When water gets on your bathroom floor from a toilet overflow, the fix is fairly simple: turn off the shut-off valve and plunge out the clog to release the built-up water in the bowl. But what do you do if the leak comes out from underneath the tank?
You still want to start with the shut-off valve, but the next step depends on finding what part is causing the leak. That answer can determine whether it's a simple fix, whether it requires professional plumbing services (from at outlet such as Sunset Professional Plumbing Services Inc.) or requires an entirely new toilet.
Fill Valve Leak
Lift the toilet tank lid, look inside, and find the tall column off to one side. That's the fill valve assembly and the bottom of that assembly connects to the incoming water pipe to allow the water to enter the tank. If the bottom of that valve breaks or comes loose from the pipe, water can leak out through the tank where the fill valve is located.
You can see if this is the problem by flushing your toilet once the shut-off valve is off. The remaining tank water will flush into the bowl and you should be able to see where the leak is originating.
If the leak is under the fill valve, you likely need to replace the entire assembly. You can head to the hardware store for a new assembly and follow the package directions or call a plumber for assistance.
If the leak seems to be coming from the pipe itself below the tank, you definitely want to call a plumber as soon as possible and leave the shut-off valve turned off until the problem is fixed.
When you perform the flush test to see where the leak is originating, check to see if the water is escaping from a crack in the tank's surface. If this is the problem, you will likely need to get a new toilet.
You might be able to get by with a cracked tank for a short period of time. But the weakness in the surface can cause the crack to continue to worsen with every flush and potentially cause other cracks to begin. Eventually, you could end up with a flooded bathroom floor.
Broken Bolt or Washer
If the water in the crack test seems to be coming from the connecting point between the tank and the bowl, it's likely a broken bolt or washer. Remove all of the water from the tank using a wet-dry vacuum and then take the tank off the bowl.
You will need to consult your manufacturer's guide for instructions on how exactly to remove your tank from the bowl. But it should involve using a wrench and screwdriver to loosen and remove a bolt on each side of the bowl. Under the bolts are rubber washers.
Once the tank and parts are removed, clean the newly exposed areas well with a wire brush to prevent future buildups and erosion. Replace the broken bolts and/or washers and reattach the tank to the bowl.
Remember to turn the shut-off valve back on before trying to use the toilet again.Share
25 June 2015
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