One quick way to know if your toilet flapper needs to be replaced (or not)…

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Gary asked us about toilet flappers and how he can tell if one needs to be replaced (or not).

Video watch time: 2 min 9 sec – transcribed below

Quick Trick to Check Toilet Flapper

We’ve got a great trick for you to check your toilet flapper! Quite often people just think it’s the flapper – “Oh, my toilet is constantly running, it must be the flapper.” That’s not always the case.

Here’s an easy quick way to know if your flapper needs to be replaced…

  1. Household food coloring (darker color)
  2. Put about 10 drops of food coloring into the toilet tank (where all the mechanisms are, not the bowl part where all the action happens)
  3. Visually see for sure that the water is noticeably colored
  4. Don’t touch anything else
  5. Wait 10 – 30 min (an ample amount of time)
  6. Check bowl for colored water (if colored, flapper is leaking)

Is toilet flapper leaking?

Color in Bowl: Sometimes you’ll see the color right away inside the bowl of the toilet. Sometimes it takes an ample amount of time to see color. BUT if you see coloring inside the bowl, it’s the flapper leaking.

No Color: If you give it time but don’t see any color transfer into the toilet bowl, your flapper is probably in good shape.

No color – But toilet still running?

If the water isn’t coming through in a color, you might have a fill valve that’s not properly adjusted or failing. If the float isn’t adjusted properly, it’s never going to fully turn off the water. It just fills up close to turning off and then the water drops down a little bit, then it’s going to fill up some more, and it sounds like it’s running all the time – because it is.

How long should toilet parts last?

Toilet parts should last a minimum of 5 years. Depending on water quality and type & brand of toilet, sometimes they last longer than that, sometimes less than that. You might get 10 or 15 years without having to touch a toilet or fool with any repairs.

Should I repair just 1 toilet or all the toilets?

The most common scenario is when you start seeing one toilet give you a little bit of trouble (they were all installed likely at the same time), plan on doing more than just the one toilet. Do all the toilets in the house at the same time. That way, you don’t have to spend every Saturday for the next 2 months repairing toilets.

Or if you hire a plumber, if you were to call us, we always recommend rebuilding ALL the toilets in one shot at the same time. You can reset the clock and avoid constant hassles of repairs. We recommend if you were to do it yourself, that’s also the way to go.

Helpful Toilet Blog Articles:

Here are a few helpful blog posts about toilets…

Need a Plumber for Your Toilet..

Does your toilet need to be repaired or replaced? Call Trinity Plumbing.

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