Have you had to mop up water at the base of the toilet? Are you using a bath towel wrapped around the bottom of the toilet? Do you hear your toilet running in between flushes? Wax ring, (the gasket between the floor and the base of the toilet), and toilet flapper valve, (the cone shaped gasket found between the tank and the bowl), failures, are commonly the culprit when trying to determine and isolate common toilet plumbing problems. These two gaskets will deteriorate over time and the seal can fail, causing your toilet to leak.
Either one of these toilets plumbing problems can cause extensive damage to your home and cost hundreds of dollars in higher than usual water bills if left go without repair. To temporarily stop a leak at the base of the toilet, shut the supply valve off to the fixture. If you need to use this toilet because it is the only bathroom in the house, flushing it with a bucket is a temporary solution because you can force the waste water or solids through the trap, preventing the water from sitting in the bowl and then seeping out around the base.
Temporary Solutions to Eliminate Costly Damage From Toilet Leaks
No one wants to revert to flushing a toilet with a bucket of water for very long. It is only a very temporary solution while you gather parts or while you attempt a repair. To get to the wax ring requires completely emptying the toilet and disassembling the tank from the bowl to make the fixture lighter to lift away from the floor. The flapper valve leak can be positively diagnosed by placing a few drops of vegetable dye into the tank. If it shows up in the bowl it is time for some new, inexpensive toilet tank parts.
Phantom flushes: These mysterious sounds coming from inside the toilet tank can mean that you are losing water between the flapper valve and the entrance to the toilet bowl. It doesn’t cause damage but it will run up your water bill considerably. In a year’s time a household could save enough water to do 270 loads of laundry by repairing this toilet part that is more of a costly nuisance than anything.
Wax ring deterioration: When this seal at the bottom of the toilet becomes rigid and fails, water gets trapped in between the flooring and the toilet flange, can damage floor joists and ceilings below the bathroom floor. Signs that this disaster is occurring in your home could be water stains appearing at a ceiling, a puddle on the bathroom floor near the base of the toilet or both.
Why is My Toilet Suddenly Stopped Up? It Almost Overflowed, Help!
Households with small children need to look no further than the toys the little one’s use while splashing in the bathtub. Even a small toy dropped into the toilet by the curious observer can cause a major clog. This accidental toilet clog can sometimes be relieved by plunging. Slow moving toilet drains can be a sign that a clog has formed further down the drain line and should be a priority.
Never flush anything but toilet paper down the toilet. Cotton swabs, feminine hygiene products, and paper towels will get stuck inside the pipes and cause major problems. Most toilet clogs happen when an object, (wadded excessive toilet paper, toys, baby wipes, hair from combs and brushes), all of which should never be allowed to enter the toilet get stuck inside the toilet trap. A black-cupped, flange style plunger is optimal for the job, although a red-cupped plunger will sometimes take care of a minor toilet clog.
If the toilet is showing signs of a sluggish drain, act promptly before the drain completely stops flowing. Gurgling sounds mean that the waste-vent stack, (a pipe that passes through the roof in most cases to allow air to enter the drain), is blocked. This pipe must remain clear for a good siphoning action to occur when flushing the toilet.
Do you have a toilet plumbing problem and need a professional plumber to visit your home for a free drain analysis? We can fix it! We offer 24/7 plumbing emergency service, including weekends and holidays – never a trip fee or overtime charge is part of our friendly, reliable and courteous plumbing service. We offer regularly scheduled drain maintenance programs, too!