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Hypothetical Disaster of the Week: Overflowing toilet

Bathroom with Brown and Gold accents

It's a disaster that we all face at one point or another - the toilet has overflowed and waste is backing up onto the floor of your bathroom. While this is a fairly common occurrence in most households, not all ailing toilets have the same diagnosis. Based upon the severity of the clog, there could be any number of deficiencies in your home's plumbing causing your toilets to malfunction.

From a simple clog in the trap of the toilet that can be remedied using a plunger to a reverse flow of waste coming up from your city's sewers, these events are all pretty disgusting, and no matter how large or small the problem, you'd be wise to contact a professional Arlington plumbing service before the backup gets any worse.

While you are waiting for a plumber to come inspect your pipes, there are a few steps you can take to manage the overflow in the meantime. Begin by turning off the toilet's main water valve, which should be located behind the seat near the floor. Gently reach down and turn the valve's handle clockwise with your hand - avoid using a wrench, as this will likely provide an unnecessary amount of pressure and could potentially damage or break the valve. If the water continues to overflow out of your basin after this, you may have to shut off your home's main water valve, which will turn off the entire supply of water into your house.

Once you have turned off the water, do all you can to make sure that any mess that accumulated as a result of the overflow is cleaned up immediately. Not only will this make the job easier for the plumber, but it will also lower the risk of stains or mold developing around your toilet.