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When it comes to your bathroom, there is nothing worse than watching the water in your toilet rise up and over the bowl after you try and flush it. An overflowing toilet can cause a big problem very quickly. This is especially true for older toilets, as they have a harder time fighting clogs. To keep the damage an overflowing toilet can cause to a minimum, it’s important to know how to turn off the water as fast as possible. 

We want you to know how to handle this situation when it occurs, so we can come in and fix any issues with your toilet plumbing right away. Here are the steps you should take if your toilet overflows: 

For starters, whatever you do, don’t keep flushing. Doing this will not get rid of a clog, it will only push more water up and out onto your bathroom floor. We also recommend that you don’t use any chemicals until the toilet is flushing normally. Although things like Drano work for clogs, it will not work on an overflowing toilet. Plus you don’t want chemicals on your floor either. 

Now, when it comes to stopping the water, you will want to locate your shutoff valve. You are most likely to find this behind the toilet. Look for a pipe that is coming out of the wall that has a valve attached. Turn the valve clockwise until it is fully off. If your valve won’t turn, there is most likely rust or hard water damage. Don’t force the valve. Apply some WD-40 then try again.

Don’t see a shutoff valve? If you have an older toilet, you may not have one. If this is the case, pull the lid off the tank and find the float. The float is a rubber ball container that literally floats on top of the water inside the tank. In order to stop the water tank from refilling, you need to keep the float upright. You can use something like a board or wire hanger to hoist it up. This will allow you to flush the toilet and actually empty it. 

If all else fails, you can still stop the water by shutting off the main water line. Check out our tips on how to shut off your main water line and where to find it here. 

When the water has been shut off, it is now time to figure out what is causing the problem. Our plumbers will come in and check for clogs and sewer back up. These issues are best handled by our professionals because this can be a hazardous job. Call us to schedule an appointment or ask for more details about turning off your water so you can be prepared.