Drake II Tank Lid Butts Up Against Wall Which is Causing Condensation Damage...PIC

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by tesla, Aug 24, 2012.

  1. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    I want to buy 2 more of these toilets but need to find a solution to this problem first. The tank lid has a small air vent in the back where the wall damage is (see pictured). Condensation stays in the tank with the exception of where it wicks out the air vent onto the wallpaper. This happened over a period of 2 years. I put some duct tape over the spot to provide some water resistance but the tape is soaked but appears to be doing the job for now (is duct tape water proof?). I'm assuming that its unwise to seal the air vent. My other toilets don't have this problem since the tank lids are rectangular, don't have an air gap and don't butt up against the wall. Any ideas?

    Thanks, Barry

    IMAGE_BF1388A4-5F5D-4B74-8590-FF2103DF4A59.JPG
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2012
  2. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Don't worry about sealing that cutaway. I am not persuaded that it was added solely to help the flush, although that may be a by-product of its addition.

    One of my Drakes has the "air vent" in the tank; the other doesn't, even though I bought them at the same time. (Drake original rather than Drake II.) That cutaway may indeed be an air vent that helps the flush, but it also seems to have been added as a feature at about the same time as Toto introduced the Washlet with the automatic flush device. The wires for the automatic flush device are to be routed through that cutaway, so at a minimum it has been added for that purpose. I don't think you are harming anything by covering it. Duct tape is vapor-proof, generally-speaking. If you want something more waterproof, you could try "rescue tape", which is clear, but the duct tape should be fine.

    I would call Toto customer service. 1-800-295-8134. I would complain about the damage to my wallpaper from the cutaway, and I would ask them, "Why does this thing have this cutaway, anyway? It has damaged my wallpaper, and I am disinclined to buy the three more than I planned to buy because of this." They are very nice folks in Georgia and they may have a solution for you. Moreover, I think that Toto should hear your feedback, and, being a Japanese-owned American company, they most assuredly keep scrupulous track of customer feedback. I truly think that this cutaway was added primarily to facilitate the auto-flush washlet, and to make it convenient to install that washlet. If you don't want that washlet, I think Toto should provide an option that doesn't cause water vapor to stain your wall; either a different tank lid (or tank in my case) or a device to cover the hole.

    Because my Drake stands off the wall 1.125", staining isn't an issue for me, but I strongly suspect that this is an unintended (and unimagined) consequence of the design change.
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2012
  3. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    I called Toto and you are correct about the redesigned tank lid to accommodate the washlet flush device. He said all the lids now have that air gap and the only way I could get one without the gap is if I happened to get an older one. Also, the original Drake's tank is not as wide, fore and aft, and would allow more gap against the wall. He suggested duct tape and didn't have a solution to close the gap. He also said that this is not a know problem and this is the first time he's heard of this.
  4. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    That's great! I'm so glad you called them, because I know that the Kaizen process will pick up your feedback. So, I guess duct tape it is!

    I hope you still love your Toto as much as we love ours!

    One other thought is that you could check that major auction site to see if Drake II tank lids of the older style pop up from time to time. But the duct tape is a cheaper, probably-equally-effective solution.

    (I used to do some work for the City of Garland. Love that part of Texas.)

    All the best...
    Last edited: Aug 24, 2012
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    Out of curiosity, is your rough-in really at 12", or is it a little short? Normally, there's enough gap behind the toilet that airflow would negate that effect.

    There's enough gap around the lid to let enough air in so that water can flow out during a flush...the cutout is unlikely to add to it enough to make a difference.
  6. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    It's an honest 12. Time to put a level on the tank to see if it or the bowl might be tilted back a bit. Could I get away with putting some rubber shims under the rear of the tank to tilt it forward?
  7. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    It shouldn't need shims to sit the way it's designed to sit. Better to spend the time carefully-tightening it into position so it makes 3 points of contact, as explained in the instructions.
  8. nestork

    nestork Janitorial Technician

    Messages:
    98
    Location:
    Winnipeg
    Barry:

    I'm seeing some mildew, but I can't say that I'm seeing any damage to the wall or wallpaper.

    From what I know, just about all wallpapers have been vinyl coated (to make them stain resistant and easier to clean) for many years now, so I suspect the duct tape might not even be needed.

    Can you dip a Q-tip in some bleach and clean that spot? Then, see if there's any damage to your tape or the surrounding wallpaper. If you don't have any Q-tips, a paper towel damp with bleach will do. Look closely to see if the vinyl coating on the wall paper is still intact. If it isn't, the paper will have absorbed moisture, and there'll be mildew growing in the paper under the vinyl coating.

    In fact, if the bleach removes that "condensation problem" then the easiest solution to the problem might be to just clean that mildew off with bleach every coupla years.

    PS: If it wuz me, I wouldn't stick duct tape directly to your wallpaper. You may have trouble getting it off. I'd stick painter's masking tape:

    [​IMG]

    to the wall paper for easy removal, and then put duct tape or packaging tape:

    [​IMG]

    over the painter's masking tape. That way, you have a tape that's impermeable to moisture over a tape that's easy to remove, so you won't have any trouble getting that duct tape or packaging tape off in future.
  9. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,932
    Location:
    New England
    If you have a true 12" rough-in, my guess is that the tank is not set properly; i.e., it is not hitting all three design points of contact. If so, loosen the bolts, hold it straight, then tighten each side alternately a turn or so until it makes proper contact. There's enough air leakage between the cover and the tank so you can cover that and not affect the flush.
  10. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    And, as Toto confirmed to Tesla on the phone, the cutaway is there so you can run the auto-flush cables from a washlet into the tank, not to provide air for the flush.
  11. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    Got this from Toto tech support:

    I have not heard of a toilet causing condensation. The only thing I can think that would cause this is the toilet sitting in a high humidty room. The hole is put there for casting. When the tank goes through the kiln, the tank lid sits on top off it so that the lid and tank are fired at the same time. This is how a perfect fit is formed. The hole allows for air to escape within the tank. If the hole wasn't there, the tanks will explode in the kiln. Have you tried flushing with the tank lid off to see if anything is causing a spray? How long has it been installed?

    I was very careful about installation but my level shows the tank is tilted back a few degrees but the bowl is level. I'll take the tank off and redo it. Also will try the bleach idea to see the extent of the "damage".

    By the way, Wjcandee and others have provided more help than Toto support but that may not be a fair comparison since this forum seems to be unusually helpful.

    Thanks.

    Barry
  12. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Bizarre answer from Toto. A little disappointing. So...the holes in the bottom of the tank (HELLO?!) wouldn't be enough? So all the previous tanks that came without this feature exploded? Dumb.
  13. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    Took the tank off and put a level across the elevated ring that the tank sits on and its very unlevel, yet the bowl is almost dead level. Is it possible I have an imperfection? I put a couple of rubber shims in the back under the tank and this helped but I would like a bit more to get even further away from the wall. Can I shim the bowl on the floor to angle it slightly forward without it affecting the wax seal? Will this possibly cause a leak?

    By the way, the tank to bowl gasket is deteriorating.....bits of rubber are falling off. Is this normal after only 2 years?

    Thanks for your help
  14. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    No imperfection. Your toilet sits on the floor not on the ring. The ring (flange) is what you screw it into but is not what supports it; the flange shouldn't be touching the toilet anywhere. So your flange may be unlevel and the bowl be level.

    I wouldn't angle the bowl forward; this will change the relationship of the water in the bowl (which will always be level) to the weir (the lowest point of the top bend in the toilet's internal trapway). You may find that more water collects in the bowl and that it is harder to push it out (although the latter issue should be less significant). The bigger problem is if the bowl is tilted backwards rather than fowards, because you get a little more water running out if it is tilted backwards. Bottom line is that if it's level and you like its performance, I wouldn't mess with it.

    I'm guessing that the tank-to-bowl gasket is sticking to the china? I'm not horrified by that, but if the thing is dissolving or something (I assume nobody is using in-tank bowl cleaner), then maybe it's time to ask toto for a free replacement. I would call and not write; I think the folks on the phone seem to be more with-it, judging from your experience.
  15. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    How much can a bowl be shimmed after its been installed and secured without breaking the wax seal? It's been installed for 2 years now. Between cheating the bowl and tank angle forward a hair I think I can lick this problem of the tank too close to the wall. I put a couple of pieces of rubber between the wall and tank to push it forward a bit and it fixed the problem but I don't trust it for a long term solution.
  16. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Location:
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    I would just pull out the wet vac and do a pull and reset.
    Move the bolts away from the wall a bit and start over.
  17. tesla

    tesla New Member

    Messages:
    30
    Location:
    DFW (Garland), TX
    Not what I wanted to hear but I'm sure your right.

    Thanks
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