A plunger is both one of the most useful and most dreaded tools the average household owns. Most of us hope never to have to use our plungers, but they’re certainly a valuable friend to have on hand when you find yourself facing a blocked toilet or overflowing sink. If you’ve never used a plunger before, here is how to go about it. Just remember: Plunging blocked drains is messy work, so before you begin, you may want to surround the area with some old towels, and put on appropriate clothes.
Step 1: Make sure you have the right plunger for the job.
You may not realise it, but plungers come in different shapes. The traditional style you are probably picturing (a rubber cup on the end of a wooden stick) is best suited for use in flat baths or sinks. For unclogging a toilet, bellows-style plungers are more effective. Given that you probably don’t want to use the same plunger on your toilet and on your kitchen sink anyway, it’s worth having one of each style on hand to tackle different jobs. Regardless of which type of plunger you are using, the following steps are the same.
Step 2: Position the plunger correctly
Put the end of the plunger over the blocked drain, and get a good seal over the drain opening. Make sure the rubber part of the plunger is completely covered in water, but (in the interests of not splashing everywhere while you work) scoop out as much excess water as possible if the level is higher than necessary.
Step 3: Plunge away!
Push down on the handle of the plunger, then pull back again, being careful not to disturb the seal you’ve made over the drain. Around 30 seconds of quick, firm thrusts like this should be enough to clear your blockage.
Still experiencing problems?
If your efforts with the plunger are unsuccessful, and you’re confident that you’ve followed the steps correctly, it’s probably time to call in professional help. You may be facing a blockage which needs more specialised tools, or you may be facing a different issue altogether. PNG Solutions offer emergency plumbing services, and our experienced plumbers are always on call to help with blocked drains, troubleshooting, and general repairs.