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Spectre of Pithecanthropus
05-23-2008, 12:42 PM
Last night around 7PM we dropped a bar of Dove Soap down the toilet. It's too far down to reach, but it's still preventing the toilet from flushing the way it should.

The water will go down, but it doesn't "suck and gurgle" the way it's supposed to. Instead, after it's flushed, the bowl nearly fills to the top and then the water level slowly goes back down in a few seconds.

Is there any way to make the soap dissolve more quickly?

Whack-a-Mole
05-23-2008, 12:53 PM
Well, you could try and make it so the toilet runs non-stop (tape the handle down or something). Probably take hours though to dissolve (although it really only needs to dissolve enough so it will wash down the pipe).

Best choice really is to get a pipe snake (http://www.jackstoolshed.zoovy.com/product/53733?meta=FRG&utm_source=GBASE&utm_medium=CPC&utm_content=&utm_campaign=) and dig it out.

Or, shut off the water and drain the toilet and undo the pipes in the back if it is stuck there.

Or call a plumber.

samm
05-23-2008, 01:41 PM
If a tooth will dissolve when left in a can of cola overnight, why won't a bar of soap also dissolve that way? Pour a few liters of Coke down there! Actually, I would think that just from sitting there soaking in the water it would soften up and be flushable before too long. As long as you have a different bathroom to use in the meantime!

Rhythmdvl
05-23-2008, 01:42 PM
A similar thread (http://www.rantsnraves.org/showthread.php?t=1884) from a different message board (I wasn't reading a non-Dope MB, honest! I just Googled "what dissolves soap."). It's got a couple good suggestions, a good science answer, and a nice list of things to do with the perpetrator.

Tom Tildrum
05-23-2008, 04:00 PM
One suggestion in that thread was boiling water, but you may want to be wary of this option. In theory, boiling water could crack the bowl.

DrDeth
05-23-2008, 08:13 PM
Very hot water will do and is easier. And have you tried a toilet plunger?

GaryM
05-23-2008, 08:42 PM
You don't use a SNAKE to clear a toilet, you use a Closet Auger (http://homerepair.about.com/od/termsaf/g/gloss_auger.htm).

Tapioca Dextrin
05-23-2008, 09:46 PM
If a tooth will dissolve when left in a can of cola overnight

It doesn't (http://www.snopes.com/cokelore/tooth.asp)

Spectre of Pithecanthropus
05-24-2008, 02:39 PM
FTR it seems to have dissolved, as of this morning, sufficiently to allow the toilet to flush normally.

Pixilated
05-24-2008, 02:45 PM
Whenever I run across a clogged toilet I've downed a couple cans of coke (or dr pepper) & let it sit for a couple of hours then flush. It's always worked for me.

KlondikeGeoff
05-24-2008, 03:43 PM
FTR it seems to have dissolved, as of this morning, sufficiently to allow the toilet to flush normally.

And a nice clean toilet it is, too. :D

Justin_Bailey
05-24-2008, 04:41 PM
My uncle the plumber told me to use white vinegar on the clogged stuff in my toilet (it was grit and dirt that was on the toilet when we moved in).

You empty the bowl, pour in a ton of white vinegar and let it sit for 6-8 hours. Then flush. Anything should be dissolved and the way should be clear.

diggleblop
05-24-2008, 05:00 PM
Think soap is bad? My Mom recently accidently flushed a wash cloth down the toilet ! Thing couldn't be snaked out or anything. Anyways, after about a month of flushing, the toilet started acting right again. No probs since.

I would turn the water off in back of the toilet and then just take the whole toilet off the wax ring it's sitting on and try getting it out that way. But that's me.

Fear Itself
05-24-2008, 05:25 PM
My Mom recently accidently flushed a wash cloth down the toilet ! A washcloth? Child's play, says I! When I was 15 years old, I worked at a YMCA camp, and one of my jobs was cleaning the bathrooms. Those little monsters would flush anything not nailed down. Some of the more creative included pine cones and light bulbs, carefully shoved deep into the siphon. Another bitch to remove was a roll of toilet paper that had swollen up until it was stuck tight; I had to dig that one out by hand.

Student Driver
05-24-2008, 05:52 PM
Yeah, well...

...try fishing out a still-vibrating motorized dildo out of a toilet.

Yeah, I don't miss working at Goodwill.

VanillaGorilla
05-24-2008, 05:56 PM
A washcloth? Child's play, says I! When I was 15 years old, I worked at a YMCA camp, and one of my jobs was cleaning the bathrooms. Those little monsters would flush anything not nailed down. Some of the more creative included pine cones and light bulbs, carefully shoved deep into the siphon. Another bitch to remove was a roll of toilet paper that had swollen up until it was stuck tight; I had to dig that one out by hand.

Pine cones and light bulbs? Ha! When I was younger I would have been GLAD to pick that stuff out of the toilet. My dad used to flush live bears and used cars down the toilet, and we, the kids, had to try and get it out. He did it every day, and it took us FOUR days to get one thing out. We had no tools to use, and dad had broken our arms, so we had to use our teeth!

WarmNPrickly
05-24-2008, 06:21 PM
My uncle the plumber told me to use white vinegar on the clogged stuff in my toilet

I wonder how this would work on soap. It could work because it protonates the soap and causes it to separate out, but I strongly suspect that acids are going to do a lot of nothing. Bases like draino won't do anything either. I think the best bet is to leave the toilet running until it clears out, but I don't know how the water bill would be on that. Hot water will be more effective. Maybe if once every couple of hours you dumped some hot water in. Eventually it will dissolve. I'm sure you've seen soap that's been sitting in a wet soapdish for a while. Soap will dissolve.

mangeorge
05-24-2008, 07:00 PM
I would suggest the first thing to try would be to reach in and try to grab what ever is in there with your fingers. Before trying repeated flushes.
But, you seem to have gotten it.
Peace,
mangeorge.

Nametag
05-24-2008, 09:40 PM
Ordinary drain cleaner is mostly sodium hydroxide (lye), and works on grease clogs by reacting with the fatty acids to form SOAP. Soap, being water soluble, really shouldn't be seen as a long-term clog problem in the first place, as the OP has discovered. Had the issue come to my attention sooner, I'd have recommended time and a bit of hot water.

don't ask
05-24-2008, 09:58 PM
You just leave any toilet blockage overnight and the toilet fairy comes and clears it. I just wish there was a dirty dishes fairy.

Civil Guy
05-24-2008, 10:17 PM
What I'm trying just now myself (a shower clog - too much hair running down the drain - but that's another problem) is some stuff I got from the local 'natural foods' grocery. Says it works by bacterial action. Says it will take awhile, like overnight. Any comments?

WarmNPrickly
05-25-2008, 12:01 AM
You just leave any toilet blockage overnight and the toilet fairy comes and clears it.

Yes, but you have to sleep with the toilet under your pillow. Believe me, it's really awkward when your married.

The Tao's Revenge
05-25-2008, 12:23 AM
This is why they tell you not to drop the soap in prison.

Santo Rugger
05-25-2008, 12:58 AM
Just dump a whole bunch of bacon grease down the toilet. The soap will bind to the grease, and it'll get rid of the soap in no time. Next up: How to remove bacon grease from bathroom pipes?

:cool:

Harmonious Discord
05-25-2008, 08:01 AM
This wouldn't have been an issue if you used Ivory soap. Before somebody asks, Ivory soap floats. I bet they don't list it as one advantage of using their floating soap though.

Air line tubing and an aquarium pump should dissolve the soap. Think of all the pretty bubbles that will be all over the floor. :D

USAEagle
05-25-2008, 08:14 AM
Pine cones and light bulbs? Ha! When I was younger I would have been GLAD to pick that stuff out of the toilet. My dad used to flush live bears and used cars down the toilet, and we, the kids, had to try and get it out. He did it every day, and it took us FOUR days to get one thing out. We had no tools to use, and dad had broken our arms, so we had to use our teeth!

____________________

Bears and Cars? I would have been happy to fish bears and cars out of our toilet. WHen I was two, my dad flushed the Queen Mary down the toilet three nights running, broke my arms, and made me fish it out. Then I had to clean t' toilet with me tongue, before getting up for work at Sunset at the crack of dawn to work in the toilet paper recycling plant.

____________________

Ah you had it lucky. At least you had a toilet. When I was a kid we had to go to the toilet in the middle of the Freeway, without a torch!....but when you try to tell kids things these days, they just don't believe you!

Myglaren
05-25-2008, 08:17 AM
You Americans seem to have seriously complicated toilets. All this "Wax Ring" business seems really OTT.

Our toilet bowls take around 5~10 minutes to remove and replacement is a simple reversal of removal. In most cases you don't need to turn off the water, although it is advisable, just in case.

Close-coupled toilets take a bit longer as the cistern has to come out too, but even then it is only a 15 minute job. These usually have a service valve in the supply pipe, just below the cistern, so you can shut off the water there and leave the rest of the house unaffected.

Never a particularly pleasant job as removal is invariably due to something horrible stuck in the tubes :( but better unpleasant and simple than unpleasant and difficult.

USAEagle
05-25-2008, 08:19 AM
Pine cones and light bulbs? Ha! When I was younger I would have been GLAD to pick that stuff out of the toilet. My dad used to flush live bears and used cars down the toilet, and we, the kids, had to try and get it out. He did it every day, and it took us FOUR days to get one thing out. We had no tools to use, and dad had broken our arms, so we had to use our teeth!

____________________

Bears and Cars? I would have been happy to fish bears and cars out of our toilet. WHen I was two, my dad flushed the Queen Mary down the toilet three nights running, broke my arms, and made me fish it out. Then I had to clean t' toilet with me tongue, before getting up for work at Sunset at the crack of dawn to work in the toilet paper recycling plant.

____________________

Ah you had it lucky. At least you had a toilet. When I was a kid we had to go to the toilet in the middle of the Freeway, without a torch!....but when you try to tell kids things these days, they just don't believe you!

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USAEagle
05-25-2008, 08:21 AM
Think you had it bad? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqNGhcdtMbc)

Annie-Xmas
05-26-2008, 08:16 AM
Ordinary drain cleaner is mostly sodium hydroxide (lye), and works on grease clogs by reacting with the fatty acids to form SOAP. Soap, being water soluble, really shouldn't be seen as a long-term clog problem in the first place, as the OP has discovered. Had the issue come to my attention sooner, I'd have recommended time and a bit of hot water.

If you have ever seen a length of pipe clogged by soap that was made when someone used drain cleaner with lye on a grease clog, you would change that tune quickly. It looked like black-green cement and smelled horrible.

Do not use drain cleaners ever. I would recommend heated vinegar to remove soap.

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