toilet not used for month

What To Do If A Toilet Is Not Used for Months

If you are planning to be away from your home for months and are wondering what happens if you do not flush a toilet for a long time, stick around to find out.

When the toilet is not used for months two things will happen. Water in your toilet bowl will evaporate and algae or bacteria is likely to grow inside the toilet tank. If it is during the winter months the toilet water will freeze.

In this article we will cover what happens if a toilet is not used, how often you should flush an unused toilet and what you should do with your toilet when you are going for several months.

What Happens if A Toilet is Not Used for Months?

If a toilet is not used for months. The likelihood of your toilet water evaporating is high which in turn removes the water seal which helps prevent sewer smell from reaching your home. You are likely to smell odor in your bathroom.

If the toilet is also not flushed for a long time, you will find algae and dirt in the toilet tank because the water stays stagnant for too long.

How Often Should You Flush An Unused Toilet

You should flush an unused toilet at least once a week. This will help keep the traps full.

A trap helps  create a seal to prevent sewer gas from going up your home, if the water evaporates you risk odor in your home.

How Long Does it Take for Toilet to Evaporate

It takes approximately one week for a toilet to evaporate. Factors such as humidity of the area will affect the rate at which the evaporation will take place. 

That is why it’s advised for you to flush an unused toilet at least once a week to make sure the toilet bowl water is fresh and full at all times.

See also Why Your Bathroom Smells of Urine After Shower

What Do You Do with Your Toilet When You Go On Vacation

There are several steps you should take to prepare your toilet for a long vacation. This will give you peace of mind while away from leaks or potentially coming back to finding a mess.

  • Turn off water line

Most important, is to turn off the main water line and the water supply to your toilet. 

This will keep your toilet free from any water supply mishaps that might happen that could end up flooding your home. Which is costly to repair.

  • Put Antifreeze

If you will be away during the winter months, you should put antifreeze in your toilet bowl.Make sure you use non toxic antifreeze ( marine antifreeze) that is suitable for household plumbing not the common car antifreeze.

This is to ensure you do not affect the bacteria in the septic responsible for breaking down waste.

Putting antifreeze will prevent your toilet water from freezing up, which is not good for porcelain. It could lead to cracks or an exploding toilet.

  • Empty the Toilet Tank

Make sure to empty your toilet tank completely. This will prevent any growth of bacteria and stains that could arise due to stagnant water in the tank.

Additionally it could also avoid any mishaps that may happen incase of leaks from the tank.

  • Clean Your Toilet Thoroughly

Before leaving make sure you clean your toilet thoroughly. This will ensure you get rid of all urine which left for a long time can turn to permanent stains. 

  • Close All Covers

Additionally make sure to leave the toilet tank lid and toilet seat closed. This will prevent any dust or insects from crawling inside it. 

See also How To Protect Bathroom Floor from Urine


Now you know what to do when you will be leaving your toilet unused for months. Make sure to turn off the main water line and supply line to your toilet. 

Additionally, empty the toilet tank and put antifreeze on if you will be away during the winter months.

If you do not do the above, water in the toilet bowl will evaporate, which in turn removes the water seal to prevent sewer gas from going up your home. And the steps above will definitely grow in your toilet tank. The steps above will save you all the trouble of odor and bacteria in the tank.

See also How to prevent  Legs Leaving Residue on Toilet Seat

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