The toilet flapper is an important part of your toilet. However, as it grows old, it can start to go bad and eventually need to be replaced. The toilet flapper is the flush valve seal, and it is a plug that falls against the drain hold. It is located on the bottom of the tank, and it holds the water in the tank until you flush the toilet. The flapper usually lasts around four or five years, and then you will need to replace it.
It is important to know when it is going bad so that you can replace it right away. If it stops working, it can cause leaking and create damage to your bathroom. Read on to learn how to tell if the toilet flapper is bad.
Your Toilet Is Running
If your toilet is running, the flapper might be bad. If it is not closing the tank of the toilet from the drain, the toilet will continue to put water into the tank. The handle is connected to the lever that lifts the flapper when you flush, and you can try to jiggle it to make the flapper seal. If this happens more than once, there is a good chance that the flapper is going bad and will need to be replaced soon.
Check the Flapper Itself
You can also lift the lid off of the tank and check the flapper. If your toilet is running, the tank won’t have very much water inside. The flapper is on the bottom of the tank, and you can touch it. It could be made of either plastic or black rubber. If it is plastic, when it becomes old it will start to be brittle and pieces might even fall apart. If it is rubber, you may notice the black coming off in little pieces.
When you examine the flapper, you might find that it has gone bad, and you will need to replace it. You should turn the water source off at the base of the toilet. You will see a handle that is attached to the wall. This will stop the toilet from running. Buy a new flapper and replace it before you turn the water back on.
Examine the Toilet Chain
Another way to check the flapper is to look at the toilet chain. It connects the rod of the handle that flushes the toilet to the flapper. It has a small eyelet that connects to the flapper to lift it when you flush. If the eyelet hole or the hook rips off, the flapper will need to be replaced. The chain might ball up under it, but you won’t be able to flush because it will no longer connect to the handle.
This is a simple replacement, and it is inexpensive. Just make sure that you know the size of your flapper when you go to the hardware store. You can replace it and it will be working again in no time.
The main reason to make sure that you know when your toilet flapper is going bad is that it causes your toilet to run. A bad flapper can actually waste as much as 200 gallons of water a day. If you have city water, this can lead to a huge water bill.
Replacing a toilet flapper is a fairly straightforward task, and it is inexpensive to buy. It should cost less than $20. You can find a toilet flapper at any store that sells plumbing supplies. When you look inside the tank, the system is there and you can see how simple it is to take the old flapper and chain out, put the new one in, and connect the chain. Leave a little slack in the chain to make sure that the flapper seals all the way.