Want to Avoid a Flood? Take Care of That Running Toilet

A Running Toilet Can Cause a Flood

Water damage doesn’t always involve a massive monsoon or major foundation breach. Some floods begin as nothing more than a leaking or running toilet. Let’s examine how the littlest room in the house can create a big flood problem, along with steps you can take to prevent, troubleshoot, and respond to such problems.

Parts of a Toilet

Your toilet is a fairly simple piece of machinery. The toilet bowl has a twisted water trap which sends used water through the toilet drain to the sewer line as fresh water pours into it from the toilet tank. When you flush the toilet, the chain attached to the flush valve open a rubber flapper at the bottom of the tank. At the same time, a fill valve allows fresh water to re-fill the tank until an attached float ball presses against it, closing it off.

As straightforward as this arrangement sounds, it still has several possible failure points that might allow water to leak or the toilet bowl to overflow. If you’re lucky, you have nothing more serious than a rubber flapper that has worn out and needs replacing. A bad flapper won’t cause bathroom flooding, but it will give you a constantly running toilet with a tank that never quite fills up.

Smart Responses

When you flush and see the bowl water level rising to an alarming height, your best friend is a powerful plunger to disrupt any one-time clogs. But if your toilet drain or sewer line is blocked, your next flush could produce a serious overflow that no plunger can stop. You can help prevent this disaster by having your drain and sewer line inspected every year (especially in the spring months, when tree roots tend to intrude upon pipes).

What do you do if your running toilet won’t stop running, or if you see water emerging from some part of the mechanism? First of all, reach down to the water supply valve on the wall and twist it completely shut. This single, simple step could save your bathroom from flood damage. Did you see water spraying out of the hose that attaches the water supply valve to the toilet tank? Chances are that the plastic connector needs replacing. If you notice water on the floor for no clear reason, check to see whether the wax ring underneath the bowl has lost its seal.

Water Damage? Zona Restoration Can Help

If you couldn’t stop your toilet problem in time to prevent water damage, don’t fret. Contact Zona Restoration so we can evaluate the problem and provide a free estimate for any necessary fixes!