New Water Line Installation

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice, Tips & ' started by Antonio, Aug 12, 2013.

  1. Antonio

    Antonio New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    British Columbia
    I am adding an additional bathroom on the 3rd story of my house. I ran new water lines from the 3rd floor to the basement and tied into existing cold and hot water lines. The existing lines are PEX and I used PEX to tie in. When I turned the water back on it appeared that all had gone well, nothing was leaking. A while later I noticed that one of the toilets on my main (2nd) floor did not refill after being flushed. It made a bit of a gurgle as well as if something had moved in to block the water flow. Within that same washroom is a vanity which works fine and beside that bathroom is a laundry closet and the washer also appears to be working fine. These would all be on the same cold water run. I shut off my master valve to the house and drained the lines from a faucet in the basement. When I turned the master shut off back on, the tank of the problematic toilet filled up without issue. After 3-4 flushes the problem came back. I repeated this process 2-3 more times and the problem persists. Does this sound like something physically blocking the shut off valve or could I have screwed something up in the system when I tied in the new lines. Could I have some sort of air lock?
  2. sethamin

    sethamin New Member

    Messages:
    23
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY, United States
    If you were running copper, I'd suggest that maybe some flux or bits of solder got into the toilet fill valve and blocked it up. That's not likely since you're running PEX, but maybe some other type of sediment or debris got into your line while you were working on it. I'd try cleaning out the fill valve on that toilet to see if that's the problem.
  3. Antonio

    Antonio New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Thanks- It is an old house and there is still some copper within the system so debris is certainly possible. Is it possible to cause issues like this by tying into the system in the wrong place? Does it matter where you tie into a run?
  4. Tom Sawyer

    Tom Sawyer In the Trades

    Messages:
    3,068
    Location:
    Maine
    Pull the supply line from the toilet tank. Aim it into a bucket and turn the valve on. If you get water yo need to either flush the fill valve or replace it.
  5. Antonio

    Antonio New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Thanks Tom- I'll give that a shot. To be clear, when you say "if you get water you need to either flush the fill valve or replace it" you referring to the fill valve within the tank of the toilet correct?
  6. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,270
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    If it is a Fluidmaster fill valve, they do sometimes fail so they will only fill the tank after the water is turn off and then back on.
  7. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,770
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Yes he means the fill valve in the toilet tank. An easy one to install is the Korky 528mp Maxperformance fill valve. You will see Terry recommend it a lot here on this forum. Available at your local ace or Lowes and many other places.
  8. Antonio

    Antonio New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Ok, so here is what I tried last night and the order in which I tried it. With no water coming into the tank I turned the shut-off to the off position and disconnected the supply line at the tank. I then turned the shut off to the on position and still no water came out of the supply line. I turned the shut off back to the off position and disconnected the supply line at the shut off (the line is now disconnected at both ends). At that point I turned the water back on and I had an unrestricted flow of water. I checked the supply line (which was disconnected) and it was clear of debris and I could blow through it without issue. I reinstalled the supply line to the toilet and it began to fill the tank. After a few seconds of filling I realized that the tank fill valve was not rising to stop the water supply on its own so I lifted it by hand. This lead me to believe that as you guys suggest, the fill valve is toast. However, after a few more flushes the water supply stopped again and in order to get it to work again I had to repeat the first part of the process I mentioned above. I now realize that the fill valve within the tank is faulty but I guess my real question is how could the fill valve cause a water lock within the line?? Is this possible or is my problem bigger than a faulty fill valve??

    Thanks again for everyone's help.
  9. dj2

    dj2 Member

    Messages:
    399
    Location:
    California
    I would replace the fill valve, the supply line and the angle stop.
  10. nukeman

    nukeman Nuclear Engineer

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    VA
  11. Antonio

    Antonio New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Nukeman- that makes a lot of sense. I had no idea these lines existed. I am not at home but I can almost say for certain this is the problem. I'll replace the supply line and the fill valve.
  12. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,770
    Location:
    New York, NY
    If your toilet was made before the 1.6 gallons per flush standard came into effect, here's one that will work well and be easy to install: http://www.lowes.com/pd_101071-868-...UserSearch=korky 528&productId=1000333&rpp=32

    If it is 1.6 gallons per flush or less, than this one would work better in your toilet (because it has an adjustable refill ratio): http://www.lowes.com/pd_336988-868-...korky maxperformance&productId=3284948&rpp=32

    There are videos on youtube showing how to put them in. For example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gw7HvHtaA84
  13. Antonio

    Antonio New Member

    Messages:
    6
    Location:
    British Columbia
    Thanks for everyone's help. I changed out the fill valve and the supply line and it is working perfectly. The supply line was definitely Floodsafe and was not working correctly. Thanks again- Antonio
  14. nukeman

    nukeman Nuclear Engineer

    Messages:
    708
    Location:
    VA
    Good to hear. The Floodsafe hose is a good idea in theory, but can have issues in practice. Even without the failures shown in that other thread, they can cause strange behavior (like you saw). The strange behavior usually pops up after you have shut of the water to do some work. Many people don't realize that they have the Floodsafe hoses and then they run into this kind of behavior and can't figure out what is going on.
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