Fixing a Running Toilet

By admin | Toilet

Have you ever heard the trickling sound of water coming from your toilet 24-hours a day and 7 days a week or a soft hiss of water floating over to your ears? If you have, then it means you‘ve encountered a severe case of running toilet.

When the toilet runs, it is due to the water leaking into the toilet bowl from the toilet tank. This water is the cause of producing bothersome trickling sound. The same water causes a hissing sound when it flows through the pipes for refilling the toilet tank. Fixing a Running Toilet

But it’s not just the water noise, but the real and more serious problem is, the gallons of water that is wasted every day because of a running toilet.

Toilet won’t flush and How to Fix Them

Reasons behind a Leaking Toilet:

  • An aging or defective flapper.
  • If a tank ball is unable to sit properly against the flush valve that is between the tank and bowl.
  • The level of water rising too high in the toilet tank and it starts spilling in the overflow tube.

Detecting a Running Toilet:

The trickling or hissing sounds are the signs that hint the leaking of water. Along with these sounds, if the ball cock refills the tank again and again before the level of water drops, the probability of having a leaking toilet is high.


First off, you need to discover the problematic area. Is it the flush valve or the overflow tube? To discover it, simply remove the tank lid and observe the overflow tube. If the tank is filled and the water is above the top of the overflow tube so that some of it is spilling into it, then it is the main issue.

For testing flush valve, add a few drops of food coloring into the tank water. After a few minutes, check the bowl water. If the color has reached it, the flapper is leaking.

Solutions to fix a running toilet:

Moving on to the solutions, there are a number of things that one can do to tackle the particular issue.

  • If your toilet’s flushing mechanism has an older-style float ball, lift the float ball above the level of water. If this results in shutting off the water flow, bend the wire that is holding the float ball a little downward so that water shuts off sooner before its level reaches above the top of the overflow tube.
  • If the float ball leaks and gets filled with water, it does not float properly. This issue is common in old toilets. To solve it, turn off the supply valve behind the toilet and flush it to empty the tank. Then lift the float ball. If it feels full, replace it with a new float ball. If it’s not the float ball, the toilet has a pressure activated ball cock, lower the level of water a little by turning the adjustment screw on the valve.
  • If the source of leakage is the flush valve, the fast and most common way to deal with it is by simply jiggling the flush handle. Most of the times it reseats flapper or float-ball.
  • Sometimes the mechanism holding the older-style flush valve becomes misaligned. Make sure that the tank ball can move freely over the flush valve by wiggling it. If it doesn’t, polish it with some steel wool. Also, make sure all the wires are properly connected.

About the Author

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