Kohler Cimarron toilet review, Owner comments and pictures

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by Reader Review, Jan 2, 2006.

  1. fyoungrn

    fyoungrn New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    I replaced my old 70s toilets (2) with the Kohler Cimmaron almost 2 years ago. It was taking 2 or 3 flushes to get rid of solid waste, plus the water usage was bothering me. I was looking for a low-water volume, high-pressure flush toilet, and the guy at Lowe's recommended this one. He called it the "big dump" model! They had a sheet that compared different models, and it did say that the Cimmaron was rated lower in the bowl cleaning department, so I knew that going in. I am very happy with them, they flush everything with one flush, and I have not had any problems with clogging, even with my husbands "big dumps." For the occasional "cling-on" I just don some disposable gloves and use a toilet wipe to take care of it (I'm a nurse so dealing with human waste is not a problem for me). I have been very happy with them so far.

    The one problem I had early on was that the float was not set properly so that the toilet kept running. That was a simple fix, just followed the directions that came with the toilet.

    Now I have a different problem which started last night. The tank fills up very slowly. I'm going to reference the picture of the innards on page one of this threas. I apologize in advance, I don't know the terminology for toilets. The problem seems to be located in the apparatus on the left side of the tank, which has a red cap over it, with a gray shaft running down it. The water is not getting to the little white hose which runs from the gray shaft to the black column located on the right side of the tank. I took the white hose off to check if it was clogged, and it is not. I stuck a toothpick a little ways where the hose attaches to the gray shaft, and it did not appear to be clogged. The interesting thing is, if I turn the water going into the tank off completely for a second, then turn it back on again, it will flow all the way through normally. I'm thinking that maybe there is a stuck valve or a piece of debris that gets unstuck when I turn off the water pressure, but gets stuck again by the time it runs through the flush cycle.

    Any help on how to fix this would be appreciated.
  2. fyoungrn

    fyoungrn New Member

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    seattle, wa
    So while I was typing in my story, my brother was on his computer looking up how to fix the problem.

    It turned out that the seal needed to be replaced. The Loews does not carry the correct Fluidmaster replacement parts for the Cimarron. Found the parts at Ace Hardware. The entire float assembly is part number 400A. The seal part number is 242. There is also a cap, which contains a seal also, which says "for 400A."

    We just replaced the cap, and, voila! problem solved!:D

    Edit: here is the link he was looking at:

    http://www.fluidmaster.com/html/troubleshooting.html
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2009
  3. redsox04

    redsox04 New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    burlington
    kohler flushing problem

    the toilet no longer flushes....any thoughts
  4. micp879

    micp879 New Member

    Messages:
    68
    Location:
    Martinez, CA
    You need to give us more info regarding the symptoms. Such as does water rise in the bowl and just swirl around, or does nothing happen, period?.... What kind of toilet is it?.... etc. Your description is like someone saying "my car doesn't run." There are alot of possibilities, and if you want help, you are going to need to supply more info.
  5. Disappointed

    Disappointed New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    Idaho
    Kohler Cimarron is the worst...

    I wish I had read this forum before purchasing not one, but TWO new Kohler Cimarron toilets. I had both bathrooms remodeled and decided to upgrade to a new, sleek toilet. Yes, they look nice, but the flush does NOT clean the bowl. There are whole areas of the bowl that the water jets don't even touch. There is no swirl, just sort of a downward stream that hits about half the bowl. My 15 year old American Standard basic toilets that I removed were far superior. I am just very angry at the poor performance. I dread the day that a guest in my home uses the toilet and discovers that the "evidence" of their use is left all over the bowl. Sorry, I don't know how else to put it. This toilet simply doesn't offer much but good looks.
  6. mt si dad

    mt si dad New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    North Bend WA
    Me too

    We've had the class 5 Kohler for about 2 years now.

    It started randomly blocking about a month after we had it. Due to the way the exit hole in the bowl is made, standard plungers don't work. I bought one of those black "ball" plungers, which works *only slightly better*.

    The toilet plugs about weekly now. It's a real irritant because you have to plunge and plunge, and nothing happens. then the water will slowly drain, and maybe it will clear itself. Or, it might not drain all night & require another session of plunging.

    About a month ago the toilet never stopped running. the little clip that holds the tube into the overflow value had snapped off or something, but it's gone. I would suspect it in the plugging, but the plugging has been going on for a long time.

    Now, today, the assembly that controls the actual flushing (the long black tube with the float) has broken and the toilet will not stop filling. Even holding up the float arm manually does not stop it. I have the water turned off while I go to the hardware store to buy a replacement.

    I was always happy with my Kohler sink and faucet in the kitchen, but I am terribly, terribly disappointed in this very expensive toilet that is undependable. The toilet I bought for the guest bathroom for $90 from Lowes with the minimal hardware has in the last 10 years plugged 3 times. The Kohler beat that record in the first few months we had it.

    I would never buy another Kohler product for any reason. Even if I were replacing my sink, I would choose a competitor's product.
  7. Gregg

    Gregg New Member

    Messages:
    1
    kohler cimmarron toilets

    I saw many complaints on the Kohler Cimmarron toilet regarding it lacking rinse. Kohler had a class 5 flushing system that has been redesigned and it is a class 6 flushing system. (they look the same)The class 5 most water upon flushing went through the siphon jet where the class 6, 1/2 the water passes through the siphon jet and 1/2 through the rim for a better rinse. When purchasing the Kohler I recommend the class 6 flushing system.
  8. pexman

    pexman New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    NJ
    Pexman Comments

    just a DIY guy. i replaced an old american standard with a round kohler wellworth class 5 about 1 1/2 months ago, just before a company of 8 grown relatives came. it performed well under those circumstances and so far, still no problems. bowl wash is adequate, in fact i found out that the old 3.5 that gave me a lot bowl wash tended to smear marks than clean the bowl.
    also installed a cadet 3 round bowl in a friend's house 2 weeks ago, i felt the kohler has a much better finish. i will have the opportunity to test drive it myself this weekend
    i will give updates regarding their respective performances.

    i always hear about poor bowl wash on the kohler but so far as my kohler wellworth class 5 has not been in need of any cleaning. and i have purposely not cleaned it since i installed it. flushing is excellent.

    2 months problem free

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 7, 2009
  9. Cookie

    Cookie .

    Messages:
    5,653
    Location:
    .

    Oh, yes I got one too. And, eventually it is going to be outa here. Terry recommends a Toto and that will be the next toilet. I suggest those needing a new toilet to listen to his advice about toilets and plumbing needs.

    It is just very frustrating when something which should seem as basic as a toilet can be a pain in the ass. It may sound funny, but it really is miserable when they just don't work or work well enough.
  10. achutch

    achutch New Member

    Messages:
    193
    Location:
    Vermont
    I also had a Cimarron toilet and was very disappointed in it because it didn't rinse and it clogged occasionally. Thanks to this site, the Cimarron was replaced with a Toto Drake. That was just over 4 years ago. To date, I have never had a problem with the flush or any of the parts inside the tank -- still has the original flapper and Quiet Fill cap, even with the chloramine in the water.

    My Toto does not have the Sanigloss, but it rinses far better than the Cimarron did, and in my opinion flushes better than any of the old 3.5 gallon toilets that were there before.

    achutch
  11. jacksan

    jacksan Engineer

    Messages:
    2
    Location:
    Ohio
    Are your Cimarrons Class 5 or Class 6 ?
    Are they 1.28 gpf or 1.6 gpf ??

    Without that info we don't know if we are comparing apples to apples.
  12. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,448
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    The Kohler Class six rinses better then the Kohler class five.
    But it's still lacking compared to other brands.

    Since you are an engineer, I will put it this way.

    The Class five left out all of the rinse holes at the back of the bowl.
    Kohler's comment, was that the homeowner could "wax" the back of the bowl.

    The Class six now has rinse holes 360 degrees around the bowl, but they are spaced so wide, that the water streams don't cover the entire bowl, they are thin water streaks running down the bowl with gaps in between.
    This isn't rocket science.
    Most toilet bowls rinse with water. Water cleans.
    If the water doesn't touch the bowl, it doesn't clean.

    The trapway on the five and the six has a sharp bend where it leaves the bowl.
    Most plugs are there.

    [​IMG]
    You will notice that the TOTO trapyway points the waste down the drain.
    The Kohler trapway doesn't.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2009
  13. achutch

    achutch New Member

    Messages:
    193
    Location:
    Vermont
    It was a Class 5. I bought it in 2004 based on info from the Kohler web site, and well before I discovered Terry's site. The rinse on the Class 5 was unacceptable, and so was the waste of the money that I spent on it. I limped with it for a year before I discovered Terry's site.

    My Toto Drake, which replaced the Cimarron has been in place since 2005 has not been a disappointment. It doesn't plug, it rinses well, and it is of top quality with no defects. (My A S Cadet in the half bath also rinses well and doesn't clog. But you need to inspect the bowl in the store, because there are quality control issues with that brand, as many report here, plus I also experienced (2 bad bowls brought back to the store)).

    In my case, both toilets do what I need them to do, and both are keepers.

    achutch
  14. cquan

    cquan New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Location:
    KY
    Cimarron Class 6 Installation Problem

    It seems like the Cimarron bowls aren't being molded/cast properly. I have returned THREE of these to Lowe's because they won't sit flat on the floor. Every one of them has rocked to some degree. I initially set them down without the wax ring just to make sure they fit properly and even bolted one down and it still rocked a bit. I know my floor is OK because I had it redone a few years ago. The original 3.5 gallon toilet was fine. Then I got a Jacuzzi Perfecta and the plumber had no problem. I actually removed and reset the Jacuzzi twice myself (when I thought I was installing a Kohler) and it would not rock. I've found out that the Kohlers I tried have some "ridges" or "support points" on the bottom that have been higher than the outer edges of the bowl. This is a no-brainer: the bowl WILL rock in these cases and WON"T SIT FLAT. I even went back to Lowes and opened a sealed box and PROVED to them that these were not cast right. This is easy, just turn the bowl over, then pass a straight edge across the bottom. If it stops or encounters resistance, then something isn't right. I called Kohler and they pretty much just blew me off. Too, bad, because I like the style and the ease of installation of the tank. BUT NOW, FORGET KOHLER. If they aren't willing to at least listen, then I'm going to another brand. I'm going to try the Cadet 3, which has gotten good reviews. I have talked to a very reputable plumber and he has had the same experience, so it's not just me ! Maybe Kohler will read this and DO SOMETHING !!
  15. Lots to Learn

    Lots to Learn New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Boulder CO
    Running Kohler Toilet Class Five

    I know running toilets are not a challenging question on this site, but I hope you'll have the patience to give me some suggestions. Brand new Kohler K-3489 toilet with Class Five flushing system installed last night is running. Water level looks okay (as does everything else). I think my next step is to check the fill valve for debris, correct? I can't imagine a leak around the flapper since it is new. Anyway, if so, how do I pop off the red cover to inspect the seal of the fill valve? Forgive me if it's obvious-- I'm very slow and very cautious, and also very tired (two steps fwd, one step back it seems).

    BTW here's a video of the problem:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V9ZmZo6Zim4
  16. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,360
    Location:
    New England
    WHere is the water level in the tank? If it never gets high enough to flow out the overflow tube, then it is indeed the flapper valve leaking (almost always, but there are a few other possibilities). If you shut the supply off, does the water level go down? My guess is yes. So, the flapper is defective. Kohler is my last choice of a toilet.
  17. Hackney plumbing

    Hackney plumbing Homeowner

    Messages:
    1,174
    Location:
    Alabama
    One of two things. You could have a defective fill valve or there is trash under the seal that under the red cap. Turn the water off and disconnect the plastic rod with the phillips head screw on top of it that adjusts the water level up or down,it just snaps out. Then let the lever from the red cap drop into its natural down position and rotate the lever and the red cap counter clockwise.It should lift off now. Now check for debris and wash out as needed. Re-install in reverse order. If that doesn't work,replace the valve with the exact type....I'm not sure if that toilet requires a high refill rate for the bowl...if it does make sure you get a comparible ballcock for replacement. Preferably the original from the manufacturer since its new. That ballcock is made by Fluidmaster for kohler.
  18. maddog

    maddog Engineer

    Messages:
    129
    Location:
    near San Jose, CA.
    I think there is a one year warranty on the toilet. The fluidmaster fill valve should be covered. You can give Kohler a call at 1-800-4KOHLER (1-800-456-4537).
  19. Lots to Learn

    Lots to Learn New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Boulder CO
    Ah ha!

    Well, there you go. I was sure it couldn't be the flapper, and it's the flapper. The water level drops to the flapper and stays there. Thank you for the suggestions! (I never could get that fill valve cap off.) How ridiculous is that on a new toilet?

    Yeah, I picked up on how generally reviled Kohler is on this website, but that wasn't until after I ordered it (to match the Kohler vessel sink).

    But I really can't complain. Hypothetically speaking imagine that it ended up being free because of an unrelated flaw in the glaze. (Which is also why in this hypothetical situation I would need to fix this myself-- hypothetically speaking it would have been "scrapped in the field.")

    And I figure that even with its flaws it still has got to be better than what the high-volume builder put in 18 years ago.
  20. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,360
    Location:
    New England
    I haven't opened up a Fluidmaster valve for awhile, but they used to require you to press down, and turn 1/16-turn or so, then it came apart. Once apart, the seal could be replaced. The instructions should be on their website. Make sure to turn the water supply off first!
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