Toilet Never Stops Running....

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by daddylogan, Mar 14, 2013.

  1. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Hello,

    Have a toilet that never stops running and don't know what to do and it makes bubbly sounds at times. It also sometimes does not flush completely (like maybe every 10th time or so). I am including a picture of the inside of my tank. Any help or advice would be greatly appreciated ;-)

    INSIDE TANK:

    [​IMG]

    SHUT OFF VALVE:

    [​IMG]

    Thank folks!!!

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,797
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    toilet

    Nice pictures, unfortunately, they show us NOTHING about why it doesn't shut off. We would have to be there while it is happening to see which, of several possibilities, condition is causing it.
  3. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Sorry I wasn't more descriptive hj. Basically the toilet sounds like it is "trickling" all the time and I believe the water is leaking into the bowl because I can see the water moving inside the bowl while it is making noise. Then sometimes it makes a bubbling sound along with the trickling. Basically, does this sound like an internal part or is the toilet just gone bad? I suppose I could should video with sound if that would help? Let me know what you would like me to do or provide ;-)

    Thanks

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  4. MichaelBukay

    MichaelBukay Plumber

    Messages:
    50
    Location:
    San Diego, California
    did you replace the seal for the flush valve (mansfield #210)? it appears to be a Mansfield. It's a red rubber ring at the base of the flush valve. Maybe it's a crack in the overflow tube somewhere down below water line if not the seal.
  5. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,126
    Location:
    New England
    A leaking toilet can provide a HUGE surprise when you get your next water bill, so you're right to address this as fast as you can. While you're at it, the shutoff valve and hose (I think that's a one-piece design, both come together) is not ideal, either. You may want to consider replacing that as well. If you move that metal hose at all, it might crack, then you'd have an even bigger problem. Your immediate problem is almost certainly the seal. That is, unless the water level is rising so far that it's running down the overflow tube from the tank (it's normal for water to go out there during a refill, but it must shut off eventually). If the toilet's fill valve isn't shutting off and the tank level is rising to the overflow, then you should consider replacing the fill valve. It might be possible to service the existing fill valve, but they're pretty cheap, so replacement is likely the more reasonable alternative. Because you have to move the supply line, and yours is that metal type, please then also replace the shutoff at the wall and install a new hose on it...do not try to reuse what you have there.
  6. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Thank you very much for the response! I am green when it comes to this plumbing stuff so what seal are you talking about and where is is located? Is the seal part of the fill valve? I also thought most toilets have a flapper but mine looks like it has something different that opens when the handle is flushed...could that be part of the problem? This is why I posted a picture of both (the inside the tank and the shut off) because I need to learn and that shut off looks really old and musty so I am glad you said something jadnashua!!! Hope to hear from ya again and thank you!!!

    BTW...would a new fill valve get rid of that horrible float ball???? LOL

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,126
    Location:
    New England
    If the tank isn't overflowing, then it's leaking from the flush valve...the part that moves when you push the flush lever. My guess is that a standard fill valve will fit. They all are adjustable so you get the right tank fill, but not all are adjustable to get the proper bowl fill. Most of them overfill the bowl, so when water is dear, like it is in much of the west, that's to be avoided. Korky makes one that is easy to setup, and comes with instructions on how to easily get both the bowl and tank fill to the proper level. A toilet will not flush well if both are not setup properly. A new fill valve should fit right in and yes, will have it's own water height adjustment (i.e., some other way to manage the shutoff). The two big toilet fill valve manufacturers are Korky and Fluidmaster. There are millions of them installed. Of the two, I prefer the Korky, but some prefer the Fluidmaster...they both work. Korky makes one that is easily adjustable for virtually any toilet.
  8. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    So can the flush valve be replaced without removing the tank? I have watched YouTube videos on how to replace the fill valve (which when I looked in the tank today it seems the noise is coming from that) and that seems straight forward enough but that flush valve looks tricky. My tank is most definitely not overfilled and why I think it has flushing problems every so often (not enough water to make a good flush?)

    Thanks

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  9. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,891
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Here are the instructions for the Korky 427BP replacement seal. Your problem is most likely that seal. Could be other things but the seal is the place to start. And it's easy to replace.

    http://korky.com/PDF/427BP.pdf

    Replacing the rubber seal is probably your easiest first step. It's easy to replace the flush valve with the standard Korky flush valve with a flapper, but you do have to remove and reinstall the tank, which is more physical labor than replacing the fill valve.

    Get yourself a Korky 528 fill valve and swap that out, and I think you'll be happy with the combo.
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2013
  10. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Ok...went and got my Korky 528 (thanks wjcandee) and I got a new flush valve ring. Those should be easy enough even for this beginner. However I have some confusion over replacing the angle valve. I told the guy a Lowe's I wanted to replace it and showed him the above pic on my cell phone. He then gave me 3/8 x 5/8 valve and a new piece of flex hosing. I said I wanted to replace the chrome ring cover also and then is when he said I would be getting into a big mess if I wanted to do that. He told me I would either have to cut off the compression ring or get a compression ring puller in order to get to the flange and then I would have to install the new nut and compression ring after putting the new flange on. Now, this may be right but when I had a handyman replace my downstairs toilet about a year ago, he replaced all that and I never heard him say he had to cut anything off and I also could swear it was a 1/2 x 3/8 valve he put in? I am a little lost on all this so could someone explain what they think I might need to do by looking at my existing valve in the above photo. Thanks again...feel like I am learning some basics ;-)

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  11. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,126
    Location:
    New England
    Your picture is out of focus (next time, you may find selecting the macro or closeup setting works best) so I can't tell for sure. If that valve is the type I think it is, it is a push-on fit...no wrench or nut required to install it. It can be a pain to remove, though, as it has one-way teeth holding it on. If it is a compression fitting, it will have a nut on the back side of the valve. Loosen that so it is free of the valve, and the valve will slide off. If there's no nut there, I don't remember how to replace it, but it has been discussed here before. It will come off, though, not sure of the technique required. If the thing does have a compression valve on it, if it was overtightened, the compression ring may be hard to remove without a puller, but it may (reluctantly) pull off. The decorative flanges are readily available and cheap, just make sure to install it before you put a new valve back on. To install a new compression valve, you need two wrenches: one to hold the valve steady and the second one to tighten the nut. While by no means necessary, I find if you put a drop of oil on the threads, the nut tightens smoother than if you don't. Worst case, they do make split, hinged flanges that might fit behind and cover the old one, or pry and cut it off first if you can't use one of the slide-on ones.
  12. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Hows this!!! ;-)

    [​IMG]

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  13. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,126
    Location:
    New England
    Much better picture, but with the flats for a wrench, it's either a compression fitting or there's a threaded nipple there, and the whole thing screws on via a pipe thread. Since there are also flats on the body of the valve, I'd guess (but do not know!) that it's a compression fitting. So, don't start this while the store may be closed! I'd shut the house water off, drain the tank, put a wrench on the body of the valve, then try to unscrew the nut behind it and see what happens. To properly install a compression fitting, you'd normally need a little more pipe length sticking out. You need that extra length for the nut to extend back towards the wall while you push the valve onto the end of the pipe and maintain it bottomed out against the end of the pipe while tightening the nut. If there's no space there, the valve may not end up bottomed out on the pipe, and thus the compression ring may not be positioned properly (i.e., it could end up too close to the end of the pipe) and make sealing problematic. I'd definitely want to take this opportunity to change the flange around it...
  14. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Thanks jadnashua!!! I think I have it all memorized now on the procedures. Have the toilet apart right now to put in the new fill valve and new flush valve seal. What a mess...it is like someone poured ink in the tank once I got the fill valve loose (I guess this is from old black rubber washers/gaskets?). Had to stop and clean everything and rinse me off!!!! LOLOLOL Hopefully when I get the angle valve apart, that I can grab the old compression ring with pliers and wiggle it off. If I can't then I might have to go buy a compression ring removal tool for I have no hack saws or grinders. I think I only have a couple last questions here. First, when I put it back together should I use plumbers tape or dope on any of the fittings? And Lastly, should I always have the valve outlet (where the water exits the angle valve to the flex line) facing UP or does it not matter? Thanks a ton to all who chimmed in on this thread. I will report my progress so that it may help others in the future with a simular issue ;-)

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  15. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,126
    Location:
    New England
    NEVER use tape or dope on the threads or internals of a compression fitting. While you could dab a little dope on the compression ring, it is totally unnecessary. It doesn't matter which way the outlet points - the big thing is you do not want a kink in the line, so often, pointing towards the new fill valve works out.
  16. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Ok...decided to keep it simple today. Save the turn off valve for another day. Right now I just want to get rid of the leaky-running toilet. However I have not good news to report. Here is what I did. I believe I have a Mansfield so first thing after clearing out the old fill valve was to replace the rubber gasket/seal on the flush valve. That was hell in itself because the old one just crumbled and I could not get a grip on the ring itself to get it off. Finally, I got a fingernail file, got it in-between the rubber and pushed until I could grab a good chunk and then get it off. Then I took a toothbrush and cleaned out the lip that it sits it. Put the new one in with no probelm, slipped the housing back over and screwed on the top. Then I put in the fill valve as per directions...no problem..took about 7 minutes to get it lined up with the flush valve, locked in place and then hand tightened under the tank. Connected old water line to hand tight and turned the water back on...no leaks!!! So the toilet starts to fill and when it gets to the top the fill valve shuts off perfectly but guess what??? Water still seeping into the toilet. So I barely push down on the flush valve and the leaking stops. I am going to assume this means the main seal on the flush valve is shot and I need to replace the whole flush valve and tank seals??? What do you think?

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  17. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,126
    Location:
    New England
    Feel where the seal sits to close off the water...it may have some crud on it or be rough. All it may take is to rub your finger around the seat to clean off any crud. If the seal isn't seated properly in the slot, it may get distorted. If the seat isn't smooth, you may need a new flush valve. Also, depending on its storage and age, the gasket may be a little hard...sitting with water pressure on it may straighten it out. The only other thing I can think of is if the seal where the seat attaches has degraded. To fix that, you need to take the tank off, remove the flush valve, and then replace the seal. You'd also want to replace the washers under the head of the bolts holding the tank to the bowl. Once you're done, it should be as good as new. That may or may not be great, but it should last a long time.
  18. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California
    Yeah, I did. Ran my fingers all around and underneath...nothing. I knew this would not go perfect!!!! LOL...Looks like a full rebuild on the tank parts now. Live and learn I suppose. Thanks for all your help ;-)

    peace out,
    daddylogan
  19. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

    Messages:
    1,891
    Location:
    New York, NY
    I would push it down into place on the new seal, as you say this stops the leaking, and let it sit overnight. See if the pressure doesn't make the seal start to work, as Jim suggests.

    I'm glad you like the new fill valve!! If you decide to replace the tower flush thingy, the Korky flush valve kit with flapper has great directions, and works well. I have used it on several toilets, and I'm not lying that it's often a pain in the neck to get the old flush valve off, but once you do, the new parts do go in nicely and easily. Come back if you do that, and we'll give you some tips on remounting the tank so it's stable and doesn't rock.
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2013
  20. daddylogan

    daddylogan New Member

    Messages:
    19
    Location:
    California

    Yes, I liked the ease of the install on the fill valve...thank you! However I did look at the Korky flush valves with flapper and none of them look like my setup. Mine looks like no flapper...just the straight up and down type...guess some call it the "Mansfield"? So I would assume I have to buy the same???

    peace out,
    daddylogan
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