Introduction: How to TP a House

Want to destroy your friends house with toilet paper and leave a mess for them to clean up? Of course you do!

TPing has been a classic American prank since the invention of toilet paper in 1857. The act of TPing involves throwing toilet paper rolls over a tall objects, such as a tree, a shed, or a house, with the purpose of leaving a trail of paper behind for the victim to clean up. By using this Instructable anyone can master the art of TPing and wreak havoc on their friends.


Depending on the location of the activity some police departments can charge TPers with littering, trespassing, disorderly conduct, or criminal mischief, especially when the homeowner's property is damaged. Pranking the mail box is a federal offense so leaving the mail box alone is in your best interest. Please be respectful to not damage any property and be careful when planning a target. If caught, volunteering to clean up the mess is always a nice way to limit the amount of possible consequences resulting from the TP.

Step 1: Gather a Group

Gather a group of friends, a minimum group size of 3, that all understand the risks and are willing to have some late night fun!


Limiting the group to 6 to 8 people maximum will help to drastically reduce your chances of getting caught.

Step 2: Materials

After gathering your group go to a local shopping center and buy some rolls of single ply toilet paper. You will want to purchase around 6 rolls per thrower. Each roll will take about 2 minutes to empty onto the target.

You will want to distribute your purchasing to multiple stores to avoid raising any suspicions.

You shouldn't simply take the paper from your own personal supply, for one you won't have any next time you need to use the bathroom and the stronger two-ply paper used by many is thicker and easier for the victim to clean up. The best toilet paper to use is single ply. This is true because when the victim comes outside the next morning to clean up they will begin pulling down the TP by hand. You want the toilet paper to rip and stay in the tree. The single ply tears much easier, compared to 2-ply, and as a result, is harder to clean up.

Step 3: Decide on a Time

Starting between 11 and 1 o'clock should provide enough darkness to cloak your activities enough to remain anonymous. Most victims will also be in bed by this time (with a few exceptions - so be careful).

The right time could make or break your TP experience. If you go too early you will need to rush the TP job.

Step 4: Battle Gear

Your clothes should be dark, consisting of blacks, dark greens, and dark blues. Think about what your surroundings will look like and dress similarly to camouflage yourself.

You don't need to be dressed like a ninja assassin but you want to be well hidden. Also plan for the weather, cold weather will require a sweatshirt and/or coat. Limiting the amount of visible skin and reflective materials will help to limit your chances of getting caught.

You will need to be prepared to run and jump for your life. Knowing this, take care to pick the appropriate footwear. Such as black or dark colored running shoes.

Step 5: Choose Your Roles

Possible roles to choose from include

  • Thrower(s)
  • Returner(s)
  • Sentry

The thrower is the primary thrower of the toilet paper. He or she will need to decide where to make the first throw and will need to be careful to execute a flawless lob.

The returner needs to place him or herself on the opposite side of the target from the thrower and return the roll back over the target to the thrower. The returner needs to provide quality return throws and also position themselves into difficult places.

The sentry is tasked with watching for any cars, people, or any other ways the fun could possibly be ruined.

Step 6: Making the Approach

You want to make the approach fast but also quietly. If you need to drive to the target you should park your car somewhere out of sight from the target and walk. You want to remain low to the ground and limit the amount of time spent in one location. The quicker and quieter the approach the more likely you are to remain hidden. A drive by before beginning your approach is not advised. Circling cars could raise the suspicions of the victims.

When my girlfriend attempted to prank me late one evening I saw her drive by my house and it was then that I knew they were up to no good. You will just have to be patient to scope out the target.


Laughter and talking can be quite loud at night when all else is quiet, so limit the amount of conversation to before you exit your vehicle or begin your approach. All participating parties should understand their roles beforehand and should require no further communication.

Step 7: Prepping the Rolls

In order to get optimal coverage of the tree with the toilet paper, the rolls need to be prepped before thrown. A "rooster tail" needs to be created for every roll before it is thrown.

Creating the Rooster Tail

First: Get a roll and disconnect the outermost layer of paper from the rest of the roll so that it can be unraveled

Second: Unravel but do not disconnect an arms length of paper from the roll so that it hangs off behind the roll. This is called the "rooster tail".

Between 6 to 10 squares should be enough. A good rule of thumb is that tail should touch the ground as you hold the roll at your waist.


Prepping the rolls before you reach the target will limit the amount of time you spend standing around at the target, decreasing the risk of getting caught.

Step 8: Throwing Technique

Throwing Technique

When throwing the roll try not to throw it like a rock, you want the roll to have backspin so that the paper will unravel while flying through the air.

First: Hold the roll with your dominate throwing hand.

Second: Place your first three fingers (pointer, middle, and ring fingers) on the back of the roll.

Third: Pinch the roll firmly with your pinky and thumb.

Fourth: Drape the rooster tail over the roll down the back of your hand and arm.

Fifth: Aim above your target throw a high arching lob into the air.

Sixth: Throw a high arching lob into the air, flicking you wrist as you release to create backspin on the roll.

The backspin, along with the drag created by the rooster tail will ensure that the roll unravels as it flies through the air. The goal is to have the roll fly over the tree and leave a trail of toilet paper in the branches from the thrower to the returner. This will ensure the most efficient use of your materials and will make the clean up much harder.

Troubleshooting: If the roll is not unraveling properly try holding the end of the rooster tail in your opposite hand while throwing. If that still doesn't work, try holding down the rooster tail with one of your feet.

Step 9: Teamwork

The returners job, once the initial throw has been made, is to throw the roll back to the thrower in the same manner as described above, thus double covering the target. You can either leave the paper connected or break off from the previous tail, prep the roll again (see the previous step), then throw. This process is repeated until the roll is empty. Then repeat steps 7 - 9 until all the materials have been used.

Step 10: Spotted?

Similarly to the Stop, Drop, and Roll procedure taught in fire safety 101, Stop Drop and Be Quiet. In the darkness of your victims front yard it is near impossible to see you and your group laying in the grass. Remain calm and silent like a sniper hiding in the weeds. There is a strong chance that the threat will not be able to see you and this is most likely a false alarm.

If its a false alarm continue on with the attack.

If spotted you have a couple options:

First: Run away as quickly as possible without looking back. Splitting up is a good escape technique if being chased. If not being chased rendezvous at the get away vehicle and drive away like nothing happened.

Second: Apologize and clean up the mess.

Third: Apologize and upon victim's return inside, resume the attack.

Step 11: Making the Escape

After you have completed the TP and did so without being spotted, make sure you leave no evidence that you were there. Pick up any clothing you may have taken off and be sure to not leave anything that could place you at the scene. Leave the target area in the same manner you made your approach, remain low to the ground and leave in a quick but quiet fashion. Again talking and/or laughter can be very loud so be sure to limit any conversation or giggling, which will be very difficult to manage.


Make sure that all participants know not to talk about your activities with people outside of the TP group. You want to remain anonymous for as long as possible. Inevitably, you will probably be found out. Someone in your group will squeal or brag about the night's events within 72 hours. Expect retaliation from the victim.

In my past experience, it wasn't long before justice made its way to me and my own home.