Fix That Noisy Toilet Yourself In A Few Hours
If you're accustomed to jiggling the handle on the toilet to get it to stop running, there is likely a simple problem that you can fix yourself. Standard toilet repair kits are available that you can install yourself. With a few simple tools and a couple hours of your time, you can have a quiet toilet again.
Tools and Materials You'll Need
- flat-blade screwdriver
- channel lock pliers
- knife or box cutter
- old rags for cleanup
From the plumbing supplies or home remodeling store:
- toilet repair kit
You may find kits from a couple of different manufacturers. They are all basically the same construction and will work in your toilet.
Removing the Old Toilet Parts
- Turn off the water to the toilet using the shutoff valve near the floor on the wall.
- Flush the toilet and allow it to drain. Remove the lid from the back of the toilet and remove any water with the sponge that didn't drain out.
- Disconnect the water supply line from the bottom of the toilet tank.
- Working inside the toilet tank, remove the chain connecting the flapper valve to the handle. Remove the short rubber tube connecting the flushing mechanism to the inlet tube. Remove the flapper valve from the inlet tube. These components will all be replaced so you can discard them.
- Unscrew the large plastic nut from the bottom of the tank that holds the flushing mechanism in place. Pull the flushing mechanism up out of the tank and discard.
- Wipe the inside of the tank out with special attention around the openings at the bottom of the tank. This helps the seals on the new parts to prevent any leaking after you've installed them.
Installing the Toilet Kit
- Place the large rubber washer on the bottom of the flushing mechanism then place the end of the tube through the hole in the bottom of the toilet tank. Secure with the large plastic nut until snug.
- Turn the flushing mechanism until the small water return tube is aligned with the large inlet tube already in the tank. Tighten the plastic nut on the flushing mechanism until hand-tight.
- Find the small rubber tube included in the kit that connects the flushing mechanism water outlet to the top of the large inlet tube. Trim this tube and connect the two parts so the tube has no kinks or bends.
- Attach the new flapper valve to the base of the inlet tube.
- Attach the chain or plastic cord to the flapper valve and toilet flushing handle.
- Connect the water supply line to the portion of the flushing mechanism sitting below the tank.
- Turn on the water and let the tank fill while looking for leaks under the tank.
- Flush the toilet and adjust the chain or plastic cord so the toilet flushes easily and the flapper valve seats securely in the drain.
Problems You May Encounter
- Your toilet has no water shutoff valve - You'll have to find the water shutoff for the house and turn the water off there before working on the toilet. Have one of the local plumbing services install a shutoff valve in your bathroom to make future maintenance easier.
- You can't get the water supply line off of the bottom of the toilet - If your plumbing is old and you still have a metal supply line, it may be corroded and stuck on the toilet. You'll need a plumber to cut off the water line and install a new flexible supply tube.
For additional help, or if you just don't feel up to the task yourself, contact Roto-Rooter or another plumbing service in your area.