As homeowners, we all know the number of challenges that our plumbing systems can present with. From leaks and cracked pipes, to clogs and yes, phantom flushing the problems can be many. Toilet leaks typically result in wasted water, sometimes as much as 200 gallons of water per day. When your toilet periodically refills itself, the problem usually lies with the fill valve of the toilet or the flapper valve itself. This spontaneous flushing is dubbed as phantom flushing.
WHAT CAUSES A LEAK?
When you flush your toilet, the flapper valve rises and allows the water within your tank to now flow into the toilet bowl providing the water needed to flush. When there is a leak in or near to the flapper valve it is typically due to damage to the flapper itself. When the flapper valve is worn or damaged it can no longer seat properly within the tank causing a leak. In addition, if the chain in the toilet tank is not properly adjusted, this too can result in a leak.
Phantom flushing can result from a faulty fill valve or a fill valve that is not properly adjusted. With that said, the team here at Steve Mull Plumbing wants to share with our valued clients how to test your toilet for a leak and determine the cause of the leak.
- · Testing for a toilet leak – This test is remarkably easy to perform. Simply take a few drops of food coloring and drop them into your toilet tank. Wait approximately 15-20 minutes and see if there is now the same food coloring in the toilet bowl itself. If you can view the food coloring in the bowl a leak has been confirmed.
- · Inspect and check the fill valve – The water level in the toilet tank should be near to one inch below the top portion of the toilet’s overflow tube. If the fill valve is not adjusted properly or if it is performing poorly, the water will be allowed to rise above the required level. When the water rises it flows into the overflow tube and ultimately causes wasted water.
- Typically, a fill valve can be easily adjusted with a float clip or a simple screw adjustment. When performing the screw adjustment, you will need to turn the screw counterclockwise to lower the overall water level on the toilet fill valve. If the fill valve has a float clip, simply pinch the clip to release it and slide it downward. Each of these adjustments is rather simple to perform. If you do take on the task yourself, but find that the adjustment does not stop the existing leak, then you may require a fill valve replacement. If so, simply give a shout out to one of our team and we will take care of your plumbing repairs and needs.
- · Inspect the flapper valve – When you have a leaking flapper valve, water is allowed to leak out of the toilet tank into the toilet bowl, which will cause the tank to spontaneously refill with new water. Phantom flushing is the tank filling up again and not the toilet actually flushing. One reason why this can occur is the chain on your flapper valve may be too short causing the valve to inappropriately close. You can resolve this problem by adding one or two links to the length of the chain that is connected between your flapper valve and flush handle. Once you have completed the adjustment to the chain, be sure to rerun your water color test. If you are still faced with the problem, be sure to contact the pros here at Steve Mull Plumbing.
THE PROFESSIONALS YOU CAN ALWAYS TRUST
Here at Steve Mull Plumbing our team of highly skilled and experienced professionals is committed to providing all our valued clients with top-of-the-line plumbing products and services. Whether you have an issue with phantom flushing, clogged or frozen pipes, or any other plumbing issue you may have, trust the pros here at Steve Mull Plumbing.