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Thread: After flushing water won't go down

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member annie121leal's Avatar
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    Default After flushing water won't go down

    Hi we need help. The water on the toilet when you flush won't go down... We thought it could be the toilet so we bought and replaced it with toto drake 2. But after installing it does the same thing the water just stays in the bowl and won't go down. When we took te old toilet off it doesn't seem clogged. We bought a snake and snaked it down about 25 feet my husband thinks he might have dislodged something and then the snake went further down 50 feet. He reinstalled the drake toilet and still the same problem.. We don't know what else to try.. If the snake goes all the way to 50 feet wouldn't that be enough to hold a gallon of water down? Is it the toilet that is defective? We read about something online about vent problems but could not really understand how that works or how we can fix that. Should we already hire a plumber? Thanks
    Last edited by annie121leal; 12-14-2013 at 09:39 AM. Reason: Adding a question

  2. #2
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Your drain is clogged, and you have discovered that DIY snakes are usually worthless. Likely your efforts have either not reached the clog or have just pushed it farther down the pipe. What you have to do is call a professional plumber with profession equipment. Snakes that would be big enough for the job are seldom available for DIY and even if you found one they are extremely dangerous in the hands of a DIY. Dangerous like will take a hand or arm off. You did get a very good toilet.

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    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    The drain line is at least 3", and could be larger...how big was the head on the snake you used? A pro would use one sized for the pipe.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    Flushing the toilet is the equivalent of dumping a bucket of water down the pipe. If the pipe is clogged, the water is not going to go down very quickly, if at all.

    When I have to clear a main line such as that for the toilet, the line has to be cleared from the bathroom all the way to the city sewer connection at the street. If you have roots in the line, it will hold all the paper back. The roots must be cut out using a snake with a cutter head. A proper drain clearing will scour the entire inside of the pipe through rotary action.

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    You have encountered the classic situation of doing something before you knew what had to be done. The drain line is clogged and your snake is inadequate to unplug it. My 75' snake is sometimes not long enough so I have to use the 150' one. In addition, the snakes that would be adequate do NOT come in 50' lengths, are very expensive, AND require an expensive machine to use them, none of which apply to your snake, I am sure.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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    DIY Junior Member annie121leal's Avatar
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    I agree my snake maybe inadequate. The thing that gets me is that I have the same problem in both toilets in the house. Also I dumped 5 gallons of water down the pipe just as fast as I could poor it. It did not back up at all. I thought it may be a vent issue so I also snaked both vents with my inadequate snake but still same problem.

  7. #7
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    A vent will not prevent a toilet from flushing. When the toilets were installed, did you use a wax ring with a funnel? Depending on where the toilet flange is set, the shape, and how well centered you are when placing the toilet, those silly funnels (horns) can be pinched, and nearly shut off the outlet of the toilet. They have their place, but most installs do not benefit from them. Used where needed, they work, but the average install, they can cause more problems than they supposedly solve.

    Have children? Toilets seem to be magnets for toys, crayons, pencils, pens, etc....water goes by easily, but throw any solids in there, and things get trapped.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    DIY Junior Member annie121leal's Avatar
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    So are you suggesting we try reinstalling it again without the funnel? Would that work? We're wondering too if it could be because of the septic.. We just bought this house and have no idea about the condition of the septic because we never really had it checked except that the house inspector seem to think it's in good condition.. We don't see any problem though like water back ups in the backyard or tub/sink not draining well.. I'm wondering too if this kind of toilet problem that we have us just a usual problem plumbers get and is it an easy fix for a pro? If in case it has something to do with the septic do plumbers handle those problem too? What are the odds that we got a defective toilet? Thanks

  9. #9
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    If you don't have issues with taking a shower, doing laundry, etc., and it is only the toilets, yes, I'd consider installing them with a normal wax ring without a funnel. It's a cheap experiment. FWIW, the pros install the wax ring on the flange, then set the toilet down on it. Most of the instructions on the boxes say to put it on the toilet, then set them both down. If you set the wax ring down on the flange, it will become obvious if it's going to interact with the flange (the opening may be too small and pinch it off). It also keeps the wax ring from maybe slipping prior to contact with the flange. But, anything caught in the toilet's trapway (toy, comb, hairpin, etc.) will slow things down on a flush as well.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    having the same problem with BOTH toilets, usually means the problem is NOT in the toilets, but rather in the drainage system, but there are several possible causes each with its own unique solution.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  11. #11
    DIY Junior Member annie121leal's Avatar
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    We took the toilet out again and installed it without the funnel but still the same thing.. But I did notice after taking off the toilet that there is water sitting about 1 feet down the drain.. Now I wonder if that's normal or not? I thought initially though that it is normal because when we dumped a bucket of water the water did go down but now we're not so sure.. We already called a local plumber to look at it tomorrow because it seems there are no other reasons left except a clog somewhere down the pipe.. Another thing I noticed is that whenever we flush the toilet in another bathroom it will make gurgling sound about 5-10 seconds from flushing.. And it will also do that while the laundry is running.. Like it will gurgle and gurgle every time the laundry is draining the water off.. I watched the toilet and the water from it goes down as it bubbles/gurgles and release air out.. I don't remember anything like that happening from the 2 apartments we previous lived at
    Last edited by annie121leal; 12-16-2013 at 07:47 PM. Reason: Additional stuffs

  12. #12
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    The drain pipes (at least should be) are sloped down...except for what you just dumped down the drain, it should all drain out very quickly and there should be NO standing water in the drain. The only place there should be standing water is in the trap of say a sink or shower. Two things could keep it from dropping - the leach field is clogged up and the septic tank cannot release the liquids into it (this is bad, since it may also dump some solids into the leach field in this situation, killing it), OR, there's some blockage in the drain pipe. It could be lots of things: roots, a toy, a collapsed pipe, or if the ground has settled, the pipe could literally have broken or come apart (or been crushed).
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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    DIY Senior Member wjcandee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by annie121leal View Post
    there is water sitting about 1 feet down the drain.. Now I wonder if that's normal or not?
    Yeah...not normal. I think a professional plumber may be a real help.

  14. #14
    DIY Junior Member annie121leal's Avatar
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    Thanks to everyone who responded to this thread.. Everything's resolved now.. Found out the septic was overly full.. got it pumped.. We thought that if that doesn't resolve the issue then the plumber will unclog or power wash the drain.. But both toilet works great after the septic got pumped.. No more gurgling sound after flushing or when doing laundry too.. We never had back ups though like what they usually say happens when septic is full

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