If you notice your toilet isn’t flushing properly, it could be a tank issue. Lift the lid (if it’s accessible) of your toilet tank and take a look inside. This tank runs clean water, which helps your toilet flush. If the tank is empty, there could be a problem.
At The Otter Guys we specialize in home and business plumbing across Charlottesville, VA. Working closely with local families, we’ve come to know a thing or two about empty toilet tanks and how to fix them.
Generally, if you notice an empty tank, it means one of three things:
- Something needs to be replaced
- The toilet needs to be updated
- It’s time to call a plumber
Here, we’ll talk a bit about why your toilet tank might be empty and how it can be fixed.
Fill Valve Issue
The fill valve in your toilet controls how much water comes into your tank after you flush and use the reserves. The fill valve gets a workout over time and can slip out of place. If your valve isn’t sitting right in the tank, you can readjust it to manage water levels.
Adjusting the fill valve is something you can do yourself or call a plumber for help. If you move the valve yourself, follow these steps:
- Open your toilet tank
- Turn water level adjustment rod screw until the float cup moves
- Moving the float cup up raises the water, and down lowers the water
- Flush the toilet to check progress
- Repeat process until your toilet fills correctly
- Replace the toilet tank lid
Never force anything that doesn’t want to move in your toilet. If you try to turn the screw and it’s stuck, it’s best to call a professional for help. Forcing the screw could damage the adjustment rod. If you break the rod, you’ll be out a part and need to have it replaced to flush your toilet properly.
Old Float Ball
If your toilet is older, it likely has an object called a float ball inside. As the name implies, this little ball floats on the top of the water in your tank. It tells your toilet tank how high the water should fill. If the float ball is too low in the tank, your water level will reflect this.
Like the fill valve, you can manually fix the position of your float ball without a professional. To do so, follow these steps:
- Open toilet tank
- Carefully slide a finger beneath float arm and lift upward slightly
- The float ball should move and the tank should fill
- Replace tank lid
Flush the toilet and watch the ball position if it resumes its low level in the tank, it might need to be replaced. An old float ball isn’t a huge problem, but it does mean a trip to the hardware store or a call to your local plumber. In Charlottesville, VA you shouldn’t have a problem locating a float ball, but if you do, we can help.
Toilet Trip Lever Isn’t Working
The handle you use to flush your toilet from the outside of the tank is connected to a trip lever inside. If the internal trip level isn’t working, the toilet won’t flush, and the tank won’t fill. Unfortunately, most trip lever problems require a new lever.
To see if the lever is the issue, remove the lid of your toilet tank and look inside. The lever is near the handle, inside the tank. It commonly looks like a long metal rod, bent to resemble a lever. This is connected to the flush valve.
Flush the toilet with the tank lid off and watch the trip lever. If the lever doesn’t move, isn’t connected to the valve, or moves but the toilet still doesn’t flush, it could require some fixing. Trip assembly is delicate, and if it’s not positioned properly, it could be the difference between a flushing toilet and a broken one.
At The Otter Guys, we don’t recommend you try to fix a broken trip lever by yourself. The biggest issue is that the trip lever connects so many other parts of your flushing mechanism. If you damage something else in the process it could mean spending more time and money on the resolution.
Contact The Otter Guys Today!
If you’re experiencing problems with your toilet tank and you live in Charlottesville, VA, The Otter Guys is on the job. We work with homeowners and businesses across the city and are happy to help. Contact us today to be in touch to a member of our team and to learn more about how we can help.