Why Your Toilet Won’t Stop Running

Is your toilet running constantly? If it is, it may be wasting gallons
of water every day which can dramatically increase your monthly water
bill. Luckily, there are simple fixes to most problems causing the water
to run constantly that don’t require a professional, or even tools.

How Does My Toilet Work?

The first step to fixing your toilet is understanding how it works. After
flushing your toilet, the tank is refilled through a fill tube, lifting
a float that will shut off the incoming flow of water once it reaches
a certain level, while a flapper connected to the float by a chain seals
off the tank from the toilet bowl. In order to figure out why your toilet
won’t stop running, you’re going to want to check each of
these components to ensure that all of them are working as intended. Before
you do anything, you’ll need to remove the lid off of your toilet’s
tank and prepare to get your hands wet.

  • Check the flapper. A very common issue that could be causing your toilet to constantly run
    is that the flapper may not be closing all the way. Fixing this could
    be as easy as reaching down and pushing it all the way closed. If you’re
    lucky, that’s all you’ll need to do to fix the problem.
  • Replacing the flapper. If simply pushing it down doesn’t fix the problem, you may need
    to replace the flapper altogether. To remove it, flush your toilet in
    order to completely drain the tank. Unhook it from the base of your tank
    and from the chain and pull it out. Before rushing to the store to buy
    a replacement, first check for any discoloration, mineral deposits, breaks
    in the plastic or rubber, or warping. If the problem is buildup on the
    flapper, a simple clean should fix your issue. If there’s a problem
    with the flapper itself, you’re going to need to get a replacement.
    Once you’ve picked a new one up, simply reattach the chain and hook
    it to the base of your tank.
  • Check the chain. If the chain connecting the flush lever to the flapper is either too long
    or too short, it may be the culprit behind your problems. Jiggle the lever
    to check the length; if it’s too short, it will pull up the flapper
    with minimal movement, and prevent a proper seal from being formed; if
    it’s too long, then it may interfere with the flapper closing at
    all. If you find that the chain is too long, simply move the clip down
    to shorten it. If it’s too short, you will need to replace it with
    a longer one. Make sure you know how long the chain you need is, otherwise
    you may accidentally buy the wrong length, necessitating a return trip
    to the store.
  • Check the fill tube. This tube runs from the fill valve to the overflow tube, and it channels
    enough water through the overflow tube to refill the toilet bowl between
    flushes. Make sure it’s properly connected to the fill valve, and
    make sure it’s properly positioned in the overflow tube. You’ll
    want to flush the toilet with the tank lid still off to make sure the
    water stream is going down the overflow tube.
  • Check the float. If it’s positioned too low, your tank won’t fill enough to
    produce a proper flush; if it’s positioned too high, water can spill
    over into the overflow tube, preventing the fill valve from turning off.
    In newer toilets, you simply need to slide a clip or turn a screw to readjust
    its height, but in older toilets you may need to bend a brass rod connected
    to the float. You want to position it about an inch below the critical
    level marked on the fill valve.

If none of these solutions worked for you, it may be time to call the professionals.
At bluefrog Plumbing + Drain, we’re available 24 hours a day, 7
days a week, and 365 days a year in order to best cater to your needs.
Our plumbers have a reputation for excellence, and have zero trip or overtime
charges. Call us today at 888-794-0341 to set up your free in-home
evaluation to receive a price quote.

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