Toilet whirls around, won't flush

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum, Professional & DIY Advice' started by lizzybeth, Feb 19, 2013.

  1. lizzybeth

    lizzybeth New Member

    Feb 19, 2013
    Mukilteo WA
    (I wrote the tile incorrectly; the water doesn't whirl around, it only bubbles.)
    (Also, this is not a low flush toilet but a Kohler 1.6 gallon per flush.)

    I'm a plumber's daughter and this one is new to me, as I have prided myself in fixing anything --- before the fall.

    We've plunged over and over, and it's been an unused toilet now for a couple months. Company's coming.

    The water in the bowl slowly goes down and passes through, but doesn't completely empty the bowl. Then flush and water in the bowl bubbles a bit then fills bowl --- but won't go all the way through.

    Have snaked out to kingdom come with the extended snake.

    The tank is filling properly. I read somewhere that maybe a grandchild's ball had been flushed down when it behaves like this? Water passing through but no "flush." We're on septic, but the upstairs toilet is working fine, so wouldn't think it's an obstruction in the line.

    We'd just go replace it with a Stealth Toilet (have 3 in other homes and very satisfied) but can't find one nearby. (Lowes no longer carrying them.) Any ideas on fixing this one or finding a local Stealth distributor before weekend company arrives. (We shipped Stealths the other times.)
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Aug 31, 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    A problem in the septic CAN affect the lower level toilet without causing any problem with the upstairs one. The sinks and tubs would also work normally. DO NOT change the toilet until you know the REAL reason for the problem, otherwise you will have the same problem with the new one. Call your father or a local plumber for a diagnosis.
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  4. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Sep 1, 2004
    Yakima WA
    Any toilet that is 1.6 gpf is a low flow toilet. True, some of the newer ones now use even less water, the you're still in the low flow generation. Many of the first ones were not very good, the manufactures were trying to tweek their old toilet designs to function with less water and that gave the industry a bad name. That is not you problem. You have either a clogged drain or a clog in the toilet. A children's toy is often the problem, but not the only one. Call dad. If the drain needs clearing, he will have the know how to do it. If it is the toilet clogged, he will be able to deal with that.
  5. Meyerjr

    Meyerjr New Member

    Feb 5, 2016
    Sunnyvale, California
    I know the answer to this problem with this Niagara .8 gallon toilet.

    The rubber seal between the bowl part and the tank part is a very customized part that seals both the large hole and the smaller hole. I misplaced that black rubber part and replaced it with typical round rubber seal. When flushed, it would only leak a little - but would not do a full flush - just swirl around.


    As soon as I re-found the provided seal, the toilet flushes perfect.

    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 5, 2016
  6. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Aug 17, 2004
    Bothell, Washington
    The Stealth needs a special gasket, as it has two openings from the tank to the bowl.
    The problem she had was with a standard Kohler though.
  7. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Sep 2, 2004
    Retired Systems engineer for defense industry.
    New England
    Did you use a toilet auger through the toilet, or remove the toilet when you used the snake? IF you removed the toilet, and the problem persists, the problem is probably IN the toilet, not the line. But, if you used a snake with a small head, they often only punch a small hole in the obstruction, and you need one with a full-diameter cutting head. The other possibility is a belly in the line Once you pull the toilet, is there any standing water in the drain visible?
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