11 Most Common Toilet Problems & Solutions

The toilet is not very complex machines, and it doesn’t take any rocket science to fix if any problem comes up with them.

However, there obviously can be a bit complex situation where you will have to call the maintenance guys, but usually, the most common problems have easy remedies that can be solved immediately by the homeowners themselves.

Solving the common toilet problems on our own does not only save us a decent amount of time, but it also lets us save quite an amount of time.

So, here in this article, we will tell you about some mainstream toilet problems that you could come across and how to fix them easily.

However, you first need to have a basic idea about the way it works to solve the problems.

How Does It Work?

There are two parts of the toilet — the bowl that rests upon the floor and the tank that holds the water till you flush it.

As soon as you hit the button on the tank, water starts rushing down, forcing the water out of the bowl, making its way to sewers.

The tank further consists of two parts — namely, the flush valve and the refill valve.

As the name suggests, the refill valve deals with filling the water in the tank and automatically keeps the water in the tank to a certain level.

The flush valve deals with draining the water.

1. Water Running After Flushing

If your toilet continues to run even after the flush cycle is completed, something is probably wrong with the refill valve.

This could be due to the high water level in the tank, and if that is the case, you can fix it by bending the float arm a bit downwards.

This is sometimes referred to as ‘fine-tuning’ and can be done very easily to prevent the flush leaking toilet tank.

However, if it’s not the problem, you can easily replace your ballcock with a modernized float-cup valve style which is more immune to problems.

2. Tank Not Refilling

The flush valve consists of a rubber ball or a float ball and is attached to the bottom opening of the tank.

When the button is depressed, it pulls the flapper away from the valve seat to let the water flow. As it gets empty, the valve seat comes back to its place to let the tank refill.

So, one problem could be the button going downward and not returning, keeping the tank to be filled up. This can be fixed by checking the wire that’s connecting the button to the valve seat.

The other could be the valve seat not opening up, which could again be checked easily if some debris is preventing it from being lifted.

3. Loose Flush Handle

This is often a frustrating problem but what people don’t realize easily is that it’s a relatively easy thing to get rid of.

First, check the wire connected to the valve seat and see if it’s broken, fix it if that’s the problem.

There is a nut to handle mounting inside the tank. It can loosen up, which in turn causes the handle to get loose.

Tighten it up by rotating the threads of it in a counter-clockwise movement.

4. Fixing Leaks At The Toilet Base

Unlike the majority of the common toilet problems, this initiates at the bottom of the toilet rather than the tank.

There is a wax ring, sealing the base of the toilet, which is often the cause of this problem.

The only way to fix it, taking the toilet out and replacing the wax ring.

This may sound like it, but it’s not actually very hard, but you can always get the help of a plumber if you don’t feel like it.

5. Clogged Toilet

This is another common problem to which people unnecessarily call a plumber which they shouldn’t.

The work is easy, and you need to have a toilet plunger with an internal cup. This should be enough to handle any clogging.

However, there may be times when this doesn’t work. Then, you can use a drain snake tool that is specialized for hard clogs, often referred to as toilet auger.

6. Running Toilet

This phenomenon indicates that there is something wrong with the tank. Either the toilet flapper is not seating correctly letting the water out, or the water level is too high.

In both cases, the fixes are easy. You can adjust the refill valve to make the water level lower or if its the flapper that causing it, you can easily adjust it as well or in case of that not working as well, replace it.

7. Bowl Emptying Slowly

Also known as a weak flush, is often caused by holes under the rim of the bowl that gets clogged.

Clearing out those holes will easily help you get rid of it.

Just use something sharp enough like a piece of wire, and as soon as you unclog these holes, you’ll be good to go.

8. Leaking Seals

On average, a toilet has five seals, all of which have an equal probability of going bad, causing them to leak.

The obvious approach here is first to identify which seal is leaking then tightening it or if that doesn’t work out, replacing it altogether.

We already talked about one of them previously in our 4th point.

9. Weak Flusher

Some older tanks have a technical problem which causes them to flush slowly, which is often very annoying. This is caused by the water deposition in siphon jet holes or bowl rim holes.

They can be cleaned out by wood-sticks, large toothpicks, or by using acid, which is recommended.

However, the problem is bound to repeat itself, and the only way to get rid of it is to get a modernized toilet.

10. Whistling Tank Fill

Causes by older models of toilets where ballcock valves have ball float at the end of the rod.

When the valves start to close, the ball starts to float higher, which generates a significant amount of vibrations resulting if whistling sounds that bothers many people.

The only solution is to get a refill valve that stays wide open until the tank is filled.

11. Suction Sounds In The Tub And Sink

You often hear gurgling sounds or like something is getting sucked up when you flush your toilet.

Well, it is caused by partial or full blockage of the vent pipe of the toilet. This can be caused quite easily by debris in it.

Firstly, you have to identify the clog; this can be done by using a flashlight securely attached to a string to it doesn’t fall into the pipe.

Once spotted, you can use a hose to clear out the vent pipe.

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