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How to Diagnose a Leaking Toilet


Ask any homeowner and they’ll all agree that the last thing they want to do is pay more on monthly utilities like water and electricity. When your toilet is damaged, that’s exactly what you’ll be doing. Have you ever passed by your bathroom only to hear your toilet refilling without anyone using it?

Does it sometimes take longer than usual to flush or refill the tank? These issues may be common among homeowners, but they can still have a major impact on your comfort and your budget.

It’s important to know more about your home, which is why this blog will give you the inside scoop on what may be causing your leaky toilet, and what you can do about it!

The Toilet Flapper Could be The Problem

What is a toilet flapper? The toilet flapper is essentially the barrier between the tank and the actual toilet. When you flush the toilet, the flapper opens, allowing water to rush through into your bowl, creating the pressure needed to flush the toilet. When done, it seals again, giving the tank an opportunity to refill.

These flappers are made to create a seal over that inlet pipe, preventing any wasted water. Unfortunately, they’re often made from rubber or plastic that can deteriorate over time. If you’re noticing leaking water in your bathroom, look for:

  • flapperCracks or breaks in the flapper.
  • Warped look (doesn’t fit properly over the pipe).
  • Dirt or grime buildup.
  • Damaged chain (won’t allow the flapper to open).

In many cases, a leaky toilet stems from an issue with the flapper. Because it’s so common, you can easily find these parts are your local hardware store and replace it with a little DIY know-how.

What Other Issues Cause a Running Toilet?

runningtoiletOutside of the flapper, your toilet could also fall susceptible to other plumbing repair issues. For older bathrooms and homes, a leak in the porcelain is a common cause for concern.

When the toilet itself is leaking, it can cause water damage in your home and will require an immediate replacement. Similarly, the water valve behind the toilet may also be damaged. Over time, the seals on those valves waken, eventually letting water escape with every toilet refill. Finally, there could be a problem with the float inside the toilet tank.

If these floats are not aligned well or are damaged in any way, they could force the fill valve to run continuously, leading to the annoying sound of running water. If you’re not sure where the problem is in your toilet, it’s always a good idea to trust a local plumber instead, it could even be a clogged toilet.

Prevent Disasters, Get Toilet Maintenance

maintainWhether you think about it or not, you use your toilet on a daily basis, so why deal with a damaged one? With regular plumbing and toilet maintenance, you can easily prevent or repair a leaking toilet.

Whether the flapper needs replacing or the entire toilet needs an upgrade, a local pro can help.

For homeowners in Concord, Plumbing Solutions is here to help. We offer detailed toilet plumbing solutions and can keep your home protected. We also offer plenty of helpful tips to our customers, so be sure to subscribe to our blog and give us a call at (925) 250-4102!