why is my toilet bubbling when the shower is running

Toilet bubbling when the shower is running

As you prepare for a relaxing shower, you might gather your favorite clean towel and a bar of fresh-smelling soap before pulling back the shower curtain. You reach toward the faucet and turn the faucets, waiting for the perfect water temperature before stepping under the deluge. But just before you step in, you hear an unsettling gurgling noise coming from the toilet.

Why is my toilet bubbling when the shower is running? Iron Mountain Plumbing, reliable plumbers in Cedar City, UT, provides some possible answers to this question below. 

How Your Property’s Plumbing Works

The drainage system bears a striking resemblance to a tree. Picture roots running beneath your home, with branches reaching various rooms. Your residential drainage system looks similar.

  • Roots: Like the roots of a tree, the sewer drain runs far beneath the ground. Waste from your home’s upper levels travels downward to the drain. The drain line transports it to the municipal sewer system for treatment.  
  • Trunk: The drain pipe reaches upward like a tree trunk.
  • Branches: Each tub, sink, toilet, and shower shoots off this main drain pipe like a tree’s branches. The waste contents travel through the main line and down to the sewage system. 
  • Treetop: Like a treetop, the vent pipe is the uppermost part of your drainage system. Its job is to release trapped gasses from the waste contents as they slide downward. 

Visualizing your drainage system will help you better grasp the plumbing issues behind your gurgling toilet. And we list seven possible reasons for the sound below.

#1 Sewer Drain Blockage

A sewer drain blockage forms beneath the offshoots of toilets, sinks, and showers. Water and waste normally sink to the bottom while air rises toward the top. However, as the blockage grows, air and liquid struggle to move through the drain. 

Then, as your shower drains, water trickles down the shower drain and into the sewer drain, forcing some of the air away. The air chooses the path of least resistance (in this case, your toilet). When the air escapes through your toilet drain, it disturbs the water.  

#2 Vent Pipe Blockage

The vent pipe’s opening at your roof allows trapped air to escape your drain pipe. It prevents sewage gasses from escaping through plumbing drains and entering your home. If the vent pipe develops a blockage, it traps the air. 

Once again, using the path of least resistance, these gasses will likely push through your toilet drain as an escape outlet. Nasty smells often accompany these gasses due to the nature of the bacteria. 

#3 why does my Toilet kee Clogging

Why is my toilet bubbling when the shower is running? The other toilets in your home might also be the main culprits. 

Is a toilet located below the gurgling one? If it develops a clog, it could produce an air surge that escapes through the toilet sharing a bathroom with the shower. 

The water from the shower flows downward with gravity, moving air out of its way. It has to move upward to make room for the draining water, and that’s why it arrives at your toilet while you take a shower.

#4 Shower Clog

Does your shower drain have a potential clog? Since it shares a drainage branch with the toilet, the trapped air’s nearest escape route is the toilet. The air will emerge through your toilet bowl, making the water bubble and gurgle as it rises. 

#5 Municipal Sewer Line or Septic Tank Issue

Sometimes municipal sewer lines develop clogs too. A section of sewer pipe will trap the constant flow of waste and water, resulting in trapped gas seeking an escape route. The closer the blockage is to your home, the more likely your toilet will provide a sufficient escape route. 

When you shower or drain your bath water, copious amounts of liquid travel downward. Gasses must push past the water to find a release upline. Since toilets often have broader, more accommodating drains, the gasses can travel through them more easily. 

Contact your local water authority to report the issue. Similar issues can occur from septic tank failure, including the following:

  • Slow water drainage
  • Swampy areas on your lawn
  • Unpleasant odors arising from the septic tank

#6 Poor Pipe Installation

Finally, improper plumbing installation often factors into constant blockages and inappropriate gas releases. Drain lines and pipes that branch from them require specific slopes to accommodate adequate waste flushing. Without the proper slope measurements, water and waste can move too quickly or slowly. 

The air caught in the mix finds the route offering the least resistance and speediest escape. The gas disturbs the water in your porcelain throne as it rises. A professional plumber can inspect the plumbing system with a special video camera to identify the source of the installation issue.   

Why Do Blockages Form in the Plumbing System?

  • Mineral buildup: Most water supplies contain minerals like calcium, sodium, and magnesium. These minerals may collect on drain and sewer lines, creating a slow but stubborn blockage. 
  • Waste collection: Sometimes, waste doesn’t move through your drainage line. Large waste clumps become lodged in narrow spaces. The waste creates a clog that prevents water and other substances from rinsing down the drain line. 
  • Disposal of inappropriate substances: You should only flush soap and water down most drains. Toilets can handle toilet paper. However, other substances can snag on pipes and collect other debris. 

How To Solve These Plumbing Issues

You can easily dislodge minor clogs located near the drains using the following:

  • Sink or toilet plungers
  • Homemade drain cleaning solutions
  • Drain snakes

If you try these methods with no complete resolution, request an inspection from a local plumber. 

Why Is My Toilet Bubbling When The Shower Is Running? Let Iron Mountain Plumbing Solve The Problem! 

Why is my toilet bubbling when the shower is running?

Iron Mountain Plumbing has answers for this and many other questions involving toilet repair. Call 435-334-5617 today to schedule an inspection and request a repair quote!

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