Drano clog remover is a popular and helpful product for unclogging bathtubs and sinks. As a powerful agent for clearing drains, it might be one of the solutions that come to mind when you have a clogged toilet. But can you use Drano to unclog your toilet or avoid the idea?

You can’t use Drano in a toilet. Most toilets are made of porcelain. Drano clog remover creates an oxidizing chemical reaction that releases a lot of heat. Such heat can cause cracks on your toilet or plumbing, resulting in costly repair or replacement costs later down the road.

In the rest of this article, I’ll explain in detail what happens if you use Drano to unclog your toilet. I’ll also discuss how you can minimize damage to your toilet if you’ve mistakenly used Drano and recommend alternative products you should use to unclog your toilet. Read on for more.

What Happens if You Use Drano in Toilet?

Using Drano in the toilet can cause the liquid to rest on top of the toilet materials and cause blockage. The reaction between Drano and the backup releases a lot of heat, and the longer it sits on the blockage, the more heat is released.

Doing this has several implications and risks, as explained below:

There’s a Risk of Splashback That Can Harm Your Skin or Eyes

After pouring Drano into your toilet and noticing that it just sits on top of the blockage, one of your natural responses is to get a plunger and try to speed up the process. However, because the reaction between Drano and the blockage is highly exothermic, using a plunger can cause the mixture to splash on you.

This mix of chemicals can potentially burn your skin or even hurt your eyes if it spills into them.

Drano Can Produce Harmful and Potentially Toxic Gas

Drano clog remover might also mix with other chemicals in your toilet or chemicals found in products that you use for regular maintenance. These chemicals include bleach and ammonia. The reaction between Drano and these chemicals can produce harmful and potentially toxic gas.

This gas can cause many issues, including eye irritation and chest pains, causing breathing difficulties.

Drano Will Cause Toilet Damage or Damaged Plumbing

The materials used in constructing toilets aren’t designed to withstand the exothermic reaction associated with Drano toilet cleaner. Accordingly, after adding Drano clog remover, the heat build-up can damage your toilet, causing cracks on the porcelain surface or parts.

Additionally, the chemicals in Drano clog remover, coupled with the heat generated, can also corrode metal pipes or damage PVC pipes. It can result in costly repairs if this damage isn’t arrested promptly.

Is Drano Bad for the Toilet?

Drano is bad for the toilet, so it’s best not to use it as a clog remover for your toilet. Using this compound for your toilet can result in costly physical damage to your toilet and plumbing while also posing considerable risks to your health and well-being.

Suppose the damage to your plumbing doesn’t dissuade you from using this product; the discomfort of skin burning, chest pains, difficulty breathing, or eye irritation should.

Consider using the Drano Max Build-Up Remover. It’s safe for garbage disposals, bathrooms, kitchens, including toilets. This product is excellent for doing the following:

  • Remove build-up
  • Prevent septic system back-up

Unlike Drano, you can leave the Drano Max Build-Up Remover overnight — it won’t damage your pipes. The product doesn’t contain phosphate, which is harmful to lakes and rivers, making it more eco-friendly than some cleaning products available today.

How to Minimize Damage to Your Toilet After Using Drano

If you’ve made the mistake of using Drano clog remover for your toilet, there are specific steps that you can take to minimize the potential damage. I’ll discuss these in detail below:

Use a Plunger to Remove the Blockage

You can use a plunger to remove the blockage or dislodge the clog. As stated above, the exothermic reaction becomes more severe the more the Drano clog remover sits on the blockage. Therefore, removing or dislodging the blockage as quickly as possible can negate this exothermic reaction.

Because of the risk posed by the corrosive compounds to various parts of your body, I recommend wearing protective clothing or gear to protect yourself. Use safe gloves and consider wearing protective goggles for your eyes to keep the splashing chemicals from burning your skin.

Use a Toilet Auger

A toilet auger is a specialized kind of drain snake, an effective tool for removing drain clogs in the toilet. You can use this auger to dislodge the clog, minimizing heat generation and helping to prevent the formation of harmful gas.

Like in the case of the plunger, take the necessary steps and wear the equipment required to prevent the mixture from getting on any part of your body.

Consult a Professional Plumber

If unsure, I recommend consulting an expert or a professional plumber to help remove the clog. In some instances, you may be unable to reach the clog or dislodge the clog safely.

In these instances, safety should be your primary concern. Remember, a professional plumber may have access to specialized tools that you may not be able to get.

Best Alternative Products to Unclog Your Toilet

There are easily-accessible alternatives that you can use to unclog your toilet without having to worry about potential damage to your toilet or plumbing.

Let us discuss some of these alternatives. These are:

Drano Max Build-Up Remover

The Drano Max Build-Up Remover is designed specifically to fix slow-running toilets. Unlike other products designed to unclog shower and sink drains, this product features microorganisms that accelerate organic matter breakdown in the pipework to minimize blockage.

However, it’s vital to note that this product is ideal only for slow-running toilets. If your toilet is completely clogged, this build-up remover won’t unclog your toilet. However, its use will serve to minimize clog formation in your toilet.

Vinegar and Baking Soda

Vinegar and baking soda are standard household cleaning solutions that you can use to unclog your toilet. They especially come in handy when plungers or augers fail to work. Below are the steps on how to use baking soda and vinegar to unclog your toilet:

  • Pour baking soda and vinegar into the toilet. Add a cup of baking soda, followed by 2 cups of vinegar after the baking soda has sat for approximately five minutes. After adding the vinegar, you should notice bubble formation that results from the chemical reaction between the two compounds.
  • Leave the mixture to sit for several minutes. Let the vinegar and baking soda mixture sit in the toilet bowl for a few minutes. Ideally, the mixture should bubble for several minutes. This effect is expected and is completely normal.
  • Flush the mixture. The last step is to flush the mixture. You should hear a suction sound which will indicate that the clog has successfully been removed. However, if you don’t hear this sound, the clog is likely still there, and it might be time to call in the experts.

A Mixture of Hot Water and Detergent

In this approach, all you need to do is heat some water, mix it with detergent, and pour it into the toilet. Once left in the toilet bowl for several minutes, this boiling mixture can help to soften the clog. Wait several minutes, and then flush your toilet.

Once more, keep an ear out for the suction sound to know whether you’ve successfully removed the clog.


Bleach is a common household item you can use to unclog your toilet. Like the hot water and detergent mixture, add powdered bleach to your toilet and let it sit for several minutes before flushing the toilet.

However, bleach typically reacts dangerously with other cleaning compounds and chemicals present in your toilet, which can expose you to toxic gas. You should only use bleach if you haven’t added other cleaning agents or Drano clog remover to minimize this risk.


Tempting as it may be, don’t use Drano clog remover in your toilet. Drano is formulated with certain chemicals which can cause a highly exothermic reaction, damaging your toilet bowl and parts, plumbing, or both.

Because it sits on top of the blockage and works slowly, it can be problematic to remove through plunging and can potentially react with other chemicals in your toilet, producing toxic gas or causing physical harm.

Consider using the Drano Max Build-Up remover, which is specially formulated to minimize clogging. Don’t hesitate to call a professional plumber if nothing else works.

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