Replacement Toilet Tank?

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by Allfixer, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I have a 1986 Gerber made toilet that was leaking from somewhere so I decided to replace all the tank parts. Still leaking afterwards I found the source from a hair line crack running down the side of the water tank. The only way it looks like it can be fixed is to replace the whole tank. The toilet bowl is in great shape and I am really hopeing to replace just the tank and not the whole toilet.

    Home Depot and Lowes in my area have a large selection where you can purchase a tank alone. My question is, obviously the new tank may not match the bowl aesthetically, but can any one of these tanks fit my toilet without leaking? Or is every tank like a key where it can only fit the bowl it came with?


    My Bowl has a 1.6 GPF requirment and half the tanks at HD are 1.6GPF let through as well. So Gallons per flush wise they match?

    Pics if they help: Thanks :D

    photo a.jpg photo b).jpg photo c).jpg photo d.jpg photo e).jpg
  2. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
  3. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,782
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Gerber didn't have a 1.6 bowl until 1992.
    If your's is 1.6, it's not from 86
    1986 would have been 5.0 or 3.5 gallons.
    It's more important that the bowl match the tank. You may be better off picking up a used toilet is cost is an issue.

    I throw out a dozen better bowls then that every week.
  4. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Ok that makes more sence now. I was going by the upstairs toilet which looks similar, it has a label for a 1.6 GPF and I guess that would explain the smaller opening at the bottom of the bowl.

    Ok now this might sound insane (my knowledge in plumbing is not the best lol) but it might be crazy enough to work. Ive noticed that on some newer replacement tanks (mostly on older stock) there is either a flapper with a second hole in it or a "bucket" around the flapper the prevents the whole tank from emptying. Could I purchase one of these newer 1.6 GPF tanks and remove the water saving flapper and put in a regular one so the whole tank emptys out? My thinking is by draining the whole tank I could get the needed flush water.
  5. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,782
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Toilets with dams in the tanks haven't been made for about twenty years. It was a failed idea.
    I took six of those out of a church last week.

    Changing the flapper may work, switching to a 5.0 gallon flapper.
    Many manufactures changed the bolt patterns to prevent a new 1.6 from being installed on a 3.5 bowl. You would have to experiment.
  6. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Thanks for the quick reply! Very helpful :)

    Ok I did some thinking. The upstairs toilets are also Gerber but one of them looks different. The bowl is a 1.6 GPF/ 6.0 LPF and the tank uses an adjustable fluidmaster flapper I put in a while back. It closes well before the tank is emptyed out but it gets all the waste flushed away without issue. The tank uses 2 bolts like on the one leaking.

    My thinking goes like this, put this tank downstairs to replace the one thats leaking and put in a new 1.6 flush tank from Home Depot or a similar looking one from a recycle shop on toilet upstairs. Im confident that the upstairs tank with a regular flapper will provide the needed flush capacity on the older downstairs model.

    The only thing Im not sure about is whether or not interchanging toilet tanks will work without leaking. Both toilets in question upstairs and down stairs hold the tank down with two bolts and have a regular size flapper that you can get at Home Depot. The replacement tanks at Home Depot and the recycle shop come both in 2 and 3 bolt types.

    Home Depot does not carry Gerber in my area (they might not at all:() and the only Gerbers I could Find at the recycle yard were used ones that had that "bucket" thing in it.

    Question out of all of this, can a replacement tank be from a different manufacturer then the bowl as long as it "fits"(has the 2 bolts)?

    photo 1.jpg photo 2.jpg photo 3.jpg
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    21,816
    Location:
    New England
    You have to measure the distance between the bolts holding the tank to the bowl. Then, measure how thick the tank is and where those holes are in relation to the seat. They are likely different, and even if they are the right distance apart L-R, they may not be F-R, so the tank either hits the wall, or you can't get the seat up. Then, since the hole for the flush valve has to line up as well as the holes that hold the tank on...you add yet another thing that must line up so it can work. The diameter of that flush hole makes a difference, too. You can play with the flapper valves to get the flush volume, but you can't play with the hole location...it will either fit or it won't.
  8. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Again thanks! I will measure them out.

    I spoke with a HD guy and he says its best to replace the whole toilet since the right tank will have to be ordered from Gerber at a supply house and that will cost more. He also brought up there being no guarntee that the bowl wont crack either, dont think so being honset but he does have a point if the bowl will last any longer.

    So my real question now is if you had to buy a new toilet which brand would you choose? Kohler Cadet TOTO American Standard...?
    Home Depot Guy recommended this one saying its cheaper than a replacement tank, is it any good?:

    http://www.homedepot.com/p/Glacier-...oilet-in-White-TL-7600HC-HET/202353004?N=bzax
  9. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,770
    Location:
    New York, NY
    A great quality toilet at a fair price (around 200 if you shop around) is the Toto Drake CST744S which is a 1.6 gpf toilet. The CST744e is a 1.28 which works great and may qualify for a watersense rebate in your jurisdiction which would cut the price. There aren't too many toilets sold by HD that we recommend on here.
  10. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Does Lowes have a better selection on that you would recommened?

    My biggest request is that the toilet be durable over anything else. Dual flush is out of the question.
  11. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,770
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Many of us, professionals and amateurs like myself, on this forum like the Toto product for its consistent quality and excellent flush. If you look at this thread on the Drake, you can see that homeowners do, too. 307 posts since 2006 about this toilet, almost universally-positive.

    http://www.terrylove.com/forums/sho...-toilet-product-review&highlight=drake review

    Terry installs the original Drake CST744S or CST744E in commercial applications like restaurants, churches, etc., as well as homes, so it's durable. A plumber wants to open the box, find everything is in perfect condition, install the toilet, and not come back. You're not going to use the toilet in a commercial application unless it has the fortitude to endure it.

    And in my view it's a bargain for the quality at $200-ish.

    Open the yellow pages to plumbing supply, and call around with the model number and color that you want, and compare prices, which will vary wildly. Look for something around $200. The toilet isn't available at the big box, but all the replacement parts are, except for the handle. The OEM replacement fill valve and flapper are made by Korky in the USA. Simple, solid design that will take you decades along.

    By the way, I own two of them and the family loves them.
  12. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I will shop around and see what is available. Hopefully my plumbing supply in town has it, if not I will try others. One thing, can the Korky Fill valves be replaced with a Fluidmaster 400? In the pic thats on the forum link it looks like the flush lever goes over the fill valve preventing something else from being installed there. I say this because I prefer those fill valves out of all others. Most others Ive dealt with either are noisy, leak, fail or water hammer. If not do you know of any brands that might?
  13. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,770
    Location:
    New York, NY
    You can't use a traditional 400A, because it doesn't have enough refill. I believe that Fluidmaster does make an adjustable one that will give you the proper refill ratio. (40%). I have seen where Terry has said that the Korky is easy for a homeowner to fix, and more advanced technology than the 400A, also quieter and less water hammer than the 400A. Maybe you will like it. Also, when the Korky eventually fails to seal, all you have to do is pop the top and replace a little quarter-sized cap that contains the wear parts, which is available at HD for about $3 (model R528 cap).

    Toto also uses a valve made to its specs by Voreto in China. Most people like them fine; I recently yanked the one out of my Drake because I don't, and replaced it with a 528T (the 528MP also fits, and is available at Lowes as 528MPK), which I find quieter and which doesn't water hammer. But that's kind of a geek move based on personal preference. (My other Drake came with the 528T as original equipment. Which one you get just depends on which factory builds the tank.)
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013
  14. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Im just wondering what do you mean by refill ratio? I guess it has something to do with the float height?

    Do you know of new toilet brands that do take a 400 or already come with one from the factory? I know Im into tradition LOL.
  15. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Went looking around, and the 2 common brands here that look good to me are American Standard Cadet 3 and Kohler Wellworth. Both of these toilets like the TOTO drake Im told use an oversized flush flapper for maximum force. And come with a fluid master standard.

    Before I purchase one this weekend, are these respectable models in terms of durability?

    Is the oversize flush flapper/canister any good or should I go for a standard flapper?
  16. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,782
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    If you are shopping at a Box store:

    The Cadet 3 and the Wellworth will work fine.
    The Cadet has a 3" flush valve, and the Kohler uses a Canister. Not a 3" flushvalve, but it seems to work fine.
  17. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,770
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Of the total amount of water that goes into the fill valve from the wall, the percentage (ratio) that goes into the refill hose and down the overflow riser to refill the bowl after the flush. 1 minus the refill percentage is the percentage that goes into filling the tank.
  18. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,782
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    All of the toilets mentioned have good fill valves in them.

    Often while working on tanks, I wind up using either the Fluidmaster or the Korky.
    I prefer the Korky, but that's mainly because I like a quieter fill without water hammer.
    If don't mind noise, go with the Fluidmaster. Nobody ever got fired for buying IBM, but it was Microsoft that won the day.
  19. Allfixer

    Allfixer New Member

    Messages:
    11
    Location:
    Connecticut


    In your experience are these larger flush valves as reliable as the standard size ones? I ask because the sales guy is recommending the larger flush valves because of the added flush power but on the net there posts of the seals leaking/getting soft plus the repair parts are less common.
  20. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    14,782
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    I sell more TOTO than anything else. They have been very good with the 3" flapper and flush valve. They were the first with it.
    American Standard's first 3", was a tower setup that has been discontinued. They have gone back to a solid backed flapper. That's not to mean that the seal doesn't need replacing like any product submerged in water.
    Koher's first venture into large flappers was their 3.25". They have gone away from that and now use a canister over the seal. They cut down the size at the same time. It's fairly new, so it's too early to say anything.
    The Flushmate pressure assist, when it needs work, has more to do with keeping the inlet screen clean so that the tank will build pressure to flush, and the duckbill assembly. The main cartridge will last a while.
    All flappers need replacement at some time. The old 2" flappers made of black rubber went bad very quickly in some areas. A longer lasting 2" flapper was made with Red Rubber, or whatever they actually put in it to resist chlorine. Those were called five year warranty flappers.
    Generally, keeping any toilet tuned is simple and involves little cost. I can't tell you how many homes I've been in where you can hear water running from the front entry way. Most people seem to tune that noise out.

    [​IMG]

    Standard black 2" flapper with one year warranty
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2013
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