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What are the Best Tips for Toilet Bowl Repair?

Keith Koons
Keith Koons

Hiring a professional for toilet bowl repair is often an unnecessary expense since almost all of the internal parts can be replaced by an amateur handyman within 10 to 15 minutes. Some of the more common problems, like a poorly-fitting flapper valve or a broken flush arm, simply need to be removed and replaced. Other times the problem is even easier to fix, maybe only requiring a few minor adjustments of a screw, hose, or clamp. There are also situations where the toilet will fail to work properly because it is not tightly secured to the floor; these types of cases usually require replacement of the wax ring. Each of these toilet bowl repair problems is relatively minor and only requires a screwdriver and a pair of pliers.

If the water is constantly running into the toilet, individuals can check and ensure that the rubber flapper is making a proper seal with the bottom of the toilet. Often what happens is that small particles of dirt or debris build up around the perimeter of it and a proper seal can not be made. Individuals can start by wiping off the underside with a towel. As the flapper is released, it should fall down and stick to the bottom of the toilet to entrap the water; if it does not, then users can replace it for a low cost.

The first step of toilet bowl repair is draining the water out of the toilet.
The first step of toilet bowl repair is draining the water out of the toilet.

Another problem could be that the water is flowing into the toilet so quickly that a proper seal can not be established. If this is the problem, individuals can reduce the water pressure by turning the shutoff valve towards the off position. Other times, it may be that the cord connecting the flapper and the flush arm is simply too loose or too tight—adjusting it to the proper length will solve this problem.

When the toilet is taking too long to flush, the entire flushing mechanism may be incorrectly set or broken. Before heading off to the hardware store, individuals can make sure that the installed unit does not have a manual screw adjustment on the actual float. If it does, individuals can grab a screwdriver and see if reducing or increasing the amount of water that is stored in the tank fixes the problem. Another common toilet bowl repair issue is the lack of force generated when the toilet is flushed; this either means that not enough water is stored within the toilet or that the wax seal has been damaged. To replace the wax ring, individuals can simply drain all of the water, remove the nuts and bolts holding the toilet in place, and then lift off the wax ring beneath it.

If this does not solve the toilet bowl repair problem, it may be better just to replace everything. Individuals can purchase a complete toilet bowl repair kit, which cost around $15 to 20 US Dollars (USD), and shut off the water line that supplies the toilet and drain 100% of the water out. Next, individuals can use a wrench to loosen the plastic bolt that holds the water regulator in place and remove the entire mechanism, then install the new one the same way or by following the instructions printed on the packaging. Once the flapper is installed and the proper water level is determined, the toilet is essentially new again.

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    • The first step of toilet bowl repair is draining the water out of the toilet.
      By: foto76
      The first step of toilet bowl repair is draining the water out of the toilet.