Homemade Toilet Snakes

If you want to make your own toilet snake, you do have several options. Some plumbers recommend steering clear of anything that's not specifically made to unclog plumbing, but if you don't want to pony up for a pricey professional snake or auger, try making your own.

It's risky business to make your own snake, so proceed with caution.

Is Your Toilet Expendable?

The question isn't posed to make you laugh – it's a warning against too much innovation when you decide to tackle a project like making your own toilet snake. Professional plumbers have more tall (and sad) tales about failed homemade snake projects than they do about successful ones, so think through your options and try solutions that you may already have at hand. A plunger that's positioned expertly so it creates a tight seal between the rubber rim and the porcelain may make all the difference. It's worth several tries.

Homemade Liquid Snakes

Whether you have none in the house or you are dead set against using toxic chemicals, try whipping up some safe homemade liquid snake. Five tbsp. of any liquid dish soap left standing in the bowl before adding boiling water and followed by a plunger may be all you need to take care the clog. Baking soda chased by vinegar may also do the trick.

The Wire Hanger Snake

Many professionals and non-professionals alike balk at the mention of wire hangers. You can certainly bend a wire hanger into a long probe and feed it down your toilet drain. Some have even threaded the end of a hanger with a brush to create a one-of-a-kind homemade snake. This is another proceed-at-your-own risk solution since wire hangers shoved into drains have the potential to permanently scratch and mar porcelain.

Convert a Dryer Vent Brush Into a Toilet Snake

A 10-foot dryer vent brush has the potential to solve your clogging problems. Dryer vent cleaning tools push through contorted turns and bends. The brush at the end of your dryer vent won't harm the porcelain because the bristles, while not soft, are manufactured to inflict minimal damage on dryer venting lines that are much more fragile than a toilet drain. You will, of course, have to replace your dryer vent brush in the future, but if you're smart, sanitize the one you converted and keep it around just in case.