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Why Is My Toilet Running?

July 08, 2024

Do you hear your toilet running? Usually, this is the normal sound of water filling the toilet tank. It should only run 20-30 seconds after flushing.

If your toilet runs nonstop even when you haven't flushed it, you are most likely dealing with one of these issues:

  • A broken toilet flapper
  • A toilet flapper chain with the wrong length
  • A toilet float at the wrong point

It’s essential to have these issues resolved. A constantly running toilet could be wasting hundreds of gallons a day, significantly increasing your water bill.

In this blog, we’ll show you how to spot a problem and ways to troubleshoot it before a plumber arrives.

Need a Toilet Repair ASAP?

Contact Ranshaw! Over the past 60 years, we have strived to become one of Queens’ most trusted plumbing contractors. We focus on training our plumbers to do things right, providing customers with reliable toilet repairs to save you time and money in the long run, and fully stocking our service vans so that you can get your repair finished in just one visit.

Call us today at (718) 767-0707 or schedule with us below to experience 5-star service!

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Broken Toilet Flapper

The most common cause of a running toilet is a broken toilet flapper. This round rubber part controls when water moves from the toilet tank to the bowl and seals the water in the tank. A chain connects the flapper and toilet handle. So, when you flush the toilet, the lift arm in the tank pulls on a chain attached to the toilet flapper, which then rises up and allows water into the toilet bowl. After enough water leaves the tank, the flapper drops back down, resealing the tank.

When the flapper is broken, water will seep into the toilet bowl, causing the toilet to run and refill itself constantly.

How to evaluate if your flapper is broken:

  • Remove the lid of the tank to access the flapper.
  • Check the flapper- If it’s cracked or brittle from sediment buildup, turn the cutoff valve clockwise to shut off the toilet’s water supply.

Contact a professional plumber who can replace the flapper and get your toilet working properly again.

Toilet Flapper Chain With the Wrong Length

Another reason your toilet may run constantly is if the toilet flapper chain is the wrong length. As mentioned before, this chain connects the toilet flapper and handle.

If the flapper chain is too short, it won’t provide enough slack, and the flapper won’t be able to seal properly. Without a complete seal, the toilet slowly leaks and has to refill itself constantly.

On the other hand, a flapper chain that is too long will have too much slack and get caught underneath the flapper.

How to evaluate your flapper chain:

  • Remove the lid of the tank to access the flapper chain.
  • Inspect the chain for the right amount of slack, which allows the flapper to completely seal the small hole at the bottom of the toilet tank.

Call a plumber if the chain is broken or if the chain appears too short/long and you need help adjusting it.

Toilet Float at the Wrong Point

A toilet float is a big plastic balloon in the tank and consists of an arm and a ball. When the tank refills with water, the float ball rises to a certain point and then shuts off the water to prevent water from refilling into the bowl.

The water will not shut off if the water level gets too high before the float ball acts. It will constantly drain into the toilet bowl. This makes it sound like the toilet is constantly running.

How to check if the float is at the wrong point:

  • Remove the lid of the tank to access the float.
  • Lift the float arm. If doing so stops the toilet from running, the float is most likely the problem.

Contact a professional to inspect the float arm and ball and see if they need to be adjusted or replaced.

Ready for a Reliable Toilet Repair in Queens, NY? Contact Ranshaw.

As a local, family-owned operation for more than six decades, we’ve stayed committed to providing dependable, efficient, and trustworthy toilet repairs to Queens homeowners. We care about completing our plumbing jobs correctly and valuing our customers’ time. Not to mention that we back up all of our plumbing work with strong warranties and guarantees.

Call us at (718) 767-0707 or contact us below to schedule an appointment today!

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