* How to Flush a Toilet Without a Handle

So, you just had to use that toilet real bad, because let’s face it, Taco Bell doesn’t treat your stomach right. You’re all done with your business, you reach for the handle to flush, but oh no, the toilet handle is broken… Now you’ve got a problem.

Even though this is a problem, luckily there are a few things that you can do about it, several ways to flush your toilet even without that trusty handle.

Can You Flush a Toilet with a Broken Handle?

The reality is, of course, that the handle does make flushing a whole lot easier, as this is the function that it was designed for. However, in the event that the handle is broken for whatever reason, there are a few good ways that you can manually flush a toilet. Of course, exactly how you flush the toilet without the toilet handle does depend on the extent of the damage.

For instance, if the handle is still connected to the chain, then you could potentially flush it from the outside without much added effort. Let’s take a look below at all of the different ways on how to flush a toilet without a handle.

Toilet Tank Lever

How to Flush a Toilet Without a Handle

What we want to do right now is to provide you with various methods of how to flush a toilet that has no handle or has a broken handle. Let’s take a look at all of the different options that you have at your disposal.

If the Handle Is Still Attached to the Chain

If the handle is still attached to the chain, then this process should be fairly easy. Even if the handle is broken, you should be able to twist and pull on it enough to lift up that chain just far enough in order to lift the flapper up so that the toilet can flush.

However, if we are being honest, the chances of this working are extremely minimal. In most cases, even if the handle is still there, it’s probably broken to the point where it won’t lift up the chain, and moreover, we are here today to talk about if the handle is completely gone. Let’s move on to the next section.

When the Handle Is Totally Missing

Even if the handle is totally missing, there are still a few options that you have at your disposal. What you of course need to remember here is that the handle pulls up the chain, which pulls up the flapper.

There are many different steps that are involved in toilet flushing, which means that there are many different opportunities for you to intervene, or in other words, just because you can’t pull on the handle doesn’t mean that you cannot manually recreate the other processes or steps that are involved in a toilet flushing.

Solution #1: Lift Up the Flapper

The easiest solution that you have at your disposal here is to take the lid off of the toilet tank and then use those hands of yours to either grab the chain connected to the flapper or the flapper itself and then lift it up. Lift up the flapper until all of the water in the toilet tank has flushed down through to the bowl and then push it back down into place so it re-seals the hole.

Toilet Flapper

Solution #2: Pour Water into the Tank

Another thing that you can do in order to manually flush your toilet is to pour a bucket of water into the toilet tank. All you have to do is to remove the cover of the toilet tank and then pour some water into the tank, making sure to reach above the waterline. As soon as the water gets above the indicated level, it will then begin to move through the overflow tube and down into the bowl. How much water you will need for this depends on the model of toilet you have.

Do keep in mind that this method does go quite slowly, so there will not be all that much water pressure or force running through the bowl. In other words, this method works fine for liquid waste but probably doesn’t pack enough of a punch to deal with solid waste, especially large amounts.

Solution #3: Pour Water into the Bowl

The faster and easier way to use a bucket of water to manually flush the toilet is by simply pouring that water right into the toilet. Get a bucket of water and start pouring it right into the bowl. Start slowly and then gradually increase how fast you pour the water.

A good gallon of water poured in with decent speed should be enough to flush down any solid waste. Once again, exactly how much water you will require for this will depend on the model of the toilet as well as how much waste is currently in the bowl.

How to Flush a Toilet Without a Handle

Mistakes to Avoid, Tips & Tricks

Finally, here are a few tips to make the task easier:

  • If the handle is missing, chances are that it is because the chain snapped and the handle fell off. Inspect the toilet for damage and see if the chain and the flapper need to be replaced.
  • Don’t just keep flushing your toilet with water from a bucket. Although it works fine, it’s not quite as effective as an actual functioning toilet.
  • If you are unable to replace the handle on your own, call a plumber to have them do it for you. You need a functioning toilet after all.


We have provided you with three different ways to flush your toilet even with a broken handle (technically four ways), but that said, at the end of the day, you just have to get that handle replaced.