heating and AC, plumbing & electric
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heating and AC, plumbing & electric 479.900.0784
November 9, 2022

Toilet Plunger vs. Sink Plunger - What Kind of Plunger Should I Use?

You might be using the wrong toilet plunger and it could be making life a whole lot more difficult. While this isn’t life-changing for some, for others it could help just knowing there are different plungers for different kinds of clogs. In fact, there are THREE different types. Here’s what you need to know:

Traditional Red Sink Plungers

Sink plungers are the plunger that typically comes to mind when you’re needing to unclog a toilet. They are the ones with a red rubber suction cup at the end of a long, typically wooden, handle. The cup at the end is flat. If you’re using this one to plunge your toilet, pause right there.

This type of plunger is used to unclog sinks. The flat design of this plunger creates a seal over a sink or tub drain that helps pull out a clog. It’s not made to fit the shape and design of a toilet. It won’t properly create the vacuum effect and it will take longer, if at all to unclog your toilet.

20221108 SM BLOG PLUMB Types of Plungers 01

Flange Toilet Plunger

Here’s the plunger you need to fix your toilet from that nasty clog. The flange toilet plunger is shaped a lot like a sink plunger, but has an extra rubber ring called a flange at the bottom. The shape, almost like a tiered wedding cake, is perfect to create a seal in your toilet bowl to unclog the obstruction in your plumbing. 

The flange toilet plunger has more use than unclogging toilets. Its shape is super versatile and can also fit in just about any drain. If you need to unclog a sink or tub, just fold in the rubber ring at the bottom to create a flat end and voila! You’ve got a traditional plunger.

It needs to be noted, it’s not a good idea to use toilet plungers on sinks–especially kitchen sinks–due to cross contamination. It’s best to keep kitchen plungers in the kitchen and bathroom plungers in the bathroom.

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Accordion Plunger

The accordion plunger gets its name, because it looks like, well, an accordion. It’s made to specifically plunge toilets and is designed using a firmer type of plastic, rather than rubber used for the other two types of plungers. 

Accordion plungers produce a strong vacuum effect and are great at unclogging stubborn blockages. However, it is not user friendly. It takes a lot of muscle to create enough suction to dislodge whatever is blocking your plumbing. 

20221108 SM BLOG PLUMB Types of Plungers 03

As always, if you’re struggling to unclog a sink or toilet you might need to call in a professional plumber. Some clogs are beyond the scope of a plunger and need a plumbing snake or a hydro jet to get the job done. Call a Paschal Pro at 479-900-0784 or schedule online.