How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What’s Broken

With this article you will learn how to manually flush a toilet. We will also explain the main reasons why the flush can break and help to fix it
By
reviewed
Reviewed by
Last updatedLast updated: May 13, 2023
Bathroomer is reader-supported. We may earn a commission through products purchased using links on this page. Learn more about our process here

You have at least one toilet in your home and often have two or three, depending on the size of your home. You don’t really think about how they function until you push that handle and nothing happens. It’s at this point that your toilet becomes the most important fixture in your home and requires immediate attention to get rid of the waste you’ve deposited into it.

If it won’t flush the way it’s supposed to, you aren’t stuck with a full bowl of nastiness, as long as you know how to manually flush a toilet. There are a few ways to do this, depending on the issue at hand that is preventing this process. Once you get rid of what’s in the bowl, you can move on to the reason for the lack of flushing to keep it from happening the next time you need the toilet.

How to Flush a Toilet without Handle

Flushing a toilet is easy once you know the proper process. Of course, the method you use could depend on the type of toilet Trusted Source Toilets through the ages You may use one every day but have you ever considered the history of the toilet? We reveal some strange but interesting facts about this rather whiffy subject… www.show.me.uk you have.

Fill toilet bowl

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenEvery type of flushing toilet will feature a bowl, including the Kohler K-3889-0 Highline model with a comfortable height and an elongated toilet bowl. Even the dual flushing toilets have a bowl, so you can use the bucket flush toilet method to clear out what’s been deposited.

All you need to do is fill a bucket with water and pour it into the toilet bowl, being careful not to spill or overflow it. Once a water level in the bowl hits a certain level, it will flush automatically.

Lift flapper

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenYou can also try to flush a toilet from the tank by lifting the flapper. Though there are different types of flappers Trusted Source Choosing the Right Toilet Flapper Understand the variety of toilet flappers that are on the market and the best option for your toilet and to prevent toilet leaks. waterheroinc.com , they all work the same for this simple method. To do this, you need to lift the lid off of the toilet tank and pull on the chain connected to the flapper, lifting it and releasing the water. If the chain isn’t attached to the flapper, you must reach into the water and lift this piece.

The water is clean, so don’t worry about getting your hands dirty in the process
. Once the flapper is lifted, gravity will pull the water down and into the bowl, flushing it away.

Fill water tank

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenAnother method to flush a toilet manually is to pour water directly into the water tank rather than the bowl. This will only need to be done if little to no water is in the tank for the proper flushing process. To do this, you need to remove the tank lid, tug on the chain to lift the flapper, and then pour the water into the tank.

How to Flush Toilet with Broken Chain

If you need to flush a toilet with a broken chain, this is easy to do, plus it allows you to fix or replace the chain once the toilet has been flushed.

Fill the water tank

If the chain on your toilet has come loose or breaks, you can still flush the toilet by adding water to the tank. Remove the lid and lift the flapper on the bottom of the tank, then carefully pour in some water until the toilet flushes as it’s supposed to.

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenReattach chain

Once the toilet has flushed and the tank is empty, turn off the water to the toilet and fix the chain. If it has come loose from the handle or the flapper, you can hook it back on and test it to be sure it lifts the flapper when you push the handle. If the chain is broken, you can purchase a new one at your local hardware store and replace it in very little time. Again, test it to be sure it is working properly, then turn the water back on to fill the tank again so your toilet is ready for the next time you need it.

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenMain Reasons Toilet Won’t Flush

There are a few reasons why a toilet won’t flush, each of which requires a specific solution to keep that water flowing when you need it.

Clogs

Clogs can happen when there is too much debris in the bowl to fit down the pipes that lead out of your toilet bowl. There are several methods to unclog a toilet, like using a plunger, adding dish soap or vinegar and baking soda, or even pouring hot water into the bowl.

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenBroken handle

A broken handle is another reason your toilet won’t flush. Though we’ve described a few ways to flush a toilet without a handle, the best solution is to replace the broken one to keep your toilet working as it’s designed to. You don’t need to be a skilled plumber for this job, either, since this type of repair is quite simple.

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenBroken fill valve

The toilet fill valve is the piece in the toilet tank that allows water to move from the tank and into the bowl when you press the handle or button to flush. The Toto TSU99A.X is a popular choice, due to the adjustable height and flow rate it features. If this piece is broken, there won’t be any water filling the tank, so it is impossible to fill the bowl to flush it.

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenLow water level

The main reason for a low water level in your toilet is due to a broken or damaged fill tube, which is a flexible plastic piece that controls how high the water gets in the tank. The toilet’s float arm could also be damaged or at the wrong height. This prevents the water tank from filling as high as it’s supposed to.

To solve this issue, you’ll need to first determine which part of the toilet tank’s internal workings is causing the water level to remain too low. Then you can adjust the faulty part or replace it with a new one. If you can’t figure out what the problem is on your own, you can call a plumber to look into this issue for you to get it solved as quickly as possible.

How to Manually Flush a Toilet and Repair What's BrokenBroken lift chain

A broken lift chain is another common reason that your toilet won’t flush. This thin metal chain connects the long internal handle piece to the flapper at the base of the toilet tank. There are hooks that can come loose from the handle or flapper, which can be reattached to solve the issue. If the chain breaks, then it will need to be replaced with a new chain to keep the handle lifting that flapper when you press it after using the toilet. These chains are easy to replace and very cheap to buy, so it takes only minutes to put a new one in your toilet to get it working again.

Final Thoughts

Your toilet gets used for one of the most unspeakable bodily functions there is, so you likely put very little thought into its workings until you actually need it. Even then you probably only pay attention to the job it is doing in the most basic sense but when it fails, that piece of equipment will have your full attention.

Luckily, knowing how to manually flush a toilet gets rid of the waste you’ve expelled at that time, though fixing the issue should become a priority to ensure you don’t need to worry about those nasty leavings in the bowl in the future. Then, once you’ve solved the problem, you can go back to forgetting about your toilet until you need it again.

References

1.
Toilets through the ages
You may use one every day but have you ever considered the history of the toilet? We reveal some strange but interesting facts about this rather whiffy subject…
2.
Choosing the Right Toilet Flapper
Understand the variety of toilet flappers that are on the market and the best option for your toilet and to prevent toilet leaks.
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *