a toilet leaking water at the base

If your toilet leaks when flushed at the base, there are some other potential culprits to be aware of, including:

  • Split supply line or loose connection
  • Clogged drain line
  • Cracked toilet bowl

None of these is a disaster in the broader scheme of things, but neither are they something you can ignore, and hope will go away. Call in the professionals as soon as you notice the problem, do not allow it to spread, and create new ones as it does so.

How to fix a leaking toilet base

The straightforward answer to this is don’t. There are some jobs that life is too short to undertake on a DIY basis, and, as far as we're concerned, anything involving a toilet leaking from the bottom when flushed is reasonably high on that list. Luckily, expert, licensed professionals like the ones at Dr Leak Plumbing are more than willing to step in and take the quandary of how to fix a leaking toilet off your shoulders. Pick your battles and leave the unpleasant jobs to those who know how best to handle them.

Dr leak plumbing

From the services of an emergency plumber in Sydney to much-needed toilet repairs in Melbourne, we can handle any task, no matter how large or small. Our commitment to the highest standards in everything we do never wavers, and you can rest assured that when you turn to us, you are in the safest hands in the business. When you use our services, you are guaranteed the following:

  • Fair, transparent prices with no hidden fees
  • Rapid, effective response
  • Free call-outs if booked before 5 pm
  • Lifetime labour warranty
  • Emergency assistance 24/7
  • The undivided attention of trained technicians
  • Booking discounts online
  • 6-month interest-free payment plans

Contact us

Dr Leak’s excellent record and reputation have been meticulously built up by our founder and a hand-picked team of experienced, fully accredited technicians. Their collective dedication to going above and beyond to ensure our clients' satisfaction and perfect results does not go unnoticed; look at our reviews and read our informative blog, and we think you'll understand what we mean.

If you would like to meet the team and discuss your exact plumbing issues, whether you require a plumber in Melbourne or toilet repairs in Sydney, please get in touch with us at your earliest convenience; we will gladly give you all the information, advice, and guidance you need or spring into action if you have a toilet leaking from the bottom.