Toilet Repair & Installation Services in Jacksonville, Florida

Tracking down a hard-to-find leaking toilet in your home can seem like a nightmare at times, as you try to figure out exactly where it’s coming from and whether it’s the cause of your high water bills and endlessly running toilet. In this post, we’ll discuss how to test your toilet to determine if its leaking.

Signs of a Leaking Toilet

A leaking toilet may or may not have any obvious signs. A high water bill may be all you notice! Here are some symptoms to look for in a toilet in trouble:

  • Is there water on the floor, either in the bathroom or underneath in the basement or crawl space? If your wax ring has failed, it will allow dirty water to leak instead of passing down the pipe. If your floor is wet and the tank or toilet is also wet, it’s probably condensation from the cold surface of the toilet pulling moisture out of humid Florida air and is not from your toilet leaking.

  • Do you have to work the flushing lever so that the toilet stops running? This is often the sign of a poorly fitted flush valve that is not seating correctly when it comes into its resting position.

  • Is a toilet that is not in use still making noises five minutes later? This is a sure sign of a leaking toilet as the tank should have filled in that amount of time.

  • Do you have to hold the handle down to flush the toilet? This particular symptom can also come from a chain or strap that is too long and can’t get the flapper or ball far enough up to float while the tank drains.

  • Another common sign of a leaking toilet is excess water running over the top of the overflow pipe (the upright pipe in the toilet that excess water drains out from)? If so, a leaking refill valve is the culprit.
  • Can you see water flowing or trickling down the inside of the toilet bowl quite a while after it has been flushed?

  • Is water dripping out of the refill tube, falling into the overflow pipe?

  • Is the toilet turning itself on and off without being touched? Known in some places as a phantom flush, it’s caused by a leak out of the tank lowering the water level.

  • If your not experiencing these common leaking toilet symptoms, your system could still be leaking just at a slower rate that is not as easily detectable. The methods to test your toilet listed below will help you find the culprit.

Testing The Toilet

You’ll want a little time for the toilet to sit while you are performing the tests, anywhere from ten minutes to an hour. As you prepare to test your toilet, here’s what you’ll need to gather:

  • Testing dye capsules, food dye, instant coffee or powdered drink mix in a dark color such as grape or cherry Kool-Aid.

  • Pencil.

  • Gloves for handling any solid cleaning product in your tank that can affect the dye (such as blue sanitizing products or bleaching tablets).

If you’re trying to determine whether water is coming from a wax seal or condensation, you’ll also need to dry off the floor using towels or a mop, allowing you to determine exactly where the water is coming from.

Start by carefully removing the top from the toilet tank and setting it aside somewhere where it won’t be broken. Next, shut off the water supply to the toilet and flush it. Wearing your latex or nitrile gloves, remove any products in the tank that affect the color of the water, specifically bleach or dye tablets. Restore the water supply to the tank, then flush it to remove the last traces of dye or bleach from the tank and bowl.

For the next part, take dye capsules, food dye, instant coffee or Kool-Aid and add enough of the product to the tank to get a dark color to the water. Allow the toilet to sit undisturbed for 30 minutes. If any dye appears in the bowl, you’ve got a leak.

If you do have a leak, it’s time to track down where it’s coming from. Take a pencil and draw a line to mark where the top of the water is in your toilet tank. Then shut off the water supply for 20-30 minutes. If the water has dropped below the line, the flush valve at the bottom center of the tank is the culprit. If it has remained the same, the refill valve attached to the water supply is to blame.

What to do With Your Results

Now that you’ve had the opportunity to test your toilet and discover the cause of your problems, you’ll need to either adjust or replace parts. If the chain or strap leading to the flush lever is not the right length or the refill valve sits too high, adjust them. If the flush valve, refill valve or wax ring are faulty, it’s time to replace them.

Call A Professional

We all have specialties that require different knowledge, and if you aren’t comfortable undertaking a toilet repair project on your home, that’s okay! Our highly trained professional plumbers at Bill Fenwick Plumbing are happy to help with all your plumbing needs. We offer plumbing services such as backflow inspections, water line repair, drain cleaning, garbage disposal repair, and sewer line installation in Jacksonville, Florida. We’re proud to be an Angie’s List contractor providing 24 hour emergency service to the Jacksonville area since 1969. Contact us today for help with your plumbing needs!

Toilet Repair & Install Services in Jacksonville, Florida

Call Us: (904) 724-2455

If your toilet leaking in your home? To prevent water damage to your flooring or drywall, schedule a toilet repair or replacement appointment with our team.