How to childproof your plumbing

Kids’ curiosity makes them do all kinds of things that can make you laugh, cringe, or scream “STOP THAT!” At the screaming end of the scale are things like flushing their toys down the toilet. It’s the kind of behavior that you want to teach them not to do as soon as possible, but sometimes the curiosity gets the better of them. 

If you have young kids in your house, then read on to find out how to keep your plumbing safe and operational.

What to do about a flushed toy

You turned your back for a second and suddenly there’s water all over the bathroom floor. A flushed toy might not always be this disastrous depending on the size of it, but it can easily lead to a clog. Place towels down if your toilet has overflown or you think it might be at risk of doing so.

What to do next depends on the situation. Large toys are likely to get stuck before being flushed, so you might be able to reach in an dislodge the toy and pull it out (remember to wear gloves!). If not, then a plunger or an auger might be able to do the trick. If you can’t easily get the toy out or fix the clog with a plunger, then we’d advise calling an emergency plumber to take care of the clog. 

If you’ve never used an auger before, then it might be better leaving this task to the professionals. And if you don’t have an auger, don’t try using something similar in its place as the wrong tools can damage your plumbing. 

To avoid disasters like this from happening in the future, it’s good to take some measures to childproof your plumbing. Here are a few ideas:

  • Child locks – You can place a child lock on the toilet seat so that they won’t be able to lift it. This is especially recommended for toddlers who haven’t started potty training yet. As well as the risk of flushing toys, your child might also be curious enough to drink toilet water, which could make them ill.
  • Drain covers – As well as the toilet, your child might also try dropping smaller items down the drain of the shower or sink. This can cause clogs that could be even harder to resolve than the toilet. Mesh drain covers ensure that holes aren’t big enough to fit things through.
  • Teach them what not to flush – Once your children are old enough to understand, you should explain to them what they shouldn’t put down the toilet. As well as the obvious ones like toys, baby wipes and make-up wipes, cotton swabs, paper towels, and feminine hygiene products should be put in the bin and not flushed away.

If you have a plumbing disaster in your home, call your local plumber for Clemmons, Winston Salem, Lewisville, and beyond.