Toilets  ( Basic )

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How does my toilet work

Why does my toilet tank sweat

Why does it make a trickle noise

Water on floor around the toilet

Fill Valve Replacement

How to change a wax seal

My toilet seat is broken

My toilet handle broke

Mansfeld toilet handle sticks

Mansfeld toilet handle hard to flush

 

 

Minor repairs can be made to your toilet and you can do them yourself. Some of the more difficult repairs as the wax seal under the toilet should be performed by a plumber. Below you will find the answer to many of the day to day problems that might come up. It might be a wet floor, a running toilet all the time or maybe just a little tinkle sound. Most of which is simple and easy to correct.
 

 
 

Mansfeld Toilet
 

 

 

Why does it make a Trickle Noise

Can you here that constant tinkle tinkle in the middle of the night. Sounds like something dripping. This can be caused by the rubber flapper in the bottom of the toilet It raises to let the water flow into the toilet and flush. If the rubber gets worn out, and all of them do, it will allow a small amount of water to trickle by and as it drips into the ring of the toilet bowl, you can hear it. This gets really annoying and can cause your water bill to go higher. The second cause is the fill valve worn out and not stopping the water completely. It than fills up and trickles down the center tube. The blue ball in this picture is a float. Once the toilet fills up, the ball floats up and applies pressure to the seals in the fill valve. This stops the water. If worn out, it will trickle by and down the tube. This also goes down into the toilet bowl and not onto the floor. The flapper on the picture above (mansfeld toilet) is a round rubber gasket fixed around the hole under the bottom of the center tube. To replace it, turn off the water valve near the floor behind the toilet. Unscrew the plastic cap from the center tube in the toilet tank (Water Closet). Slide the tube up and completely out of the tank. Replace the round gasket on the bottom of the tube and reinstall it back into the tank. If it is the fill valve leaking and going down in the top of the center tube, check the paragraph below titled, Fill valve replacement.

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Standard Toilet

Standard toilet tank

 

This toilet has the same results however, you can see the difference in the fill valve and float. Also the flapper is different and much easier to replace. To replace the flapper, turn off the water valve near floor behind the toilet. Flush the toilet and remove the flapper from the two little pins on the sides of center tube. Disconnect the chain from the handle arm and install new flapper the same way. Most flappers come with the ring in the center which can be placed on the center tube. This can be cut off but DO NOT cut off the ears which fit onto the side pins.  Feel the edges of the hole which the flapper sits down on. If the edges are a little rough, take a dry rag and clean the edges off. Do not use anything course like sandpaper to clean these edges. Sometimes you may have to use a green scrubby like you might have on the kitchen sink. (an old one for cleaning) The roughness must be removed to give the rubber flapper a smooth seal. If you can not get the edges smooth and stop the trickle, you can purchase a flapper rebuild kit which has a sticky gum and a new seat for the flapper included. Follow the directions in the package closely.

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Standard fill valve

Toilet fill valve

 

Fill Valve Replacement
Fill valve replacement sounds and looks like it might be difficult. DO NOT believe that. It is simple even for the 12 year old. Let's take a look at a fill valve. This picture shows the fill valve displayed on the floor. Three groups can be installed together to make one fine working mechanism. |

The fill valve is made up of the float and water supply tube. This Tube is adjustable for water level. There is a slip ring just a couple inches between the float cylinder and the bottom end. The tube is a double tube system, one inside the other. Simply slide the slip ring toward the float cylinder and than the tube will slide up and down on the inner tube. Lock it in place by sliding the slip ring back down into place. This must be done after the fill valve is installed and water is filling the tank so when you slide the slip ring up toward the float, turn the valve near the floor off first. This adjustment is to set the level of the water in the tank.

 
 

Most tanks should have a water level line engraved into the back of the tank (inside) but if it doesn't the water level should be 1 to 2 inches below the top of the center tube.

To replace the fill valve, turn off the water at valve near floor behind the toilet. Flush toilet and using a sponge or rag, soak up the rest of the water in the tank. When the tank is empty, remove the water supply line behind the toilet from the bottom of the tank only. A small amount of water may drain out of the tube (should be less than a half cup of water), use your rag to soak it up and than continue. There is one larger plastic nut which holds the fill valve in the tank. Remove this nut and the fill valve will pick up out of the tank. Make sure you disconnect the small rubber hose that connects the fill valve to the center tube in the tank. The new fill valve has a new rubber washer. (black disc in photo above) The center of the disc must be removed and the outer ring must be installed on the bottom, threaded end of the new valve. The more narrow edge goes toward the end and will extend down through the hole in the bottom of the tank. The fill valve should have instructions with it for this assembly. Once the rubber washer is installed, insert the fill valve through the hole in the bottom of the tank and lock it in place with the new plastic nut. Connect your water supply line and don't forget your new rubber hose which connects the fill valve to the center tube. This one is the one which puts water back in the toilet bowl after the flush. If the center tube has no way to hold the rubber hose in place, there is a new spout with a clip attached to install on the center tube. This will hold the new rubber hose.  Don't forget to connect your water supply line from the valve at floor to your new valve After all this is done, you are ready to turn the water back on near the floor. If the fill valve does not fill the toilet far enough, you can use the slip ring mentioned earlier in this article. The float also has a small metal clip adjustment which can make a small adjustment by squeezing the metal clip and sliding up or down.  Check for leaks at top and bottom of the water supply line behind the toilet. Make sure it is not leaking at the bottom of the tank. If all is good, place the lid back on the toilet tank and have a cup of coffee.

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How does my toilet work

The toilet has been created to assist you in disposal of soft bodily material which break down or apart when the toilet flushes. Cigarette butts and candy wrappers do not break down or fall apart when wet. They will become lodged and cause the toilet to back up and over flow on occasion. The toilet keeps you from having to go out in the cold in the winter and drop your pants when it is cold and keeps you out of the hot sun in the summer. Certain places created by God should be kept where the sun don't shine. The toilet allows the disposal and than carries it out of the house for you. Your toilet has two main tanks. One you sit on and the other one watches your back. The back one is called a water closet. The one you sit on is called a toilet bowl. To make the toilet operate correctly, water is filled in the water closet and stays there until it is needed. A small amount of water stays in the toilet bowl. It stays there to prevent sewer gas from entering your home and keeps most disposals from sticking when used. At the top of the toilet bowl, hidden under the rim is several small holes which are designed to let the water from the closet enter the bowl at a slight angle which makes the water spin. As the water spins and fills a little higher in the bowl, the motion will force the water and waste to flow through the trap of the toilet.  Looking at the back of most toilets, you will notice the design allows water to first flow down and than back up slightly through a built in pipe (in back of the toilet bowl, not the tank) than it turns and goes on down the drain. The built in pipe in the back of the bowl keeps the water in to prevent the gases. Now to make the water flow into the bowl, you have a handle which raises the rubber plug (flapper) in the water closet. As the water level in the closet goes down, the flapper is lowered back into place to hold water as it fills again.

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Why does my toilet tank sweat?

The water tank may sometimes sweat due to difference in temperature. The water temperature coming into the house is generally cool and your room temperature warmer. If the difference is great, condensation builds on the surface of the tank. This can also be caused by a/c and heat vents installed in floor next to toilet. You can find at some stores, a cloth cover to slip over the tank to make the temperature a little more mild. If it is the heat vent causing it to sweat, your local hardware store may have a diffuser for the vent. This would redirect the vent air away from the toilet and prevent direct temperature change.

 

Why is water on the floor at the toilet?

The floor around your toilet may appear to be discolored or starting to turn gray. This is usually a sign of water getting into the flooring. Is your toilet leaking and if so, where from? Is it a wax seal which is between the toilet and the floor? Is a water line leaking? Maybe even drops of water from the water closet. First thing you need to do is get a dry rag and a flashlight. Use the rag to dry off all the possibilities of leaks. The water valve near the floor, the water hose from the valve to the toilet tank. Make sure you get both ends of the hose dry good. Dry off any water moisture on bottom of water closet and bolts which hold it on. Dry up all the way around the toilet at the floor. Now use the flashlight. That's right, it is daylight and you have the ceiling light on, BUT, with a flashlight you can see the slightest little bead of water at the connections. Check each one of them close with the flash light and if there is a leak you will most likely find it easily. If you do not find any leaks, the best possibility is the wax ring at the floor.

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How to change a wax seal

Unless you have some experience with this one, it is best to leave it to the plumbers. The wax seal is the hidden wonder of a toilet. It is installed between a toilet and the pipe that comes up through the floor under the toilet. If it starts to leak, the vinyl flooring may become discolored without you seeing water on the floor. It gets under the vinyl flooring. To correct this, you will have to pull the toilet completely out of it's place. First turn off water at valve near floor behind the toilet and flush the toilet. Hold the handle down until all the water that can go out does go out.. Now using a plunger, plunge as much water as you can down the drain. You must get as much water as possible out of the toilet bowl. After that is done, you can take off the toilet bolts at the two sides of the toilet which hold it down to the floor. Some times these bolts will have to be cut with a hacksaw and replaced. With the water line disconnected from the bottom of the toilet tank and the 2 bolts taken apart at the bottom sides. The lid of the toilet tank should be carefully taken off and set out of the room to avoid breaking it. Place a piece of plastic on the floor to the side or in front of the toilet. Carefully lift the toilet straight up and sit it on the plastic. The plastic will help prevent getting wax on the floor. Do not tilt the toilet any more than you have to or the remaining water will flow out of the toilet bowl onto the floor.

With the toilet out of place, you must use a paint stick or other disposable object to scrape away the remaining wax from the pipe in the floor. Dispose of this wax and pieces of bolts if you can not reuse them. (walmart bags make it easy) NEVER reuse the wax seal. Carefully with help if you have it, slowly tilt the toilet as little as possible and scrape away any wax under it. The plastic (older ones are metal) pipe at the floor will have a toilet flange screwed down tight to the floor. Set a NEW wax ring in the center of this flange and install new bolts if necessary.  It is best to buy the wax seal ring with the black cone in the center. The cone will help you keep it centered when setting the toilet back into place. The bolts go into a slot on the flange and than slide along in the slot to the center on one side. The second bolt on the opposite side. These bolts have an end with 2 flat edges which when in place, will prevent it from turning as you put the nuts on them. Try to center these across from each other crossing the center of the pipe. The toilet must now be lifted and set onto the wax ring making sure the bolts go in the holes. The toilet will appear to be held to high but should lower to the floor as the bolts are tightened and the wax ring seal smashes forming an air tight seal. Tighten down the bolts at the toilet bottom on each side and reconnect the water supply line. You are ready with these connections tight, to turn the water back on. Flush the toilet twice to force water through the seal and drain. If no leaks are found, place the lid back on the toilet tank (water closet) and have a cup of coffee, Please wash your hands first.

 

My toilet seat is broken

Some toilet seats can give you a bad feeling. You set down and quickly jump up running through the house with your jeans down around your ankles shouting "something just bit me in the bathroom". Welp, relax, when a toilet seat is made of mostly plastic, it tends to break. A bolt might break leaving the seat to turn a little sideways and believe me, it can than bite you. Pinch and leave marks where you don't want anybody checking it out for you. Change the seat! They run around 10 bucks at the hardware stores. Two plastic bolts hold them on the toilet. Just to the back of the seat are 2 hinges. A plastic cover is usually in place covering the bolts. You can take a pocket knife or a flat tip screw driver and gently pry the cover open to expose the bolts or screws. Whichever it is, there is also a plastic nut on the bottom end of the screws. Must hold the nut with a wrench or even pliers may work. Turn the top of the screw to remove. Seat is off and new seat can be installed using the same steps in reverse.

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My toilet handle broke!

What to do if your toilet handle breaks. Welp, how about PANIC!  No way! Simple fix. If it still needs flushed when it breaks, simply remove the toilet tank lid and locate the end of the handle stem near the center flush tube. You can pull up on it easily or grab the chain and lift upward. This will raise the flapper and allow the toilet to flush.  

Now to fix the handle, about 3 bucks at your hardware store. Some handles are universal and some are specific to toilets like mansfeld. Universal should work fine unless you have the mansfeld as these are designed to slip through the loop of the flush tube. You might want to turn off the water behind the toilet at the floor and than flush the toilet. This will help you get a hold of the chain when the new handle is installed. Now to remove the old one, there is one large plastic nut inside the tank directly behind the handle. The nut can be turned to remove HOWEVER it is left hand threads. This means to take the nut off, you must turn it backwards. After the plastic nut is removed, the handle will easily pull out of the tank. Slide the new handle in and put the plastic nut onto the handle stem and snug it down. ONLY SNUG it down as it can break easy. Attach the chain to the end of it and make sure it is not to loose or to tight. If it is to loose, this will allow it to get in the way of the flapper and prevent it from sealing. If it is to tight, the flapper will not go down all the way and will prevent it from sealing. When released the chain should have a little bit of slack but not near enough to allow it to make a loop at the bottom when released. Now with the handle installed and the chain adjusted, turn on the water and let's see if it will work.

Mansfeld toilet handle hard to flush.

My toilet is a Mansfeld toilet and the handle won't push down to flush. What's wrong with it?  This is a simple problem and occurs over time when the rubber ring in the bottom of the tank sits in water over a few years. The mansfeld handle can become very hard to push down and can break when trying to flush the toilet. Let me explain! The mansfeld toilet has a flush tube which sllides down over the over flow tube in the center of your tank. This flush tube is raised and lowered by the flush handle. If the rubber ring seal at the bootom starts to age, it begins to roll upward in the center kind of like a bowl. At this point, when the flush tube is lowered on  to it. The ring squeezes a little and oes up inside the flush tube and not stay simply against the bottom. This action of going inside the tube causes a friction  whichmakes it hard to pick up off of the ring. That is why the handle is hard to push. To change this seal, refer to the first article above. The one about "why does it make a trickle noise.

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