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How Much water waste is experienced with a running toilet? Can you repair this on your own, if so, how so?

If you have experienced that toilet letting more than usual water into its bowl when flushed, you are experiencing a running toilet problem. Over time, the toilet may start running intermittently or continuously. The problem will lead to water wastage, resulting in hefty water bills.

In addition, the regular running water sound is also frustrating to hear. Thankfully, fixing the problem of a running toilet isn’t very complex. In fact, you can repair it yourself, even with a little experience in DIYing plumbing jobs.

A complete guide to fixing a running toilet on your own

This guide will help you learn how much water wastage a running toilet can cause and the key steps to repair the problem yourself. We are excited to serve you for quality plumbing Tulsa repair or Tulsa water heater repair.

So, here we go:

How much water does a running toilet waste?

A water bill typically includes your water usage graph from the past months. One unit in the bill represents 748 water gallons generally. Doesn’t your water consumption look normal compared to previous water usage? Or are you experiencing a dramatic spike in your water consumption level? It means you are facing a leakage or running toilet problem in your home.

A running toilet, if left unrepaired, will cause serious trouble with time.

A running toilet usually has a different speed to use water, and at the same speed, it can cost you money as well.

  • A slow lean in your toilet can waste about 30 gallons of water daily, keeping you unaware of the problem.
  • On the other hand, a medium leak in the toilet can be a bit noticeable and waste about 250 gallons of water.
  • At the same time, a large leak in the toilet is the worst problem you may face. In such a scenario, the toilets typically operate a constant water flow and use up to 4,000 gallons daily. This running toilet problem can add up to $53 per day to the water bill.

How to repair the running toilet problem at home?

As per EPA, about 27% of the water consumption at your home is in the toilet alone. The statistics are true for an appropriately working toilet. While a running toilet can exceed the daily water usage limit of the toilet and lead to plenty of water wastage. Consequently, you have to pay hefty water bills. To avoid this, you must know how to repair a running toilet at home.

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Tools you need.

Here are the tools that you must have in hand to fix the running toilet problem:

  • Channel locks
  • Screwdriver
  • Hacksaw
  • Fill valve (If it is necessary to replace)
  • A bucket
  • Sponge, cloth, or towel
  • Flapper
  • Flush valve
  • Float
  • Flush valve chain

Steps to follow

Here are the key steps that you should follow to fix the running toilet problem yourself. Still, need exceptional Plumbing Tulsa repairs or water heater repair? Call our great team today!

So, here we go:

Turn the water supply off

The first and most obvious step to start fixing a running toilet is to shut down your toilet’s water supply. Usually, you can do this via a small knob mounted on the wall. Moving it clockwise can let you squeeze off the water supply.

Remove your toilet tank’s lid.

Most toilet tanks contain a ceramic lid, so be careful when removing it. The ceramic lid is fragile. Therefore, you should keep it on a safe surface after removing it. Now look into the toilet tank, where you can see different parts that control your toilet’s water system.

The main components include a fill valve, flush valve, and fill tube.

Check the flapper inside the tank.

Sometimes, the flapper inside the lid is responsible for running toilet problems. A faulty flapper can’t seal appropriately between toilet uses. It will make the water drain from the tank’s bottom gradually. Due to this, the toilet will run continuously in an unsuccessful attempt to fill it back.

Press the finger around your flapper’s edge to see if it is a problem. In case the toilet has stopped running, which means the seal of the water is bad.

Before removing the flapper from the toilet tank, take a picture to document how it connects to your toilet’s bottom. Also, note down your toilet’s model and make. The information is useful when tracking down the replacement parts and replacing your flapper.

Inspect the fill valve and replace it (if necessary)

If the flapper inside the toilet tank is working efficiently, it’s time to check its fill valve. Fill valves can also lose their efficiency over time. Debris, dirt, and mineral scale deposits can make the fill valve open quite randomly.

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Due to this, your toilet will keep running intermittently. Purging your fill valve is a common quick fix to consider here.

  • Reach your toilet tank with the right hand to flush the fill valve.
  • Then lift the float and make it rest on your hand’s top.
  • Hold the fill valve cap firmly with your left hand and rest your thumb across its arm.
  • Press down the fill valve cap while twisting it in an anti-clockwise direction for about 1/8th of the turn. Pulling up will let you release the cup.
  • Keep the cup upside-down and turn on the water supply in full force. High-pressure water flowing through the valve will clear all the dirt and debris from it.

Let the process continue for about 15 seconds before shutting the water supply again. Now you can reattach the fill valve cap by reversing the abovementioned steps. There is a high chance that this fix can solve your running toilet problem.

However, if any level of fill valve cleaning and fiddling hasn’t fixed your problem, then it would be better to replace its fill valve. Replacing the fill valve is typically a more involved running toilet fix than the ones mentioned earlier. So, asking for professional help for this process is completely Ok.

Replacing your fill valve can increase your toilet’s lifespan and efficiency greatly.

We are excited to serve you for quality plumbing Tulsa repair or Tulsa water heater repair.


Overall, fixing a running toilet isn’t as hard as you think. Having a little knowledge, the right tools, and instructions can help you to fix the issue and avoid water wastage in the best possible way.

Fun Fact:

On About Us | Plumbing Tulsa | Acts of Service Plumbing, you’ll find how our owner Rick Hudson overcame his early plumbing challenges. Learn more about our leaders and team.

One of many great companies we’ve had the pleasure of serving is making a difference in the Tulsa and surrounding areas. Visit their website: Paul Davis Corporate – Restoration and Emergency Service Provider.

Please do not hesitate to give us a call as you will see we offer great Plumbing Tulsa repair or Tulsa water heater repair.