Fixing a Leaky Toilet

Fix a Leaky Toilet

Did you know that your toilet accounts for almost 40% of the water you use indoors? This means that those toilet leaks can waste lots of water and cause higher water bills.  A silent toilet water leak can waste more than 50 gallons of water a day.  If you think you have a toilet leak, try these suggestions to see if you can easily fix the leak yourself, or call a plumber.

To test your toilet for leaks, remove the lid of the toilet tank.  Drop one leak detecting dye tablet (or food coloring) into the tank and wait 15 minutes.  If color appears in the toilet bowl, then you have a leak.  One of the most common culprits of leaks is the flapper or flush valve.

Before attempting to fix the toilet leak first drain your toilet tank.  Turn off the water inlet at the base of the toilet and then flush the tank.  Soak up the excess water in the tank with a sponge.  Then check the following parts:

Flapper or Flush Valves:

Your flapper or flush valve may not be seating properly on the valve seat, or it may need replacement.  This is typically the cause of running toilets.  Over time, the valve’s rubber material deteriorates because it is constantly under water.  If you gently rub the valve and get streaks on your fingers, you should replace the valve now.

To Fix:

Check the valve seat for corrosion and clean it if necessary.  Turn the water inlet back on and try flushing.  If the flush valve still won’t seat properly, check the wire that connects it to the handle to see if it may be misaligned.  Adjust this to make sure the flush valve falls easily into place.

If the flapper or flush valve seems worn or in poor shape, try replacing it. You should be able to find a replacement in most home improvement departments.  Simple do-it-yourself installation instructions should be on the packaging.

*Don’t take on toilet repairs unless you fell quiet confident in your ability to make these repairs.  The Clackamas River Water Providers will not be responsible for any damage to your toilet because of faulty repairs.  For leak detection tablets please contact us 503-723-3511.

For everything you have ever wanted to know about toilets check out the toiletology website at .