The toilets in your home probably get a lot of use each day. However, your toilet shouldn’t constantly run even with extensive flushing. The water should quit running within a few minutes of you flushing your toilet. If you have noticed that the water in your toilet is constantly running in between flushes, there is some sort of problem that needs to be addressed. Here are some of the most common reasons why your toilet might keep running.
The Flapper Isn’t Completely Closing
The toilet flapper is a round piece of rubber that lets water go in and out of your toilet each time it’s flushed. If the toilet flapper isn’t functioning properly, neither will your toilet. One of the most common reasons why a toilet keeps running is that the flapper isn’t closing completely. This often happens when the flapper is worn and can no longer create a proper seal. You can check to see if this is occurring by using your finger to lightly press on the flapper. If the water stops running, then the flapper may need to be replaced. You should also inspect the flapper to see if there’s any buildup that’s keeping it from creating a seal. If there is, you may just need to clean it in order to get your toilet to stop running.
You Need a Shorter Refill Tube
If you’ve replaced the components inside of your toilet tank recently and noticed that your toilet won’t stop running, it may be caused by your refill tube. If this tube is too long, then your toilet will continuously run. This is because the water will keep going from the tank to your toilet’s overflow valve. You can easily fix this problem just by replacing the refill tube with a shorter one. Since refill tubes come in different sizes, you need to make sure that you choose one that’s the right length in order to avoid the water continuously draining out of it.
The Float Needs to Be Set Lower
Once you open up the lid on your toilet’s tank, you should notice a round ball floating on the top of the water. This is called the float and will make the toilet stop running once the water inside of the tank is at the right level. If the float is set to where it’s too high, it will be above the level of the water, and this will cause your toilet to continuously run. You can change the height of the float ball by locating the screw that’s located near the fill valve and unscrewing it. Once you adjust the float ball to the appropriate level, you will need to tighten the screw. You may have to adjust the float ball a few times in order to determine the right height for it. If you are having a difficult time because the float arm is bent, you will need to replace it.
The Chain Is Too Long or Too Short
The toilet chain is attached to the toilet lever and the flapper valve. When you push on the handle to flush the toilet, the chain pulls on the flapper valve to lift it up and release the water into the toilet bowl. If it’s too short, then it won’t be able to fully close. This will cause the water to keep draining out of the tank. The only way to fix this issue is to replace the chain with a longer one so that the flapper valve can close completely. If the chain is too long, it can get stuck in between the drain valve and the flapper. This will keep it from fully closing. In order to fix it, you can simply shorten it. Fortunately, this is a simple repair that can be completed in just a couple of minutes.
A Broken Chain
Not only can the chain be too long or too short, but it can completely break apart as well. This often occurs when the chain starts to rust due to its age. While chains are made to last a long time, they will eventually need to be replaced. If your chain looks rusty or is broken in two, it’s time to replace it.
A Cracked Float Valve
The float valve is the component in the tank that’s responsible for allowing water to fill it. This is why it needs to be in proper working order at all times. However, since it’s made out of plastic, it can start to deteriorate over time. When this happens, it can crack and cause your toilet to run continuously. The only way to fix the float valve is to replace it. Fortunately, this part is fairly cheap and can be replaced pretty quickly. You should be able to see if there is a crack in it just by inspecting it. If it has deteriorated significantly, you may even be able to see pieces of it that have broken off floating in the water as well.
There’s a Water Leak
There can be some sort of water leak that’s causing your toilet to continuously run. Look around the base of the toilet and the supply line that runs from the wall to the bowl. If there is some sort of leak, you may be able to see moisture on the floor or rust around the shut-off valve. You might be able to fix the leak by changing the seal on your toilet. If the leak is caused by an issue with the supply line, this can be rather complex as the lines may need to be replaced. No matter what the cause of the leak is, you do need to fix it right away. If you don’t, it will continue worse and can cause a lot of water damage even if the leak appears to be small. A water leak can wind up damaging the flooring and even the walls.
A Worn Gasket
Between the toilet bowl and the tank, there is a gasket. If it starts to wear out, water will keep running from the tank into the bowl. You can see if this is happening by watching the water levels in both your bowl and the tank. If you notice that water keeps running into the bowl while the levels in the tank keep diminishing, a worn gasket may be what’s causing it. In order to replace the gasket, you will need to remove a few nuts and bolts to get to the washer. Once you are able to locate the washer, you can simply remove the old one and put another one in its place.
If you have noticed that one of your toilets keeps running, you should get it fixed right away in order to avoid high water bills. A constantly running toilet can waste gallons of water every single day. This type of issue doesn’t tend to get better on its own. Fortunately, Tarpy Plumbing, Heating & Air can help you. We can fix a variety of different plumbing issues in and around the San Diego area. We can help you figure out why your toilet keeps running and get it fixed for you as soon as possible. Contact Tarpy Plumbing, Heating & Air today to learn more about our heating, cooling, plumbing, insulation, ductwork and inspection services.