How To Repair A Leaky Toilet
Most of us take our toilets for granted. They do their jobs and we pay them no mind. This changes when things go wrong. This is especially true when the toilet won’t stop running. Before you start panicking, rest assured that most leaks are nothing and you can fix them rather quickly on your own. You just have to pinpoint where the leak is and replace or adjust the thing causing the problem. To get you started, here is a short guide to help you close the leak and get you back to your life in Scottsdale, AZ.
The first thing to try is adjusting the lift chain which connects the handle to the rest of the flush assembly. You can tell if this is the problem by simply jiggling the handle to see if the leaking stops. If it does stop, you should try moving the chain’s position to prevent it from wrapping around the lift arm again. Most of the time, this will be your problem. So, it should be the first thing you check. If the leak comes back or does not go away, you can then move to the next step which is to check to see if the chain is too short or too long. The chain opens the flapper value to begin the flush and needs to be the right size for your toilet to work properly.
The chain may be the usual cause, but if your toilet still leaks, you have an even bigger problem. In this case, you need to find the source of the leak, and to do that you need a dye tablet. You may have seen these at your local plumbing supply shop, but what they do is make the water blue so leaks stand out. You use these tablets by dropping the tablet into the tank at the moment the water starts filling back up after a flush. If you have a leak, the water in the bowl or at the spot of the leak will turn blue.
After the lift chain, the flapper valve is the next most likely leak point. The flapper valve lets water into the tank and you get leaks if it does not seal the tank after flushing. Unlike the chain, the only way to fix the valve is to replace it. Often you will only need to change the valve itself, but if its seat is cracked you will need to replace the whole unit. The flapper valve assembly consists of several parts and each of them could be the source of your leak including the valve itself, its seat, and gasket ring that ultimately seals the space between the tank and the bowl. Fortunately, the parts can be replaced separately and if the leak is only intermittent the part may only need to be cleaned. If you do need to replace it, you will need to use the same type of valve you have otherwise the leaks will never go away.
There is only one other user-serviceable part of a toilet: the overflow tube. The tube prevents the tank from overfilling by dumping the excess water into the bowl. If it constantly gets submerged, you will need to bend the float ball arm a bit or recheck the seal on the float cap. If this does not solve your leak problem, you will most likely need to call a Chandler Arizona plumber for more extensive toilet repairs. The problem could be under the toilet either at the intake pipe, the outflow pipe, or the wax ring seals that connect them to the toilet. Either way, you will want professional help to get the job right the first time.
No one likes a leaky toilet, but fortunately there are things you can do the fix the problem before calling a Chandler plumber for more expensive toilet repairs. Often the problem is simple and can be fixed immediately. However, you show know your limits and call for professional plumbing help as soon as you need it. Either way will bring your life and toilet back to its normal flow.