Every year thousands of gallons of water are lost in homes due to water leaks, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. Different leaks such as toilet leakages, leaking taps, and leaking valves can cost you thousands of dollars. Besides saving water, knowing how to fix a leaky toilet can save you hundreds of dollars on plumbing repairs and make you a household hero at the same time. Knowing how to repair a leak is something that every property owner needs to know. It may seem daunting, and repairing toilets might seem out of your ability, but you can learn.
Detecting The Leak
Before you set out to repair the leak, you will first need to find out where the leak is. Finding a leak is simple enough, provided that you know how to go about it. When you look within the tank, you will find two valves – the refill and flush valve. You will find other parts also like the float arm that has the float mounted on it and also the flush ball. If you look at the parts for a minute, you will figure out the fundamental functions of a toilet when flushed.
Most leakages are caused if the two valves cannot perform effectively. When water is overflowing the tank, it is probably because the refill valve has failed. When the flush valve is the reason behind the leak, water in the tank continuously runs into the bowl.
To check if the flush valve is causing the leak, just shut down the water source to the toilet. This can be located to the left of the toilet. Once it is turned off, mark the water level of the tank and examine it back in an hour to find out if that water level has changed. In case the level has dropped, then the flush valve is the problem. When the refill valve is leaky, you will find out from the water flowing over the tank. Once you find the cause of the leak, all it requires is a couple of minutes to perform a basic repair.
Toilet Flush Valve Repair
Every time a toilet is flushed you will see a valve called a flapper that opens up to let fresh water into the toilet bowl. Simultaneously, the fresh water pushes out the waste water down the toilet drain.
Over time, these flappers can break down and lose a good seal between the toilet tank and the bowl. Water will continuously leak into the bowl as well as the toilet will have to constantly run to refill the water loss inside the tank.
To find out if a broken flush is a cause, simply press down on the flapper to determine if the toilet halts flowing. If it stops flowing, all you should do is change the flapper.
Toilet Refill Valve Repair
The fresh water is stored in the toilet tank and whenever you push the flush handle, you will open the valve that lets the fresh water into the bowl. When fresh water leaves the toilet tank, it must be replaced. Inside the toilet tank, there will be a fill valve that has a float mounted on it. This float is made to the fill valve at a specified point if the toilet tank is filled.
The float may be a big plastic ball or even a small cylinder-shaped plastic ball that floats up and down a plastic tube. Under typical running circumstances the float will ride on the surface of the water and whenever the water level reaches the ideal height inside the tank the float which is attached to the fill valve will shut the water off. In case the float is stuck instead of floating freely on the water, then it cannot shut the fill valve and the toilet continues to work. Another problem with the float may be if it is out of alignment. On a ball float, you will see it is attached to the fill valve via a metal rod or adjustable plastic rod. You can attempt to alter this rod so the float will fully close the fill valve if it gets to the top of the toilet tank.
If the float is free and still the toilet remains to be working, then you may have a malfunctioning fill valve. The best way to fix a fill valve is a full replacement.
While these remedies fix most of the prevalent toilet leakages, homeowners should know that the leak can be the consequence of other causes. Another cause is a leaky wax seal. If you think the toilet leak is allowing water under the toilet floor tile or should it be present under the toilet, you need to seek the help of a specialist. Simple repairs can be done to avoid the leak, and knowing how to achieve that will go a long way.