Someone Go Shake the Handle!

The DIYer

 If a common thing to hear in your home is “someone go shake the handle,” then you've got a running toilet. This week I will tell you how to fix it. The first thing you’ll need to do is determine why it keeps running.

Here are some of the things you need to check (in this order), and how to fix them.

1- Remove the lid and look at the overflow tube (that is a tall tube coming up from where the flap valve is mounted). If the water is below the top of the tube, go to step 2. If the water is going over the top of the tube, you will need to adjust the float. This is usually done by turning an adjustment screw on the flushometer.

2- Check the chain going to the flap valve. The chain shouldn’t be tight or too loose; it should have just a little play in it. If not, adjust it as needed.

3- Check the flap valve, see if it is sitting flush on the opening or free of signs of wear. If the answer to either of these is no, change the flap valve.

4- Check the flushometer. It should fully stop allowing water from filling when the float is lifted and should allow water to fill when the float is always down. Also check for signs of age (plastic dried out, fill hose has cracks, etc). If the flushometer is not functioning 100 percent, replace it.

Note: When replacing any parts on your toilet, the new parts should have instructions with them, follow them carefully. Also whenever replacing any part on your toilet, be sure to shut the water off first. never work on a toilet while the water is on!


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