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Toilet Overflowing: What to Do Before Help Arrives

Toilet clogs are a problem most homeowners end up dealing with at some point or another. Plunging the toilet usually fixes the issue and allows you to get back to the rest of your day. But what happens if you end up dealing with the toilet overflowing instead?

An overflowing toilet dumps blackwater into your property. In this situation, the experts recommend getting help right away from a professional plumber in Edmond, OK. Secure assistance fast from our team at Champion Plumbing when you call 405-889-1318.

While you wait for help to arrive, follow these steps to protect your property. 

Turn Off the Water Immediately

Stopping the water represents your primary concern if you have a toilet overflowing, as turning off the water prevents additional water from entering your property. How do you stop the water in this situation? The following solutions should stop the water for you.

Use the Shut Off Valve

Every toilet should have a shut-off valve behind the tank and close to the back wall. Turn the valve to the left to stop the water from entering the toilet. Generally, these valves turn without trouble, but they may become stuck if you leave them alone for an extended period.

Take steps to unstick the valve by gathering a wrench and some WD-40. Then, follow these instructions:

  •     Spray the WD-40 on the nut by the handle of the valve
  •     Loosen the nut with the wrench 
  •     Stop loosening when you see some water droplets 
  •     Try the water valve again 

Once you have the water valve turned off, tighten the nut with the wrench again. 

Block the Tank

In addition to turning off the valve, you may open up the back of your toilet tank. You should find a rubber flapper inside. Place something heavy on top of the flapper to keep it closed to stop water from moving to the bowl from the tank. 

Exercise caution with the float ball and other moving parts inside the toilet tank to prevent further damage to your plumbing system. 

Avoid Using Drains in Your Home

In many cases, clogs cause toilet overflows. However, they are not the only possible cause of this plumbing issue. In some situations, a sewer system backup results in a toilet overflowing. 

Sewer backups occur if you develop a clog in the main sewer. In some cases, issues with your septic tank cause a backup. Your toilet may overflow as water comes back into the system each time you:

  •     Take a shower
  •     Use the dishwasher or laundry machine
  •     Run a sink 

Take steps to keep the water level in your house low by avoiding these actions until an emergency plumber can reach your property.  

Protect Your Possessions

Toilet overflows dump blackwater into your house, making them more dangerous than pipe leaks or even floods. Blackwater contains the contaminants found in raw human waste, which can include bacteria and viruses.

In general, you should not attempt to handle blackwater cleanup without appropriate safety gear. Make sure you wear gloves and boots before entering the area exposed to sewage water. You can then remove any of your personal belongings close to the overflow.

Take your belongings to a safe area and clean them thoroughly if they come into contact with the water from the toilet overflow. Learn more about leaking pipes, sewage backups, and different types of water with our team of plumbing professionals. 

Clean Up Some of the Mess

If you have appropriate safety gear, it’s a good idea to remove as much of the water from your bathroom as possible. Water causes extensive damage to flooring, walls, and cabinetry. The damage increases with each hour of exposure to excess moisture.

Consider absorbing water with towels, rags, or pieces of clothing that you don’t plan to keep. Dispose of any items that sucked up the black water carefully, sealing them up tightly and keeping them away from the rest of your belongings.

Sanitizing sprays can help you clean the area, but the experts recommend that you allow plumbing professionals to take care of the cleanup. Plumbing technicians have professional-grade cleaning supplies that can destroy the contaminants found in black water. 

Keep Pets and Children Away from the Area

Sometimes, protecting your family is the best thing you can do after a toilet overflow. Tell older children to stay away from the area and make sure younger children remain occupied in a different part of the house. You may even want to have them stay somewhere else until plumbers resolve the issue. 

Consider locking your pets in another room or the garage until plumbers arrive. Pets often become interested in the smells caused by a plumbing overflow, but the contaminants in the blackwater may make them ill if ingested. 

How Plumbers Handle a Toilet Overflow

Plumbers have the equipment and training to address the underlying cause of a toilet overflow. Our crews provide same-day service and guarantee your satisfaction. Once plumbers arrive, they check your drainpipe, toilet, and septic tank if applicable. 

Skilled technicians work to eradicate a clog, which may prevent a subsequent overflow. In some cases, the plumber may advise you regarding severe issues with your septic system, which may require more extensive plumbing services

After the plumbing company handles the clog, you may want to contact a water damage restoration company to handle water extraction and cleanup. Depending upon the amount of damage caused by the backup, many property owners end up calling their insurance company to file a claim.

Insurance agents in Edmond generally cover damage from a toilet overflow, especially if you get professional help to address the issue right away. 

Handle a Toilet Overflowing Right Away

Is your toilet overflowing? Get help from reliable plumbers in Norman by contacting Champion Plumbing at 405-889-1318. We take care of toilet clogs, sewer line repairs, drain cleaning, and more. You can even count on us to check out your water heater or water softener. You can find out more by reaching out to us today.

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The next time you need a plumbing contractor, call Champion Plumbing if you’re in the Edmond, OK area at 405-342-3571 and give us the chance to earn your business.