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Detecting Leaks in Toilet

Posted on: September 17th, 2013 by admin

You know your toilet is leaking, but not sure where it is coming from?

Leaks in the toilet are leading reasons for a high water bill. It is easy to see if a faucet is dripping and get it fixed in time. But a slow and silent leak in the toilet is not always obvious and can lead to major leakage over a period of time without one realizing it. This not only leads to major water wastage but also a whopping water bill which can severely cripple your finances. An estimated 1 trillion gallon water leakage happens all over American annually while the monthly leakage figures can range from anywhere between 300 gallons to 60,000 gallons depending on whether it is a slow leak or a running toilet.

The figures are shocking especially when you are faced with a high water bill and the damage it is causing to the environment. Industry studies show that majority of the sanitation and plumbing complaints are filed to take of leaking toilets. The slow leaks in fact are more serious problems as these can go undetected for a long time and lead to massive water wastage which homeowners often remain unaware of till they receive their monthly water bill. Fortunately, there are ways to prevent this problem. One can apply some simple tips to detect toilet leaks and apply prevention methods for future wastage.

Tips for detecting leaks in the toilet

Tips #1 – One way to detect the leaking water is to put some food coloring into the tank and wait for around 15 minutes. If the color starts to appear in the bowl then there is definitely a leak. In most cases, replacing the flapper valve will solve the problem. Alternatively you can blue dye tablets to check the leakage. There may be other small parts that need repair or replacement. Simple repair kits are available in all hardware sections and are quite inexpensive so that one can carry out these repairs at home easily. Homeowners should conduct this test at least twice a year to check if everything is in working order and prevent water leaks from becoming major problems.

Tip #2 – Another way is to conduct the talcum powder test. Take a pinch of the powder and spread it over the water in the toilet tank. If the powder drifts slowly towards the overflow tube of the tank then there is an overflow leak in the toilet. In this case the float valve will need replacing to solve the problem and prevent further leakage. One can also conduct this test with a pinch of flour instead of talcum powder.

Tip #3 – Some toilets run only during the night which can also lead to major water leakage even though they function perfectly well during the day. Due to low water usage during the night the water pressure tends to rise during this time. This leads to water creeping into the gravity-fed tank by 1/2 inch or sometimes more. Chances are the water level in a tank is set too high which is causing this problem. Resetting the level at approximately one inch below the top of the overflow tube will prevent further water leakage.


Tip #4 – At times the water leakage occurs due to flush handle problems. If one has to constantly jiggle the handle after use then the handle, flush level bar or the chain may be dysfunctional. At time adjusting the nut that secures it in the toilet tank can be enough to stop the running water. Else, the handle may need replacing.

Tip #5 – One of the easiest and sure ways to prevent water wastage is to call in professionals. Expert plumbing companies will send their technicians to check the exact problem and fix it in no time. This is great not just for the current problem but for all possible problem lurking within which may not be obvious to amateurs. They will check the water meter for leaks, all indoor and outdoor faucets, hoses and pipes connected to relevant appliances as well.

Get in touch with experts for long term solutions in leaking toilets and prevent your water bill from rising.

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