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Toilet Repair and trouble shooting


Of all the fixtures in the home the toilet can be the most problematic: they come on by themselves, they waste water, they leak, and they sometimes don't come on at all.


Most toilet consist of the bowl at the base, and tank that sit on top of the bowl.

Inside the tank there is: 1) the fill valve; this is the water supply part of the toilet. 2) The flush valve; this is the outlet part of the toilet, the part that flushes the water into the bowl. And 3) the flush lever handle; this is the part with the chain or the part that actuates the flush valve. it pull the flapper, ball, or tower up to let the water into the flush valve so the toilet can flush. 


Toilet tank refills itself

When a toilet comes on without anyone flushing it, it is actually refilling itself.

What happen is the flapper is leaking and the toilet think it is low on water and begins to refill itself.

The water level drops, the valve float drops. This is usually due to a bad flapper or seal.

This is a Big Time waste of water. You should change the flapper, seal or tank ball.

Sometimes the seat of the flush valve need to be clean, it can be cleaned with a little dish washing liquor.

Always use a rag or fingers in a circular motion to clean flush valve seat.

Leaking flappers are the number one reason for a high water bill.


Tank fills or over fill

An internal or malfunctioning part inside the fill valve will cause the toilet to over fill. The water will rise and run down the over flow pipe, into the toilet, and down the drain.

A float stuck in the down or valve open position will cause the fill valve to continually run and over fill.

There are kits to rebuild some of these fill valves however, most plumbers simply prefer to change the hold fill valve.


Toilet tank will not fill; little or no water

A toilet will not fill because the fill valve float is stuck in the up or close valve position or there is sediment in the fill valve itself.

Often enough when there is work in the street on a nearby water main the sediment that was upset by the water main workers will find its way into toilet fixtures and shower heads.

some models can be  taken apart and clean however, many time the fill valve will have to be replace.


Flush lever handles

Flush lever handles are usually a problem because most people feel that as long as it work there's no problem.

Not so, a lever should be up and not pointing to the base of the toilet. It should also be free and loose not hanging up and holding your flapper up.

Bad flash lever handle will keep your flapper from seating properly allowing your water to run down the drain., again, a high water bill.

One last thing about flush lever handles, if you want a flush with one push of the lever without you holding the lever unstill the flush is complete and all the water empties out of the tank, then don't make the chain too long.

A long chain will not let the flapper rise high enough so water can get underneath it and keep it up.


Toilet leaks on floor

The two main reasons a toilet leaks on the floor are: 1) the gasket between the tank and bowl is leaking or 2) the bowl cleaning tube that fits into the over flow tube has come loose and is spraying water over the tanks inner wall .

To repair a tank to bowl leak you simply need to buy a tank to bowl kit, shut off water supply, drain the water from the tank, disconnect supply pipe, unbolt the tank using a screw driver inside the tank and a wrench under the top part of the bowl.

Install the new bolts the same way the old bolts came off using only rubber washers inside of the tank.



   Fill Valve Removal and Installation                  


  1. Shut off water; turn supply valve clockwise.

  2. Flush the toilet.

  3. Remove the excess water in the tank with a sponge or rag.

  4. Notice under the toilet tank there are two water supply nuts. One nut connected the supply pipe, and the other (a flat nut) holds down and mounts the fill valve to the tank.

  5. Remove the supply pipe nut first, then the flat hold-down or mounting nut.

  6. Finally pull the fill valve straight out.


                      Fill Valve Installation

   IMPORTANT: Before installing read directions about water level adjustment.

  1. Our more popular models may need water level and height adjusting before they are installed. Some fill valves are put into the tank supply hole repeatedly before proper height can be established.    

  2. Install the rubber mounting seal on the base of fill valve. (This may be two pieces of rubber that are fused together at the factory that will have to be broken apart. The outer piece of rubber is what you use on the base of the fill valve.)

  3. Put the fill valve into the tanks supply hole and screw the flat nut on the underside of the fill valve.

  4. Install fill valve making sure the front of the valve is properly positioned. (The front of the fill valve should face the overflow pipe.)

  5. Make sure the refill tube is secure in the over flow tube. (They can come loose and spray water behind toilet.)

  6. Remember to hold the fill valve in position firmly, while tightening the hold down nut, supply pipe.


Below three different types of fill valves

    Flat type no float needed

Flat type no float needed


ballcock with ball float.

ballcock with ball float



Float on valves body

Float on valves body



Note: Most toilets are made of porcelains. For this reason, tighten all your fittings and nuts HAND TIGHT AND THEN SOME.
Everything should be tighten just enough to make It work. In other words, if you are seating a toilet to the floor, make it just tight enough that it won't rock.
And if you are working with pipes or tubing, tighten just enough that in won't leak, and then some.


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Written by: Chet Thompson


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fill valve and flush valve





supply valve

Turn supply valve off counter clockwise










Hold down or Mounting nut

Hold down or Mounting nut





Toilet Supply and Shut Off

Toilet Supply and Shut Off



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