As one of the most worked fixtures in the bathroom, our toilets need to be at their peak performance. But, understandably from time to time, some of us may experience issues when trying to flush the toilet. However, alongside the inconvenience, a toilet that doesn't flush properly can become a source of hygienic issues.
Fortunately, there are a few common reasons for this problem that can be easily fixed. Here, The Bathroom Showroom identifies four of the most common causes of toilets not flushing properly and helps you solve them.
Is Your Toilet Clogged?
A clogged toilet is the most common reason why a toilet doesn't flush properly. However, it may not instantly seem obvious what the blockage is here as it can build over time. Whether through unflushable items put down the toilet or simply too much toilet paper, such things can cause a blockage further down the toilet, the u bend, and into the pipes.
A clogged toilet will usually take longer to flush each time. Or, you may well start to notice that when flushing, the water level rises higher than usual and doesn't look normal. This is because the water is struggling to get around the blockage and is backing up around it.
Clogged toilets can usually be solved by using a plunger. The vacuum effect created by the plunger will work to break up and dislodge the clog and unblock the toilet again so the water can run freely once more.
Are The Water Levels in Your Toilet Cistern Too low?
Yet another common reason for toilets not flushing properly is not having enough water in the cistern. Every time we flush our toilets, this action releases water from the cistern into the toilet bowl below, thus creating a suction effect. So, without the right supply of water, the toilet can't work properly to dispose of the waste.
A toilet that doesn't have enough weather in its cistern will result in a weaker flush each time. Or, you may find that you get to a point where you can't flush the toilet at all.
Low water levels in the cistern can be topped up manually. This is done by changing the level of water at the fill valve and turning the adjustment screw on the valve anti-clockwise. For those cisterns with a balloon float here instead, you can simply give the float a gentle bend to increase the water level.
Is Your Toilet Lift Chain Broken?
One of the most important parts of a toilet, if your lift chain needs adjustment or is broken, the handle of your toilet won't work correctly. You’ll be able to spot this issue if you find you can't raise the toilet handle at all or when you do, your flush doesn't run or it doesn't stop running. Sometimes, with this issue, many hear the sound of a clunking chain each time they flush.
A simple part to swap out, if you do experience issues with your lift chain, it’s important to address them immediately. You may well be able to solve the issue before your toilet lift chain breaks completely. Repairing a lift chain is an inexpensive task and certainly cheaper than having to pay for plumbing services later on.
Sometimes the lift chain may simply need a little adjustment. This is especially so if you find that the chain is too long and has increased slack. Yet, as with most parts, the lift chain can also corrode over time, and may just need an entire swap out.
Is There Any Damage to the Flapper?
Finally, the flapper, found at the bottom of your toilet overflow tube, works by letting water flow from your tank and into the bowl each time you flush. A round rubber disc, this vital part ‘flaps’ each time it opens and releases water.
If your toilet flapper has become warped, corroded, damaged, or has simply bent due to wear and tear, it means the toilet won't be able to hold water in its cistern. So, it will be unable to release the water needed each time you try to flush.
However, this is perhaps the easiest and relatively inexpensive job to fix if you do have this problem. Flappers are simple to find and replace and all you need to do is take out the current one and be sure you get the same part when buying a new one, whether online or in-store.
Act Early To Keep Your Toilet Working Good As New
If you can act on any issues caused by your toilet not flushing correctly as soon as they arise, you can work to prevent significant problems later on. You can also potentially save a lot of time, hassle, and indeed money by solving simple issues such as these mentioned above, by yourself.
But, if you still find you're having problems, it may be worth getting professional help to identify the issue. This will ensure not only do you get your toilet back up and running quickly but also rule out potentially complex issues that may need further investigation here.
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