New Customer Special

Plungers: Are You Using the Right One?

Not all clogs require a plumber. That said, a lot of people have a difficult time using a plunger to unclog a toilet. The problem usually stems from one of two things: the type of plunger being used, or the technique.

There are two types of plungers: a cup plunger and flange plunger. Cup plungers are used to unclog sinks, tubs and showers. The plunger itself looks like a half-sphere. Flange plungers, on the other hand, have an extended rubber lip. Flange plungers are used to unclog toilets. Toilets have a different opening than sinks, tubs and showers, and the extended rubber lip of a flange plunger helps to create a good seal on a toilet.

Before you start plunging, evaluate the water level. If there is too much water in the bowl, you will experience backsplash when you are plunging. Place the plunger over the drain opening; the water level should come half-way up the rubber portion of the plunger. If you need to, remove or add some water to reach the desired level.

Get a really tight seal and then, with the plunger handle straight and plunge with a vertical up-and-down action. If you plunge at an angle, the seal will come loose. Plunge for 15-20 seconds and break the seal. If the water in the bowl doesn’t drain, repeat. If the clog is far enough down the pipe, you may need to use a plumbing snake, or call JMAC Plumbing & Air to clear the clog for you.

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