Advice about new Drake toilet leak

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by Trabaja, May 4, 2010.

  1. Trabaja

    Trabaja New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    US west coast
    We just had a Drake toilet (CST744SF.10) installed by a licensed plumber last Friday. He flushed it a couple of times before he left. It didn't leak when we didn't use it, but once we started using it, it does leak from the tank mounting bolt on one side. It does not appear to be leaking directly from the tank, but from water accumulated in the recess on the base below the tank and then through the bolt.

    The plumber. who has an excellent reputation, returned, took the tank off, and carefully reseated everything. He was mystified. He did point out that part of the rubber tank to bowl gasket was dry and was suspicious about what might be causing that. After the re-install, the same thing happened. After we began to use it again, the leak reappeared. Our plumber said that even with the best company, a certain number of the toilets just have problems with the casting and fit and he felt this might be one of them. He said he has installed hundreds of toilets - it's not rocket science and they are set up to be pretty foolproof.

    I am going to call the company tomorrow but I'm not quite sure what to say. How should I describe this problem and/or what should I ask for?

    Thanks!
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,413
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Here are Jamie's instructions.
    He likes to tighten the large nut on the bottom of the tank.

    Jamie's instructions

    [​IMG]
  3. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,395
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    I would definitely go back to the basic installation instructions as offered in Jamie's video before assuming the product is defective. Most of the time the big nut on the bottom is tight and the area around the tank bolts are pretty smooth, but it only takes seconds to double check the nut and sand around the bolt holes to make sure. This doesn't 100% rule out a possible defect in the tank, but do these things before returning the tank.
  4. Trabaja

    Trabaja New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    US west coast
    Drake leak follow-up

    Thank you for your advice. The plumber did come back and tighten the flush valve nut and check the others and very carefully put it back together again. It is not leaking... yet. BUT...

    I have a related question which may seem a little strange. After the last re-install, we were anxious to see if it was leaking. Since it usually took a day or 2 to appear, we decided to check under the tank (between the tank and the bowl below the 3 contact points) to see if any water was accumulating. You cannot see in there so we made a "wick" out of a thin strip of newspaper. The wick became wet and started to drip. We let it continue to drip while we did not use the toilet in case it was just some initial water. It did eventually stop and we started to use the toilet again. It hasn't leaked again (in the old way) but it is still getting wet in the space between the bowl and the tank.

    Now I know that most (everyone?) would not check there. But now that we did... well we'd like to know if this is normal? Is it OK? Or is it a sign that we will have a problem again, but it will just take longer to appear?

    Thanks again!
    Last edited: May 10, 2010
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,313
    Location:
    New England
    Unless it is condensation (and with these 1.6g toilets, you normally only have that problem if the toilet is flushed several times in a row), no, it is not normal. Did the plumber take the moment to lightly sand the surface of the tank where the bolts go through? This often isn't needed, but it makes that area much smoother, and the washer seals better.
  6. Trabaja

    Trabaja New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    US west coast
    I should have said that we did follow Jamie's instructions and this is where we are now. So I am unsure as to the next step. Is there a likely culprit for this problem? Is there something else we can try? Or if it is time to call the company, how should I describe the problem and what can I expect from them?
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,313
    Location:
    New England
    I'd call Toto, describe the problem, and what was done - see what they suggest. While Toto defects are low (Terry says his run about 1% or less), they do happen. It could be a problem in the casting or a bad gasket or seat. Did you supply the toilet, or did the plumber? If you did, the next time out, the plumber will likely charge you. If he did, he should make it right, which may mean a new tank if he can't find and fix why it is leaking. The things are pretty simple. Also note, it could be leaking around the fill valve where it clamps to the tank. So, there are 4 holes: fill valve, two bolt holes, and the tank-to-bowl gasket and flapper seat. Could be a little nib of plastic somewhere that is allowing water to leak by, could be a porous tank. You could try putting some food coloring in the tank. See if the water you detect is then colored. If it is, it is a leak, if it isn't, it's condensation or a leak on the supply line to the valve. It may also slightly stain the area, and make it easier to notice where it is coming from.
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