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How to Shut Off Water for an Overflowing Toilet

An overflowing toilet can cause a lot of stress and potential water damage. Here’s a step-

by-step guide to quickly shut off the water supply and prevent further overflow.





Step 1: Stop the Water Flow


1. Lift the Tank Lid:

• Carefully remove the lid from the toilet tank and place it somewhere safe.

2. Push Down the Flapper:

• The flapper is a rubber valve at the bottom of the tank. Pushing it down will stop water from flowing into the bowl.


Step 2: Locate the Shut-Off Valve


1. Find the Shut-Off Valve:

• The shut-off valve is usually located on the wall behind the toilet near the base.

2. Turn Off the Valve:

• Turn the valve clockwise (righty-tighty) to shut off the water supply to the toilet. If the valve is stuck, use a cloth for a better grip or a wrench for leverage.


Step 3: Prevent Further Overflow


1. Lift the Float:

• Inside the tank, you will see a float attached to a rod. Lifting the float will stop the tank from filling up.

• Secure the float in place using a piece of string or a small stick if necessary.


Step 4: Clear the Blockage


1. Use a Plunger:

• Place a plunger over the toilet drain and push down firmly several times to try and clear the blockage.

2. Use a Toilet Auger:

• If the plunger doesn’t work, use a toilet auger (also known as a plumbing snake) to reach deeper blockages. Insert the auger into the drain and turn the handle to break up or retrieve the blockage.


Step 5: Clean Up the Overflow


1. Mop Up Excess Water:

• Use towels or a mop to clean up any water that has spilled onto the floor to prevent water damage.

2. Sanitize the Area:

• Clean the area with a disinfectant cleaner to ensure it is properly sanitized.


Step 6: Turn the Water Back On


1. Slowly Open the Shut-Off Valve:

• Once the blockage is cleared, turn the shut-off valve counterclockwise (lefty-loosey) to restore the water supply to the toilet.

2. Check for Proper Operation:

• Flush the toilet to ensure it is working correctly and that there are no leaks.


If the toilet continues to overflow or you cannot locate the shut-off valve, it may be time to call or file a maintenence request .

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