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Why is My Toilet Gurgling?


The sound of a toilet gurgling is more than an annoyance. This noise suggests there’s trouble brewing in your plumbing system. By finding and solving the problem quickly, you can avoid a messy backup.

Issues With the Pipes

If your sewer lines were recently cleaned, there may be air in your pipes. To release trapped air, turn on all your faucets until the water flows smoothly without sputtering.

Another possible cause of toilet gurgling is an obstruction in your sewer lateral, the pipe under your yard that carries wastewater to the sewer. If you notice your sink or bathtub drain gurgling when you flush the toilet, you probably have a sewer line blockage.

These blockages are usually caused by roots that have penetrated the lines, or by grease or other waste that shouldn’t have been poured down the toilet or sink. You may be able to clear a small clog with a liquid sewer line cleaner. For larger clogs, contact a plumber who can bring the tools to remove a sewer line clog without damaging your pipes or fixtures.

Blocked Vent Stack

Your plumbing system has a vent that lets in outdoor air, which is necessary to allow the waste to flow down into the sewer system. Most plumbing systems have only one vent stack that opens somewhere on the roof. If this becomes blocked, a vacuum develops that leads to sluggish drains, sewer odors in your bathroom and kitchen, and gurgling noises from your plumbing fixtures.

If you can reach your roof, check that the vent stack isn’t blocked by debris such as dead leaves or an animal nest. If there are no visible obstructions to remove, you can clean the vent stack with a garden hose. You’ll need to feed the hose nozzle into the vent pipe and spray water to dislodge the clog. For a safer way to clean your vent stack, contact a plumber.

If that toilet gurgling you’re hearing has you worried, get in touch with us at Reliance Home Services anywhere around Greater Los Angeles.

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