My sister came to visit from California this weekend. While the taxi to the airport was waiting downstairs, she misplaced her LG flip phone. (It's an ancient model, I don't even know which one.) We frantically searched the Robischon house for it to no avail. Not long after, the toilet backed up. This was during a party, so I figured the events were unrelated and that someone had flushed something nasty down. But no amount of plunging seemed to solve the problem. The flush would round third base, but it just wasn't crossing the plate with that satisfying swoosh. And where did that cellphone disappear to? The mystery began to unravel when someone remembered seeing the phone on top of the toilet tank. The plumber came the next day and said there was something plastic or metal stuck in there—a kids' toy maybe?
Want to know what it takes to remove a cellphone from inside of a toilet? Read on...
After the plunging, and dumping some "pipe safe" product called RidX down there, you ride the snake. But the snake hits something hard, and that's when you know it's trouble.
The next step is to dump liquid laundry detergent down the drain. This method has worked before for Luis, our amazing handyman. Tide works, whatever you've got handy. The idea is that you might be able to lubricate the phone enough to dislodge it. So, dump some detergent in there, flush. And then dump some more right near the end of the flush. Then take the snake and roto with all your might. Keep jamming it in there deep. Push hard enough and you might even break the object enough to send it full fathom five. But we had no such luck.
The only choice left is to unbolt the toilet from the floor. Now things get messy. Dirty water everywhere. And you get a peek at the hole that carries away all your waste. It's not pretty—as you can see.
The work is not done yet. Once you've got that porcelain beauty on its side, the object is still stuck up in there. Luis didn't believe that it was a cellphone. He'd never seen nor heard of such a thing happening before. So he ran the snake back in there again. Did some work with his hands and finally the phone kerplunked out the bowl and onto the floor. He lodged the phone back into the toilet pipe for the winning picture.
The phone held up pretty well considering the beating it took. Don't you think?