In general, most hotel rooms do not have plungers. And this is for a good reason, one of which delves on sanitation. The other primary reason is cost. The rest could be because it can cause liabilities.
But with hotel rooms not having plungers, you should not think the property does not have anything of that sort ultimately.
Let me assure you; hotels have plungers kept somewhere. There is no reason for the hotel to have plungers in every room. But what they have is something they can use for emergency purposes; or when you need it.
In a nutshell, one main reason for hotels not to have plungers in every room is because of its cost. It costs too much to have them everywhere. Plus, the chances of clogs happening are too slim for them to use it that much.
All you must do for clogged toilets is call the front desk. They will just run the plunger right into your room. Problem solved.
Cost is just one of the main reasons. Aside from the price, there is a horde of other reasons why most hotels do not keep plungers in every room.
Here they are.
It may sound too gross to steal a plunger. But with people nowadays, you can never be too sure.
Hotels and motels in the US see the most significant number of stealing every day. And you can never imagine the kind of items guests usually bring home with them.
While some can bring home the usual towel and pillowcases, some can go as far as getting home the duvet. Some can even bring home comforters, utensils, and a lot more.
And so, if you tell me that it would be impossible for guests to steal a plunger, I won’t believe you much.
People can steal whatever it is that they want to steal. And yes, that includes plungers.
I will no longer get into much detail on how we get clogged toilets.
But if we have clogged toilets, we use plungers. And if it so happens that a hotel room uses the plungers a lot, there is a need for the hotel to clean the plunger regularly.
But is it clean enough? How sure are you?
No matter how much you trust a hotel, its cleanliness is something you should do not always trust 100%.
And if they keep plungers in each room, sanitation-wise, it would not be a good picture.
Besides, it won’t look great having a plunger kept right there.
The Damage to Property
Out of the billions of people globally, just a tiny percentage is composed of plumbers.
Well, good if you are a plumber.
But not all hotel guests are plumbers.
And if it so happens that a hotel guest gets a clogged toilet, most would not be too experienced on how to use the plunger. Most would not be too familiar with what to do to deal with the plumbing issues.
In efforts to unclog the toilet, there is the possibility of the guest damaging hotel property.
They would be liable in the end. And I’m pretty sure; as a hotel guest, you would not be too welcoming with the thought of paying up for damaged property.
Let’s go back to the not-all-of-us-are-plumbers reason.
Because not all of us are plumbers, we don’t always know how to use a plunger.
Insisting on using the plunger can result in injuries.
And I know you cannot afford an injury when all you wanted was a staycation.
List of Contents
What do you do when you clog a toilet in a hotel room?
There are a few things you can consider. Pour water from a bucket. Let the water down. Flush a few more times. Use a wire hanger to unclog the toilet. Repeat.
When faced with a clogged toilet in a hotel room, you may or may not take things into your own hands.
I highly suggest you talk to the front desk for immediate assistance.
But in case, for some reason, you decided not to, here are a few remedies that might work.
Subside and Flush
First, let the water subside. Once it does, try to flush again. You can keep on doing this a few more times.
Whatever you flushed down there may have already disintegrated in the process. In some cases, this would work without a need for a plunger or calling for assistance.
The Ice Bucket
If the first step does not work after numerous flushing, you can fill an ice bucket with water. If not the ice bucket, the better option would be a garbage can.
Fill the ice bucket (or garbage can) with water. Dump it all in the toilet.
The water from a garbage can (or ice bucket) puts more pressure and force on the siphon. This manner is way better than flushing.
The Wire Hanger
If you are unsuccessful with the first two options, try getting a wire hanger.
Unwind the wire hanger and try to inch it way past the clog.
Try to unclog the toilet using the wire hanger. Then flush.
If these three do not work, call room service.
Hotels have staff that is highly trained to deal with these problems. And remember that this is one of the main reasons you stay in a hotel.
You do not always have to do all the work yourself.
Let them take care of these things.
This reason is why you are paying for their services.
Once unclogged, don’t forget to tip!
Why do people use plungers?
A plunger (or a force cup) helps plumbers clear blockages in pipes as well as in drains. The cup, attached to a shaft, is usually made of plastic or wood. It has a rubber suction cup.
Plungers came into the picture around the end of the 19th century. Thanks to John Hawley, the plungers were finally born.
At the time, they called plungers as vent clearer. They marketed these as force cups.
The plungers that we see these days are easy to use.
Push down the cup against the opening of the drain. You can press hard into the drain or force the air inside. Push down until you see the rubber cup flattened. Then, try to pull out.
It should create a vacuum that pulls whatever is blocking the drain up. This method usually works by dislodging waste material from the clogged drain.
While easy to use, plungers can sometimes cause damages to the toilet. Sometimes, it can be slippery to injure the user.
Be careful there.
How do plungers work in a sink?
Plungers use the powers of hydraulic suction and compression. Pulling the plunger causes a pull of the water in the drain—the act of pushing the plunger down forces the water downward. Doing so can loosen the clog.
I’m pretty sure you agree that plumbing problems are just some of the worst around.
But no matter how bad it is, it is a problem almost all of us can solve.
Well, there are more complicated plumbing problems. But there are easier ones to solve. And before calling the experts, you might as well try your luck. It might work as long as you are careful enough to avoid injuries and damages to the toilet.
Most of the time, the causes of the clogging of sinks are hair and soap scum accumulated over time. With toilets, it can be other materials like toilet paper, sanitary napkins, and a lot more.
It happens at the curved section of the pipe. It is always directly below the sink’s opening if you look down there. And most of the time, these clogs are those a plunger can solve.
The first thing to do is make sure you have the right plunger.
And the easiest way to determine is to check the cup.
The plunger you use for sinks is the standard cup style.
They are perfect for sinks, tubs, and shower clogs.
The dome is shallow. The bottom rim is flat.
The one you use for your toilet is the closet plunger. The dome is way taller than the one you use for your sink.
Drain Plunger vs. Drain Snake
Aside from the ordinary plunger we see in the market today, there is another hand tool that clears drain clogs.
This tool is the drain snake. Sometimes, people call it the drain auger.
The drain snake is one you use for deeply lodged clogs. Homeowners usually have both tools. But experts advise using the plunger first. If this option does not fly, you can use the drain snake.
Drain plungers can sometimes slip if you are not careful enough.
Generally, a plunger is not that dangerous. But aside from slipping, it can also harm your health. While using the plunger, sometimes, dirty and bacteria-infested drops of drain water may go into your skin. Sometimes, it can even go to your face.
As such, it would always be advisable to wear eye protection.
Use gloves as well.
How to Use Plungers
As mentioned earlier, it is the upward and downward motion of the water that a plunger makes that can dislodge materials and unclog the drain.
The material may break free from the clog after pushing and pulling the plunger a few times. Sometimes, the water itself can disintegrate the material.
The water finally carries it down the drain system.
But what are the steps in using a plunger? What things should you remember?
Here are a few of them.
The Drain Stopper
Sometimes, the solution can be so simple.
When it’s your bathroom sink (or your bathtub), check the pop-up stopper. Clean it off.
Sometimes, this alone can solve the issue.
Indeed, there is a lot of hair and soap accumulated there.
For you to get into the hard-to-reach parts of the stopper, use pliers or a metal coat hanger. Just bend the hanger into a hook. Grab hair from the stopper.
If this does not work, proceed to use the plunger.
The Overflow Opening
Before plunging, it is essential to seal the drainpipe first.
You can use a wet rag to do this.
The overflow opening is at the top of the sink rim. Sometimes, it can also be on the front wall of the bathtub.
Blocking this will be able to seal the drain. It would then allow the plunger to create the suction and the necessary compression.
Without these two, plunging would be of little use.
To use the plunger, place the cup over the drain’s opening. Make sure that it covers the opening completely.
Turn on the faucet. The water should be able to cover the plunger’s cup at least.
Now, it is time to pump.
Thrust it up and down.
Ensure to maintain the seal between the plunger and the sink surface while doing this action.
While making the pumping motion, you would feel when the clogs start to loosen. You will find out that it is easier to pump this time.
After about six plunger pumps, pull it away from the drain opening.
Check if you can see the water draining away. See if it worked. Because if it does drain away, consider the issue solved. If not, repeat the process.
Now, when do you give up.
Use the snake drain if the clog is still there after several attempts.
Once you feel the clog getting looser, make sure to run hot water for a few more minutes.
Hot water can also dissolve soap scum. It should be able to flush the materials down the drain. It should also prevent new clogs from forming.
How to Keep the Plunger Clean
Cleaning the plunger is simple.
All you must do is rinse it off after use. Dry the plunger. Then store in a dry place.
Do not ever rub Vaseline or any grease on the plunger’s rubber cup. It should protect the rubber and make it last longer. You can use a silicone-based lubricant to wipe the rubber cup.
Replacing the Drain Plunger
In time, the rubber cup can get old. It can look cracked.
When it does appear cracked, replace it.
A cracked rubber cup will not make a tight seal against the basin in the drain. When this happens, it is no longer as effective.
Time to buy a new one, then!