First determine the cause of the problem.
1. Is no water running into the toilet? If you try flushing and no water runs into the toilet bowl, check the water level in the tank. It should be within about 1/2 inch of the top of the overflow pipe. The overflow pipe is the big vertical tube in the tank. If the water level isn’t high enough, parts inside the tank may need replacement. You can buy these at a hardware store. If you aren’t sure of how to do this, just give us a call and we can easily do the job for you.
2. If water doesn’t run into the bowl and the water level in the tank is high enough, try dumping a bucket of water into the bowl. If this clears out your toilet, the water inlet to the toilet is probably blocked (located inside the rim of the toilet).
If you use a blue cleaning disc it may be jamming the flow of water. Taking care not to damage the porcelain, break up the jammed disc with a screwdriver or similar tool. Even if you can’t remove all of the disc, your toilet should start working again. The remains of the disc will dissolve over time.
Another possibility is that hard water has created mineral deposits which are blocking an inlet inside the rim. Being careful not to scratch the porcelain, use a nail or something similar to clean out the mineral build-up.
3. If water is running into the toilet and the bowl is filling up without draining, you have a clogged drain. See Drain Is Clogged for more information.
Toilet Runs Continuously
If your toilet just keeps running, open the tank and check the chain that hangs down vertically and attaches to the rubber “flapper” at the bottom. The chain should be taut. If it’s loose and you’re handy, you can shorten it by removing some links with some needle-nose pliers.
Toilet Tank Leaks
Sometimes water leaks from the tank into the bowl. This wastes water and money. At least once a year, check for leaks. Drop a small amount of food coloring into the tank. Check back a half hour later. If the toilet bowl water is colored, the tank is leaking. Some parts in the tank may need replacement.
Toilet Leaks at the Base
If water is leaking around the base of your toilet, check to see if the toilet has shifted. Shifting can break down the wax seal, allowing water to seep out under the toilet.
If the toilet has shifted, you can sit on it and try twisting it back into position. If that doesn’t work, you may need to have the wax ring replaced on your toilet.
Remember, if none of these actions fix the problem that you’re having with your toilet, we can easily take care of it for you. And if it’s needed, we can replace your old toilet with a new one.