Toilet Gurgling: How to Identify the Problem and Fix It

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When I was a child, hearing the bubbling toilet sounds gives me some grisly thoughts just like that from horror movies: Maybe there's a monster who was trying to escape through the toilet bowl… perhaps a dreadful animal could just be breathing in the sewer drain.

Well! It's not as scary as my horrible childhood imaginations. Now I know what it was – it's toilet gurgles.

What brings about Gurgling Toilet?

Toilet gurgles are caused when negative air pressure is accumulating in the pipage of the toilet, causing stoppage and return of air flow from the pipe.

When you flush the toilet, water pressure is supposed to push the substance downward to the drain pipe into the sewer line. The inability to push the pressure through the pipe downward causes the negative pressure to return the air back, resulting in gurgling toilet sounds.

It usually notices when the toilet is flushed. Except when the gurgling toilet become frequent with weird and rumbling sounds, it shows there's an urgent need to handle the blockage before it gets messier – probably a backup.

A backup occurs when the toilet waste flows back to the bathtub drain, sink drain or toilet sink instead of channeling the waste into the city’s sewer lines.

To avoid the toilet from mess up, it is necessary to know what are the causes of toilet gurgling and how to fix it before it becomes embarrassing.

Common Causes of Toilet Gurgling and How to Fix Your Toilet from Gurgling

Clogged Toilet

A common problem caused by a clog in the toilet drain pushes back the air pressure to give rise to the gurgling toilet sounds.

What brings about this clog could be accumulation of paper towels, cigarette butts, toilet paper or other sanitary objects which are not dissolvable causing the toilet to gurgle.

To fix a clogged toilet, you can simply use a plunger – a tool that helps to free a blockage from the toilet to allow free flow of substance into the drain pipes. Pushing the plunger through the toilet adds up pressure, helping to create reverse suction that moves to loosen the clogged drain line.

Having said that, there's need to be careful in the plunging process of the toilet to avoid drawing up feces from the drain hole which might result to more plumbing issues.

Faulty Flapper

When the flapper in the toilet tank is faulty, it might lead to gurgling noise from your toilet. The function of the flapper is to flush out the water from the cistern and refill when it's empty to half full.

Getting a new flapper may be the solution when you notice this fault. In other cases, you may need to replace the cistern as a whole to fix the plumbing problem. In addressing this situation, the help of a professional plumbing service is inevitable to carry out the task.

Drain Line Clogged

There are possibilities to also experience gurgling sounds from your toilet when the drain line cannot pass water out from the toilet bowl through the drain system. If you're not familiar with plumbing it may be a good idea to learn how your different bathroom sink parts work.  It may be blocked from getting flow of substances through to the toilet fixture outside, sending back negative air pressure that gives the gurgling noise.

In most American settings, the drainage system connects the toilet to the sewer line that feeds the municipal sewer.

When this happens, you can use a plumber's snake to clean out the blockage. A plumber's snake, otherwise known as drain snake or a sewer snake, is a flexible auger used to dislodge clogs in the drain hole.

It is also advisable to call in professional plumbers to fix drain line blockage if the issue is beyond your control because of some professional tools that might be needed to clear the clogged pipe.

Credits: https://www.homeserve.com/en-us/blog/how-to/fix-common-plumbing-leaks/

Blocked Vent Stack

The moment the vent stack is obstructed from getting free flow of proper air pressure in the dwelling of the grey water, you're likely to experience the weird gurgling sound or bubbling toilet.

The vent stacks are one major part of a plumbing system that enables air flow and release of sewer gases from the sewer. The vent pipe is a vertically placed to the rooftop, helping to release exhaust gas to the air.

Blockage of the vent pipe may occur from accumulated dirt, bird's nest, carcasses from animals and other debris which hinder the flow of air to the roof, resulting in reverse of air pressure that causes bubbling sounds from the toilet.

In fixing the vent pipe issue, you might need to first take a look into the vent stack to check if the blockage is a minor one that can be solved. Get your plumber's snake to unclog the pipe from the top of the vent stack. But if you're unable to clear the vent pipe through, contact the service of a professional to check it out for fixing.

Sewer Line Clogged

The pipe that connects your building sewer to the community sewer main system may also cause toilet gurgling.

This usually caused by tree roots which grow around the sewer drain lines in the building as a result of its tap for water and nutrients.

In this case, you are not the only one affected as the whole house connected to the municipal sewer could be experiencing the same problem.

Therefore, it is necessary to call the attention of others sharing the municipal sewer line to come up with solutions for the sewer clean out to those who are affected.

Final Thoughts on Your Toilet Gurgling

Now that you are aware of the possible causes of toilet gurgling, don't hesitate to quickly fix it when noticed. It is appropriate you may want to handle the minor toilet issues as soon as possible to ensure it doesn't get worse home's plumbing.

However, when it's beyond what you can handle on your own, it is necessary to contact a professional plumber to fix it, preventing your toilet to gurgle.

Dino Paccino

Dino Paccino

Dino is a lifelong writer and home improvement specialist. He enjoys bringing cutting-edge information on home renovation and remodeling to Kitchen Infinity.

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