Nothing is quite as annoying—or as wasteful—as a toilet that seems to constantly be refilling itself with water. Fortunately, you can likely fix this problem without having to hire a plumber to do it for you. If you would like to learn more about DIY home plumbing repair, read on. This article will discuss two factors that may be behind a toilet that won't stop running.
Perhaps the most common cause of a constantly running toilet is an incorrect water level. You see, when the water in the tank gets too high, it begins to spill over into the overflow tube. When this happens, the fill valve will be triggered to open, thus allowing more water into the tank and perpetuating the unwanted cycle. The good news is that eliminating this issue involves little more than making a quick adjustment to your float valve.
The appropriate fix here depends on what style of float valve your toilet contains. Old-fashioned ballcock floats—those with round rubber balls located at the tip of a metal rod—have a dedicated adjustment screw at the hinged end of the rod. Turning the screw clockwise lowers the water level in the tank. Be aware that it should only take a fraction of a turn to achieve the desired results.
Newer toilets contain a type of float valve known as a cylinder float. This type of valve consists of a plastic ring that moves up and down the shaft of the fill valve. To adjust the setting of a cylinder valve, look for a spring clip protruding from the top of the float. This spring is attached to a metal rod; by pinching the spring, you can move the rod up or down to change the fill setting. In order to lower the fill level, you'll want to move the rod down a small amount.
With the lid of your toilet tank removed, you should be able to easily find the fill tube. This small rubber hose runs between the fill valve and the overflow pipe. It's job is to move water into the overflow pipe, and thus refill the toilet bowl each time it is flushed.
The problem here is that, thanks to the pressure of the water flowing through it, over time the fill tube is liable to work loose from its mounting point. A fill tube that has fallen down into the tank causes it to refill over and over by siphoning away water. Luckily, all you need to do is ensure that the fill tube is attached to the fill valve—usually by means of a small metal clip—and oriented so as to direct water into the overflow pipe.
If your toilet is still running, or if you don't feel comfortable performing these repairs on your own, contact a plumber at a company like Dependable Plumbing.