Toilet leaks can range from small to large, constant or random. Many are even silent. Even a small, silent
leak can easily waste $50 per year in water and sewer costs. Large leaks can waste much more.
Fortunately, most toilet leaks are relatively easy to fix. In a properly functioning toilet, no water should move
from the tank to the bowl, unless the toilet is being flushed. A leaking toilet loses water from the tank to the
bowl without being flushed. Check your toilets for leaks at least once a year. Slow, silent toilet leaks are
very common. Water also goes down the drain when toilets are prone to occasional "running," "hanging up,"
"sticking," etc. Also be aware that the cleaning products you use – especially those you put in the back of
the tank – may be corrosive and eat away at the “innards” making them wear away more quickly and leak.
The benefits of replacing toilets
Old toilets are water hogs, using up to 5 gallons per flush compared to 1.6 gallons for toilets sold since 1994.
Replacing old toilets with newer models in your home will save $50 to $125 and up to 10,500 gallons each
year, depending on utility rates and usage habits.
Save With Every Flush: Did you know that toilets are the biggest water wasters in the home? Whether you have a very old toilet or a modern model, the new generation of 1.28 gallons per flush WaterSense toilets and the 1.6 gallons per flush FlushStar toilets will save you water and money. Most households can easily save thousands of gallons of water and more than $100 a year on utility bills by installing a WaterSense toilet, without sacrificing performance.
Fixing Toilet Leaks Unknown water use is most often the result of a leaking toilet. Sometimes toilet leaks aren't seen or heard. It is a good idea to check for a leaking toilet at least once a year.
Fill valve problem A fill valve problem will cause water to flow over the "overflow tube", either because the water level is set too high or it won't shut the water off. If you can't adjust the water level lower or can't get the fill valve to shut off, replace the fill valve. Pedestal fill valves are considered more reliable than the ball and float type.
Bad flapper If you had water run into the bowl during the dye test and the water level is not set too high, your flapper is probably leaking and it should be replaced. If your old flapper has a float on the chain, make sure your new one does too (or put the old float on the new chain). When replacing a toilet flapper, remember that it is very important to replace it with the proper flapper model for your toilet. Using a standard flapper in many 1.6 gallon toilets can make the toilet flush up to 3.5 gallons per flush (except FlushStar models).
Flapper Hint Flappers should be changed at least once a year (along with your smoke alarm batteries). It is important to get the right flapper for your specific model of toilet. If you settle for a one-size-fits-all flapper, you’re likely to use more water with each flush. For more information on what flapper you need, click here.
Replacing the Flapper
NOTE: The top edge of the flush valve outlet should be smooth and free of pits and calcium deposits as this serves as the sealing surface.