Little known fact: The 11th commandment (of the Apartment Dwelling Bible) states, ‘Thou shalt own a plunger.’
Why is owning a plunger so important? Because they are terribly useful in terribly inconvenient situations. Plungers are the only immediate remedy to a blocked toilet and/or drain.
Where do I get a plunger?
Any home improvement store, such as Lowe’s or Home Depot will have them, as well as Target or Walmart. We recommend getting the no-nonsense black rubber plunger with wooden handle.
How do I use a plunger?
The art of plunging is simple to master:
- Turn the water to the toilet off by turning the valve behind the toilet clockwise (to the right).
- Place the plunger over the drain opening, creating a seal over the drain.
- With some force and speed (you might get a little splashed, so be ready) push the handle down so that dome shape of the plunger caves in.
- Repeat until your drain is unclogged. You can often hear the drain unclog.
- Turn the water back on by turning the valve counterclockwise (to the left).
- For more visual advice: Plunging how-to video
But I Don't Have a Plunger & My Toilet Is Blocked
No fear! There is a method of unclogging a toilet called the Water-Gravity Method, which does not call for a plunger.
How you do it:
- Grab the biggest container you have and fill it with water.
- Position your container a few feet above the toilet bowl, poised to pour out the water.
- Simultaneously flush the toilet while pouring the water quickly into the bowl.
- The force of the extra water will typically take care small to medium clogs.