How To Empty Water From Toilet- A Complete Guide

Do you want to repair your toilet or want to change the former model of your toilet? We all love to change a former thing with a new one. So it’s quite understandable. But if you want to repair or replace the toilet you must drain the water completely beforehand. In that case, there comes an obvious question, “How To Empty Water From Toilet?”

In order to empty water from a toilet, you need to drain the water from the bowl of the toilet as well as the trap. A trap is a kind of water container more like a cavity that usually is situated beyond the toilet bowl. To empty the water from the toilet and trap, you need to cut off the water supply to the toilet and then flush the toilet. 

In some cases, this method may not work properly. So, for your ease, we showed step-by-step instructions in this article. Go through the article if you don’t want to miss anything. 

How To Empty Water From Toilet

The easiest way to empty water from a toilet is, using the flash. For that, firstly you need to shut or cut off the water supply of the commode. Then flash it. Your commode will be empty. 

But if there is a problem in the fixture of the commode, like if it is blocked or broken then this process might not work. 

Then, what to do if the toilet fixture is blocked?

Find out the water shut-off switch and manage to turn off it somehow. Make sure, that once you flush the toilet, no water will flow and the toilet bowl will be empty. Normally, the shut-off switch is situated behind the toilet. You will find it near the floor. Turn off the switch and start flushing the water. Keep flushing water until the tank of your toilet as well as the bowl is empty virtually. 

Even if the tank is empty, your toilet bowl may contain some remaining water. You can sponge the water and make it dry.

If that does not work properly, then we also have a detailed process for you. Follow us.

What You’ll Need

For the detailed and professional process of emptying toilet water, you’ll need some types of equipment and materials. 


  • Rubber Hand Gloves
  • Toilet Plunger
  • Small Bowl or Cup
  • Flexible Hose
  • Sponge
  • Wet-Dry Shop Vaccum
  • Bucket


  • Water 

Step By Step Instructions

Sometimes, turning off the water supply and flushing does not work. So, for emptying the water from the toilet you need to do the task as a professional. Our step-by-step instructions may help you.

Step 1: Turn Off the Water Supply and Flush

man turning off the water supply valve to prevent water from flowing
Image from Speake’s Plumbing

The first step we already know. Shutting off the water supply and flushing the toilet. This first step empties most of the water from the toilet. But this process will not work in a clogged toilet. For a clogged toilet, your first step is plunging. (given below)

As we discussed before, you need to find out the shut-off switch. Turn off the switch, for that you need to turn the handle clockwise. This will cut off the water supply in the toilet. 

What if the shut-off valve does not function properly?

If your shut-off valve is too old to function properly, then you need to shut off the whole water supply system of your house. Then continue the process. 

Step 2: Use a Plunger to remove the Water

person using toilet plunger to remove an object from the toilet trap

Does not matter if your toilet bowl is clogged or not, plunging always removes the water from a toilet.

The motion of the plunger pushes the toilet bowl’s water towards the trap and empties the water. Plunging is the best method to drain the water when your toilet drain is clogged and whenever you flush your toilet, it overflows. 

Once you shut off the water supply your next job is to place the flange of the toilet plunger. Place the flange steadily into the hole of the commode. Then, plunge it.

The motion should be up-and-down, this will drain almost all of the water in the commode. And this process will remove any type of clog in the toilet drain. 

Then, to empty the water tank of the toilet, flush it. Only a little water can remain in the toilet bowl, which you can sponge easily. But if there is a lot of water remaining, then plunge it again. 

Step 3: Siphoning to remove the Water

flexible hose for siphoning water from toilet

For siphoning, you will need a short but flexible hose. For this step, you must wear long hand gloves because in this step you will dive your one hand into the commode. Sounds gross, but you have to do it with the hose. This process will not be effective if there is any paper or solid material in the bowl of the toilet.

Firstly, you need water to fill up the hose. Then, stop both sides of the opening with your hand or tap, so that the water can not overflow and drain out from the hose. Place one opening/ending of the hose into the commode hole and another opening/ending into a low flat bucket. 

After placing the hose, release both sides of the opening of the hose. Keep the bucket surface lower than the commode bowl water level. This will drain the water through the hose into the bucket. 

If your toilet flush is broken then you can use this process to empty the water tank of the toilet. 

Step 4: Sponging to remove the Water

a person wearing a glove and holding a sponge

Once you are done following every step, still there will be some remaining water in the toilet bowl. And to remove this water, you need to sponge it. Wear gloves and take a large sponge. Soak the sponge with toilet water and squeeze it into a bucket. The process is easy and quick. 

Step 5: Vacuuming to remove the Water

When the toilet water is clean, you can use a wet-dry vacuum. It can quickly drain a toilet. But be careful when you are using a vacuum machine. Do not fulfill the vacuum bin with toilet water. We can bet, you will not be very pleased to slosh and carry a heavy bin of a vacuum which is full of commode water.


How to remove water from a clogged toilet?

To remove water from a clogged toilet, you should first fix the clog of the toilet. For this, you will need a toilet plunger. If your toilet bowl is already overflowing, then you should manually remove some water from the toilet bowl. You can do that with a small bowl or cup. 

Do that until you get enough space for plunging. After removing enough water from the overflowing toilet bowl, place the plunger into the toilet hole steadily. Push the plunger and create an up-and-down motion, that will force the water to go out through the toilet trap and your toilet will be unclogged. 

After unclogging the toilet, cut off the water supply and flush it. Then just follow the step-by-step instruction given above. 

Can hot water unblock the toilet?

Sometimes, hot water can unblock the toilet. But make sure the water is not boiling. Never use boiling water to unblock the toilet.

woman holding dish soap and hot water in toilet
Image from Easy recipes

Again, only hot water will not be that much help. So before using hot water, apply some dish soap or detergent to the toilet. Then pour extremely hot but not boiling water. Leave it for 15-20 minutes. The dish soap, detergent, and hot water will soften the clog, and then flush the toilet. The block will be unblocked.

Can vinegar unclog a toilet?

Yes, vinegar can unclog a toilet. There is no doubt that vinegar is one of the best cleaning agents. For unclogging the toilet with vinegar, you need to mix hot water and white vinegar together.

The portion of the white vinegar and hot water should be the same. This means, that if you take 1 cup of white vinegar, add one cup of hot water. But the amount of the mixture will not be enough for unclogging. So, better if you take two or three cups of white vinegar and hot water.

Pour the mixture into the clog, this will break the clog. When the clog is broken, flush your toilet. 


To conclude, we can say that in order to empty toilet water you will need to shut off the water supply and flush the toilet. For better results, you can plunge, siphon, and sponge it to remove water.

We hope that now you got your answers to your question, “How To Empty Water From Toilet?”

Now, as you know everything about emptying water from the toilet, then what are you waiting for? Go get your toilet replaced/repaired now!

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