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mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 4:47 p.m.

Here's the scenario. I have a LOVELY 20 month old son named Gibson. (can you see where this is going yet?) Gibson LOVES to play in water. Bath time is his favorite because of all the splashes you make when you throw things into the water. Being a precocious little scamp, he has discovered that things splash when you throw them into the toilet! Lucky me! I've found a cell phone, an unused insulin pen from my wifes gestational diabeetus, a bottle of hair product, countless pieces of silverware, among other things. I keep box of rubber gloves next to the toilet for this very reason. And up until now, i've been very fortunate in that I have been able to find and remove every offending object prior to flushing. Until......

My son discovered my stash of nail polish. (Don't hate. Nail polish makes for awesome colors, and if you get ADD and bored like me, you use it to paint the badges of various vehicles.) I am not 100% certain, but I suspect the little charmer had deposited one of these bottles in the toilet, that went unnoticed until post flush. I heard a clacking noise that sounded an awful lot like glass on porcelain when I went to flush. Post mortem is that the toilet flushes, but drains VERY slowly, and if flushed more than once in rapid succession, will not hesitate to vomit its contents all over my bathroom floor. Now it is a possibility that the toilet is clogged due to my wifes overuse of toilet paper. (seriously. She mummifies her hand prior to wiping. It's bizarre.) But you probably didn't need to know that. I have recently dumped an entire bottle of drano down said toilet, and am going to follow it with a pot of boiling water, as soon as the water boils. I have plunged the ever-loving E36 M3 out of it, though I admit my plunger is a normal one, not the accordian type that will suck a golf ball through a garden hose. Basically, if it's a routine clog, it's cleaner than a colonic with a fire hose. HOWEVER- if it's a bottle of nail polish, just how screwed am I? Is there a GRM solution that does not involve removal of the offending toilet? I'd flush some waterproof fireworks down there, but A- it's a rental, B- I'm out of fireworks, and C- I know what happens when you actually do that. Thoughts?

mazdeuce
mazdeuce Dork
5/1/13 5:21 p.m.

Has the adult in the house with the smallest hands reached as far into the innards as they can yet. I'm always amazed at how much farther I can reach than I can see. Then it's time for some probing. You're not looking to hook at this point just to see if you can feel anything out of place. If you can find it, you can try to hook it.
If it's truly stuck, the toilet will probably need to come off in the end. I had friends that lost a toilet this way. The offending object was so stuck that it couldn't be reached from either end. They learned how to shut the bathroom door after that one.

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 5:26 p.m.
mazdeuce wrote: Has the adult in the house with the smallest hands reached as far into the innards as they can yet. I'm always amazed at how much farther I can reach than I can see. Then it's time for some probing. You're not looking to hook at this point just to see if you can feel anything out of place. If you can find it, you can try to hook it. If it's truly stuck, the toilet will probably need to come off in the end. I had friends that lost a toilet this way. The offending object was so stuck that it couldn't be reached from either end. They learned how to shut the bathroom door after that one.

Wife and I have very similarly sized hands, and I have done some digging. I couldn't feel anything. I don't really want to try again as there is boiling hot water in it as well as industrial strength toilet cleaner. Wimpy gloves will not suffice. I think my next venture will be to lowesdepot for a toilet device of some sort, to see if I can rectify the situation.

Cone_Junky
Cone_Junky Dork
5/1/13 5:26 p.m.

Worthwhile investment-

I don't see how you could do anything but remove the toilet at this point.

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 5:29 p.m.

Ontopic- Just how stupid would I be to fashion some sort of seal on the end of ye olde Shop-Vac professional and try and suck that sumbitch out again? I'd use the Dyson- but I suspect SWMBO would be severely angry at me for ruining the vaccuum suctioning out our toilet.

ransom
ransom GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
5/1/13 5:29 p.m.

An excuse to get one of these?

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 5:36 p.m.
ransom wrote: An excuse to get one of these?

I thought about that, actually. Too bad shipping would take longer than I really have to figure this out.

Josh
Josh SuperDork
5/1/13 5:47 p.m.

I was going to suggest a drain snake, but I think ransom has the right idea in using this as an excuse to purchase an otherwise awesome tool. Just remember if you get the temptation to use the camera to investigate the inside of your own throat that you should probably do that before you stick it down the toilet.

I can't imagine you'd break anything with the shop-vac. Not much to break on the inside of a toilet drain. If it's stuck in the trap a human with intact bones is unlikely to be able to pull it out by hand. Removing a toilet isn't all that hard though. Wax rings are a pain in the ass though. It costs like a whole 4 dollars extra, but I much prefer these, and once I install one I can take the toilet on and off as often as I want.

http://www.fernco.com/plumbing/wax-free-toilet-seal

Secretariata
Secretariata Reader
5/1/13 6:24 p.m.
Josh wrote: Removing a toilet isn't all that hard though. Wax rings are a pain in the ass though. It costs like a whole 4 dollars extra, but I much prefer these, and once I install one I can take the toilet on and off as often as I want. http://www.fernco.com/plumbing/wax-free-toilet-seal

Thank you for showing me this device! We are planning to redo the floors in our bathrooms soon and I was wondering if there is a better solution than the 100+ year old wax ring technology. Not that old technology is necessarily bad, but the few times I've removed a toilet, I could not get the wax ring to seal properly on the first attempt.

akamcfly
akamcfly HalfDork
5/1/13 6:32 p.m.

wax ring is a couple bucks

shut off the water valve and hold down the flush handle until the tank is drained.

undo the two flange nuts and pull the toilet - have old manky towels ready.

Lay the toilet on its side and look up the drain hole. My guess is it's lodged in the internal "s trap". You may be able to push it out from the bottom in a LOT less time than trying to hook it from the bowl side.

Also, relaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaax. Unless you have a severely berked sewer line, there will be no yuckies in the poopy hole

Wax rings are ucky, but they work best to seal the flange. Beeswax - they smell great!

Don't forget to wash up after, Mr. Poopyhands!

You can do eeeet!

failboat
failboat SuperDork
5/1/13 6:44 p.m.

+1. removing and installing a toilet was wayyyy easier than I had expected. it literally is drain and sop up all the water you can, remove a few bolts, and you lift it right up. easy job.

we had the same exact same thing happen. wife has a E36 M3 load of makeup products littering the small excuse for a countertop in the bathroom. one small tube of makeup got knocked off the counter and fell into the toilet. I am not sure but I am guessing she probably tried to flush it instead of fishing it out. the edges of it got caught on the wax ring, subsequent flushes and toilet paper got caught on the makeup tube. had to pull the toilet to unclog.

Curmudgeon
Curmudgeon MegaDork
5/1/13 7:02 p.m.

I've, er, Al Bundy-ed a few in my time. Does that count?

Yeah, all this is pretty much on the money. When you drain the tank, turn the water off at the wall then flush. Then use a big sponge to get the remaining water out of the tank.

I used wax rings on the last two I reseated here, it's simple and proven technology. They need to be warm to work though, I once tried to seat one when it was 55 degrees in the house and the damn thing like to never conformed even with my corpulent self perched on the seat.

You might also get a metal (not plastic) drain 'snake' and see if you can break the bottle up or snag it and pull it out. Then teach young Mr Splash that he will be crawling in after the next object he throws in there.

tr8todd
tr8todd HalfDork
5/1/13 7:21 p.m.

You might be able to pull it out with a toilet auger(not a drain snake). If you can spin it past the bottle, yank the handle up quickly. The ball on the end will pull the bottle up with it. If that doesn't work after two or three tries, pull the toilet , flip it on it's side and push the bottle back out the way it went in. You will need a new wax ring and probably a new set of Johni bolts. Have a roll of paper towels, a trash bag, and some spray cleaner handy. Lay some news paper on the floor where you plan on placing the toilet. Use a putty knife to remove the old wax seal.

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 7:32 p.m.

Welp, I'll send the mrs mndsm after a toilet auger, and if that doesn't work, I suspect I'll be pulling my toilet tomorrow. It needs new caulk around the base anyhow.

Josh
Josh SuperDork
5/1/13 8:02 p.m.
mndsm wrote: Welp, I'll send the mrs mndsm after a toilet auger, and if that doesn't work, I suspect I'll be pulling my toilet tomorrow. It needs new caulk around the base anyhow.

Toilets that are installed correctly shouldn't need caulk around the base (except for cosmetic purposes of course). Personally I would prefer to know if my seal is leaking rather than being oblivious as the water stays hidden behind the caulk and rots out my floor sheathing instead.

TRoglodyte
TRoglodyte Dork
5/1/13 8:05 p.m.

Have you tried one of those springy claw thingy pick up tools? has a hypodermic type plunger on one end and when you push it claws open on the other end. Maybe?

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 8:09 p.m.

In reply to TRoglodyte:

That was a thought. I'm not sure how well i'd do grabbing it blind.

TRoglodyte
TRoglodyte Dork
5/1/13 8:11 p.m.

Carnival game, sometimes you get lucky!

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 8:15 p.m.
Josh wrote:
mndsm wrote: Welp, I'll send the mrs mndsm after a toilet auger, and if that doesn't work, I suspect I'll be pulling my toilet tomorrow. It needs new caulk around the base anyhow.
Toilets that are installed correctly shouldn't need caulk around the base (except for cosmetic purposes of course). Personally I would prefer to know if my seal is leaking rather than being oblivious as the water stays hidden behind the caulk and rots out my floor sheathing instead.

Rental. Not my call. Don't wanna call maitenance. I'm OCD about people in my place.

SVreX
SVreX MegaDork
5/1/13 8:32 p.m.

I'm not butting in to your business, but you may want to consider locking up the nail polish from the 20 month old.

Not sure what you are using, but some of them are toxic.

Josh
Josh SuperDork
5/1/13 8:50 p.m.
mndsm wrote: Rental. Not my call. Don't wanna call maitenance. I'm OCD about people in my place.

I'm a landlord, and I have to say I'd be a lot more upset with a tenant trying to fix something himself and hide that fact from me than I would be with the initial problem, because I'd rather have the chance to make sure whatever repair being done was done correctly. Not that I think you'll have any problem fixing it, or that too many other landlords feel the way I do about that.

SVreX
SVreX MegaDork
5/1/13 9:15 p.m.
mndsm wrote: Rental. Not my call. Don't wanna call maitenance. I'm OCD about people in my place.

Hope your landlord's not OCD about people working on HIS place.

Re-seating a toilet is not hard, but I have seen it done wrong, leading to a rotten subfloor. It may be worth the call to to the maintenance dept just so you would not be liable for any leaks or related issues.

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 9:27 p.m.

If it gets that far I probably will.

As far as the nail polish, it was locked up. He can't get the bottles open, but damn if he can't get into damn near anything cabinet wise within his reach.

moparman76_69
moparman76_69 Dork
5/1/13 9:53 p.m.

Turn off the water, flush, then run the wet/dry vac hose down to see if it will get the bottle. I doubt it made it past the bowl.

mndsm
mndsm PowerDork
5/1/13 10:43 p.m.

UPDATE! I was partially right about the TP thing, and WAY off base with the nail polish. As it turns out, we ran out of toilet paper. So being the resourceful types we are, baby wipes got involved. MAN that is a clean you don't get with a normal piece of tissue. HOWEVER- they don't flush so good. After pulling a giant mass of foulness the likes I shall not soon forget from the aforementioned commode, she flushes like a champ, and is ready for Cinco de Mayo shenanigans. Toilet auger is a wonderful invention.

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