03 Mar. 22

Chicago Plumbing 101: Repairing Your Running Toilet

For more than a decade, Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer has been the #1 residential service plumber on Chicago’s Northwest Side offering the finest toilet plumbing homeowners can get in Chicagoland. As the highest rated residential service plumber, we’re well-suited to helping you with minor plumbing problems you have around the house. But we’re also a family-owned and operated company dedicated to helping our customers save money so we’re happy to share plumbing tips with you – like how to repair a running toilet.

That’s what we’re going to discuss in this article so sit back and get ready to learn a little something about repairing a running toilet in another edition of Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer’s Chicago Plumbing 101. If you’re still uncomfortable with the process after you complete this article just call (773) 633-6139 for the best toilet plumbing on Chicago’s Northwest Side!

Before You Get Started Gather Up Your Tools & Supplies

Just like with any project you undertake it’s going to take some tools to repair a running toilet in your Northwest Side home. Nothing you’ll need is outside the norm for most homeowners though you may need to go get a hacksaw if that becomes necessary. It might and you’re never going to regret having a hacksaw in your house. But to be clear here’s everything you’re going to need to properly repair a running toilet in your Northwest Side home:

  • Pipe Wrench
  • Pair of Pliers
  • Hacksaw
  • Ruler or Stick
  • Sponge or Towel

Time To Get Started – Testing the Toilet’s Components

Okay, we have all of our tools and supplies ready and time to handle the job properly. Now we just remove the lid from the toilet tank so we can see all of the internal components. Done with that? Alright we’re going to test the toilet flapper first to see if that’s the issue. The toilet flapper is the rubber piece that covers the pipe. It’s connected to the toilet handle by a chain.

Take the stick or ruler you have and push down on the flapper so that it compresses against the pipe opening. Does the running sound stop? If so, then all we have to do is replace the toilet flapper to fix it once and for all. Turn off the water to the toilet and flush it so the tank empties. Remove the flapper and take it to a plumbing supply store to get a replacement.

The Toilet Flapper Wasn’t The Problem So What’s Next?

So we tested the toilet flapper to see if a bad seal may have been the cause of the toilet running with no luck. Next we’ll look at the toilet’s fill valve. This is the pillar usually on the left-hand side of the tank. It’s what the float arm is connected to and where the tube comes from that goes into the overflow pipe. With the tank open flush the toilet and inspect the fill valve in operation. Do you see any water escaping from anywhere other than it should be? Lift the float arm up. Does the water stop coming out of the fill valve? If it stops, you know the fill valve itself is the cause of the toilet running. It’ll have to be replaced.

Replacing a fill valve isn’t difficult just time-consuming. You’ll need to turn off the water and flush the toilet to empty the tank. Now sponge or towel up any remaining water so you can loosen the water supply hose from the bottom of the fill valve. Then just detach the little overflow hose from the nipple on the fill valve and remove it from the tank by pulling it upward.

Take the fill valve you removed with you to the plumbing supply store and get a replacement. Once your home just reattach everything you detached including the water supply and overflow hoses. Adjust the float and make sure the overflow pipe is at least an inch below the critical level mark on the fill valve. This is where the hacksaw comes in handy.

You Followed All Of Our Steps But Your Toilet Is Still Running!

While we’ve covered the two most common causes of a running toilet on Chicago’s Northwest Side, there can be any number of issues with your toilet that cause this kind of problem – some more difficult to identify and solve than others. That’s when you need the Northwest Side toilet plumbers from Vanguard Plumbing & Sewer – the highest rated service plumber in the region. Call (773) 633-6139 for a toilet plumbing estimate any time you need one!