Toilets are one of the simplest and most reliable fixtures in the house. The relatively few moving parts mean that they have very little chance of mechanical plumbing failure and the durability of their construction makes them highly dependable.
Still, a toilet can develop minor plumbing problems with the most likely being a insufficiently sealed stopper that lets water run continually into the drain. In other cases, the float valve is situated to high in the tank and water drains into the overflow pipe. Other problems are easily remedied.
In almost all modern toilets, a small plastic, rubber rimmed device called a stopper seals the entry to the drain and holds the water in the tank. Age, use or faulty construction will cause the seal to be imperfect and water will slowly drain out of the opening.
Seal stopper replacement is actually quite simple.
- Turn off the water to the toilet and flush to remove the water from the tank.
- Then, remove the old stopper by pulling it off of the base. There are usually two small protrusion that hold the stopper in place. A small amount of pressure will easily dislodge them.
- Next, replace with a new stopper and turn on the water.
- Check to see that the mechanism functions properly and you are done.
Adjusting the float valve is just as easy.
- The float valve is attached to a metal rod that controls the flow of water into the toilet tank. Moving it forward or backwards on the rod will determine how full the tank gets between flushes.
- Sometimes the valve is accidentally moved and the water level is adjusted to above the height of the overflow pipe. In these cases, the water will continue to flow as the valve never reaches the cut off height. Simply adjust the valve so that it turns off at a lower height and the problem ads fixed.
Both problems are easily fixed, but if you do not have the tools, time or inclination to fix them yourself, a professional plumber can repair them for the price of a service call. In addition, they will take a look at your fixture and identify any potential problems saving you the cost of a future plumbing service call.