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How to Fix a Running Toilet

July 8, 2019
July 8, 2019 admin

Almost every homeowner or renter has a few essential tools on hand to cope with minor plumbing emergencies. Sometimes a clogged toilet or slow drain may need a little elbow grease and a plunger to work as intended. If you’re handy around the house, you can generally tackle a small repair such as changing out a worn washer or replacing a drain cover. However, bigger plumbing repair jobs need professional attention.

We’ve all had toilet issues once before. Whether it be a constant trickle of water or a dreaded clogged toilet, it’s easier than you think to fix it. The following page is a guide to fixing the two most common issues you might have with your toilet.

Before tackling any repair, turn off the water main. Dress to get wet. Even if you’re careful, plumbing maintenance and repair is a messy task. When possible, take parts to be replaced to the hardware store with you to be sure you’re buying the right item.

Keep a professional plumber’s number handy. You may not need the number, but if you snap off a valve and have a geyser in your kitchen, you’ll be glad you kept it near your phone.

Remember: If the problem persists it may be best to contact your plumber.

Our team offers same-day and emergency services. If you’re feeling stuck, we’re here to help. Give us a call!

A Running Toilet:

  • The first thing you need to know is that the fill valve and the inlet valve are the same thing. The outlet valve is the mechanism that allows you to drain the cistern at the push of the button.
  • The outlet at the bottom of the tank may be faulty or worn (not closing properly).
  • Replace the outlet washer, this is not always necessary, but for the couple of dollars that a washer costs, it’s well worth it.
  • Inspect the linkage length of the flush mechanism inside the tank. When not pressed there should be a slight amount of slack in the linkage. If the linkage is taught it may be holding the flapper open and letting water constantly run into the bowl.
  • Adjust the Linkage length by changing the hook position. But don’t leave too much slack in the linkage.
  • The float may be too high, letting water into the overflow pipe which will cause the tank to constantly fill.
  • If the water level is high enough to cause water to spill into the overflow tube, the float is sitting too high and the inlet valve thinks the cistern is never full.
  • Adjust the float height by turning the screw next to the inlet valve a few times, make sure the float is going down, this will lower the water level. It should be approximately 2-3cm below the top of the overflow tube.
  • The float inlet valve may be faulty.
  • If neither of the above solutions work, the inlet valve may be faulty, in this case it is best to replace the entire inlet valve, these are around $38 from a hardware store.

A Clogged Toilet:

  • In most cases, fixing a clogged toilet can be as simple as grabbing the trusty plunger.
  • A drain snake can be used as well if plunging does not solve the issue.
  • To test the toilet, open the lid of the tank and raise the flapper by hand allowing only a small amount of water to flow into the bowl. This will stop the bowl overflowing if the blockage has not been cleared.


Don’t flush the toilet if you are unsure if it’s still clogged as this can result in flooding your bathroom.

So now you know how to save yourself the plumbing bill and fix those little issues yourself! Of course if you’re in any doubt, book a Plumber that believes in Service – at Plumbers Express.

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