How to use a plunger: Best plungers

Best toilet plunger of 2017 reviews

If you’re looking for the best toilet plunger, we’ve got you covered with our toilet plunger reviews. We’ve done our research and looked at the best selling and highest rates toilet plungers to uncover the truth. We have toilet plunger reviews and top picks for low-flow toilets, traditional toilets and discrete looks.

Most toilet clogs happen in the toilet itself, in the trap. The trap is u-shaped section inside the toilet that holds water and keeps sewer gases from escaping into the home. Because of the tight turns of the trap, blockages usually occur at this point. A plunger works by forcing the blockage through the trap and into the larger diameter sewer pipe that lies beyond the toilet.

It’s important that your plunger make a tight seal with the bottom of your toilet. With a tight seal all of the force is directed down the toilet toward the blockage.


Best Toilet Plunger for Low-Flow Toilets

Korky 99-4A Max Performance Plunger
Korky 99-4A best toilet plunger
Korky 99-4A.

The Korky 99-4A works especially well with low-flow toilets and is our choice for best toilet plunger overall. The lower section is made of a soft rubber and forms to the shape of most any toilet, which is especially useful with the oblong shape of many low-flow toilets. But the Korky 99-4A works well with traditional toilets as well.

With a beehive shape, the Korky 99-4A can create a great deal of pressure. While the lower portion is made of soft rubber, the middle section is made of a stiffer material that helps generate that additional pressure.

The unique t-shaped handle also makes this one of the easiest plungers to use. It is less awkward to handle and the handle makes it even easier to work the plunger, generating the force necessary to clear a blockage.

This Old House rated the Korky 99-4A as one of its Best New Home Products when it was released. The Korky 99-4A has 4.5 stars on Amazon and Home Depot websites,  generating hundreds of positive reviews.

Buy on Amazon


Best Toilet Plunger for Good Looks

OXO Good Grips Hideaway Toilet Plunger
OXO Good Grips Plunger
OXO Good Grips Plunger.

The OXO Good Grips Hideaway Toilet Plunger and Canister make a discrete pair for tucking away in a corner of your bathroom, making it the best toilet plunger for good looks. The plunger fits neatly into its paired canister, which opens and closes automatically with a spring. The canister also has a built in drip tray to keep water off of your bathroom floor.

The OXO Good Grips Hideaway has a flanged shape, which doesn’t create as much force as the Korky 99-4A. But the OXO is still an effective plunger and depending on your needs, style may be a more important factor for you.

The handle on the OXO Good Grips Hideaway has a nub at the end with a flat top that makes it easier to handle and work the plunger.

TheOXO Good Grips Hideaway Toilet Plunger has ratings of 4.5 stars on Bed, Bath & Beyond and Amazon, generating hundreds of positive reviews. The plunger is especially noted for its discrete looks that help it disappear in a bathroom.

Buy on Amazon


Best Toilet Plunger Alternatives

Neiko 60166A Toilet Plunger
Neiko Heavy Duty plunger review
Neiko 60166A.

The Neiko 60166A is an excellent performer at clearing clogged drains and is a perennial favorite at Amazon, with 4.5 stars and more than 1,000 reviews. This is also the top-rated plunger on Amazon.

The Neiko 60166A has a tiered-shaped cup and is a powerful performer and worth your consideration if you don’t like the looks of the Korky 99-4A. With proper plunger technique the Neiko 60166A can clear any  clog. The Neiko 60166A sports a light weight, aluminum handle that should hold up well to normal bathroom use.

Buy on Amazon

G.T. Water Products, Inc. MP100-3 Master Plunger
Master Plunger review
MP100-3 Master Plunger.

The Master Plunger moves a lot of water and with its oversized baffle design it can create a lot of force. The large baffles do tend to trap water and debris, however, so this plunger should be cleaned after use.

The Master Plunger has to be seated properly in the toilet and will work best with traditional toilets with round openings. Made of a stiffer material, it will not adjust to form most low-flow toilets. Like the other plungers tested here, the Master Plunger has earned 4.5 stars at Amazon.

Buy on Amazon


Proper plunger technique

To make clearing your clogged toilet easier, follow these basic steps:

  1. Place the plunger in the toilet and fill the cup with water. You can start with a gentle plunge to expel the air from the cup. You want to use water to free your clog, not trapped air. The water volume will help you generate greater clearing power.
  2. Make sure the plunger has a good seal with the toilet opening. You may  need to adjust the angle away from vertical to get the best seal on some low-flow toilets.
  3. Start with some gentle pumps of the plunger. It’s important to work water, and thus the clog, back and forth to dislodge it. You can slowly increase the force as necessary to dislodge the clog.

Learn more on how to use a plunger.


Cleaning a plunger

After you’ve used your plunger you can rinse it in the clean water that remains in the bowl. You can also submerge the plunger in the bowl and give the toilet a flush, to help cleanse the plunger.

If you wish to further disinfect your plunger, put a quarter cup of bleach in the bowl and move the plunger cup around in the water. Be sure to use a non-chlorine bleach if you have a septic system. When you’re done, flush the toilet and rinse the plunger in the clean water of the bowl.

You can also opt to spray the plunger with a disinfectant, such as Lysol.


What won’t work

Plunger for sink and tub drains.
Plunger for sink and tub drains.

A standard sink plunger, with a flat base and no type of flange is made to be placed against flat surfaces like a shower or sink drain. These types of plungers will not make a good seal in a toilet or generate enough force to dislodge a clog.


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