How to Unclog a Toilet with Dish Soap

How to unclog a toilet with dish soap is a new idea to us.  We decided to test it out and see if it worked and if we would recommend it to our readers. 

Does dish soap really help unclog a toilet?  Read below to find out! 

how to unclog a toilet with dish soap
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How to Unclog A Toilet with Dish Soap 

Desperate times call for desperate measures.  If you don’t have a toilet auger or a plunger and your toilet is clogged, what can you do?  You don’t want to spent a ton of money on emergency plumbing services, or call your friends randomly.  One of the solution you might have come across in your internet search is using dish soap to make that clog slip right down the toilet. 

But, does it actually work or are you wasting your time and your dish soap?  Let’s discuss. 

How to Unclog A Toilet with Dish Soap: Supplies 

You’re going to need 2 things to get your toilet unclogged with dish soap:  very hot water and dish soap. 

How Long Does Dish Soap Take to Unclog a Toilet? 

It takes about 15-20 minutes from start to finish for dish soap to unclog your toilet.  

How to Unclog a Toilet with Dawn Dish Soap (or Any Dish Soap) 

Pour a bunch of dish soap (Dawn Dish Soap or any kind) into your toilet bowl while you get your water very hot.  Slowly pour the hot water into your toilet bowl so you don’t crack the cold porcelain or melt the toilet ring.  Then set your timer and wait for your toilet to unclog.  If you are worried about your toilet overflowing if you flush it, then you really should wait and see.  The water level should go down by itself as the hot water works to open up your pipes.   

Myth Versus Facts: How Does it Work?

You’ll be surprised to learn that it’s not actually the dish soap that is unclogging your toilet.  Sure, dish soap can cut through grease and grime…in the commercials.  But, this grease and grime is nothing in comparison to what’s built up in your toilet pipes.  The only way to remove years of built up gunk is with a toilet auger. 

Now, when you combine the HOT water with the soap and wait a bit, suddenly your toilet starts running clear.  Why is that?  That’s because the HOT WATER dissolved enough of the grease and grime in your pipes to let some of the water through.  It has nothing to do with the dish soap. 

How to Unclog a Toilet with Dish Soap: Not a Permanent Solution 

Unclogging a toilet with dish soap (actually just HOT water) will get your toilet running again in the short term.  But, there is still a ton of build up in your pipes at all the joints at elbows.  There could even be something stuck in your pipes.  The only thing that will get stuff out of your pipes and also remove gunk build up is a toilet auger.  You don’t need to hire a plumber with a toilet auger.  You can buy them online or at your local hardware store and do it yourself.   

Regular maintenance on your pipes with your auger will prevent any build up from causing clogs at the most embarrassing times or at 3am! 


How to unclog a toilet with dish soap is a MYTH.  Follow our expert advice above and JUST use hot water to get those pipes running fast and cheaply.  Save your dish soap.  Buy a toilet auger instead for the next time your clog returns.