Ways to identify a leaky toilet
An undetected toilet leak can waste as much as five gallons of water per minute, which can cost up to $100 per month. Toilet leaks occur in two ways and are often very difficult to detect.
The most common toilet leak, and often the hardest to detect, is caused by a deteriorated flush valve (flapper) at the bottom of the toilet tank. If the flapper valve does not seat properly and form a water tight seal, water will leak around it into the toilet bowl. Often, this leak will occur without being heard.
Solutions to fix flush valve leaks:
- Remove the lid from the tank.
- Flush the toilet.
- Wait until the tank and bowl have refilled completely and the water has stopped.
- If the water will not stop then there is no need to proceed with the test -- you have a leak and the flush valve needs to be replaced.
- For slower, more difficult to detect leaks, add one toilet leak detection tablet (these tablets are available at Utilities) or a few drops of food coloring can be used in place of the dye tablet.
- Wait several minutes for the tablet to dissolve or the food coloring to completely color the water in the tank.
- If any of the colored water from the tank finds its way into the bowl, the flush valve is not sealing properly and needs to be replaced.
- If no leaks are detected, simply replace the tank lid.
- If a leak is detected, you must determine what type of flush valve you have and replace it.
- There are several different styles of valves, know what you have before going to the home improvement center.