Reasons Your Toilet Won't Flush & Ways to Fix It!
Few things are as embarrassing as a toilet not flushing all the way. Even if there are several toilets in the house, it's a situation that needs a quick fix. However, homeowners are often unaware of why a toilet won't flush: it could be clogged, not getting enough water, or some parts need to be replaced. Fortunately, some of these are problems that you can solve yourself!
In this article, we look into why your toilet won't flush and share some quick plumbing fixes you can try yourself—if you're up for it!
How to fix a toilet that won't flush? Read on to find out!
Why is My Toilet Not Flushing?
It's not a question that anyone wants to ask themselves, but in every household, there are times when the toilet won't flush. It is caused by some common problems, most of which you can quickly check yourself.
First, you need to verify that your home's internal plumbing is working. If water is flowing from the taps, it should also flow into the toilet tank. If the water is not flowing, that's half-good news because it means there's a problem with your utility company. So there's nothing you can do about it other than calling your utility company, but at least your toilet is not broken).
If this isn't the case, there are some common culprits you can look for: a broken toilet flush handle, low water levels in the tank, clogged toilet jets, or a blockage. Most (but not all) of these issues are related to your flushing mechanism.
Let's have a look at these problems and how you can fix them:
The Toilet Is Clogged
Many things can cause a clogged toilet: sanitary products, wipes (anything that shouldn't be flushed), and even excess toilet paper. These objects can accumulate and clog up your sewer line.
However, looking for the reasons for clogged toilets doesn't help fix the issue, as you can't usually see what's causing the blockage. The first sign of a clogged toilet is the high water level in the bowl. There may also be a partial blockage, which you can tell if the toilet doesn't flush or flushes but not strongly enough.
How to fix it? Try loosening the blockage with a plunger or a toilet auger. If such tools don't work, pour a bucket of hot water into the bowl. If the blockage is stubborn and nothing seems to work, you may have to call in a professional plumber for clogged toilet issues who has the right tools to deal with the blockage. In the future, you can avoid a clogged toilet by only flushing down waste and toilet paper.
The Toilet Flush Handle or Chain is Faulty
Although many parts of the flushing mechanism can fail, more often than not, it's the toilet flush handle that is faulty. The toilet flush handle is what you press to flush the toilet; it's essentially a lever that attaches to the flushing mechanism inside the tank.
The toilet flush handle is connected to the flapper by a chain. This chain may have become detached from the flushing mechanism. The chain may also be too long so that it doesn't do its job of pulling up the flapper and flushing the toilet. It is also possible that the chain is too short, the flapper does not close properly, and the toilet runs without filling with water.
How to fix it? Lift up the toilet tank and check that the chain is still attached to the mechanism. If it’s not, clip it back in place. Next, flush and check if the chain is too long or too short. The chain has to be the right length to work correctly.
If the chain looks OK, the problem could be the flapper or the toilet flush handle. Try cleaning the handle to remove any accumulated limescale, and tighten the nut on the back of the handle if you feel it has come loose. If it's completely broken, it needs to be replaced. Both the flapper and handle are easy to replace. Just be sure to take the old parts to the hardware store for reference.
The Toilet Tank Isn't Filling Up
The toilet tank must be able to fill up with water, as it needs to release a great amount of water into the toilet bowl to create a suction effect necessary for the flush. Therefore, if the toilet tank doesn't contain enough water, you'll have a toilet not flushing properly or one with a weaker flush.
How to fix it? Check that there is enough water in the tank by lifting the lid. The water level should be slightly below the overflow tube. If it's lower than this, you need to locate the toilet inlet valve and check that it isn't touching the sides of the tank or isn't incorrectly placed. See if you can put it back to its position and flush again. It can also happen that you don't hear the water running: it's a sign that the flushing mechanism is faulty and needs to be replaced.
The Toilet Jets are Clogged
Toilet jets are small holes under the rim of the toilet bowl. When you flush the toilet, water flows through these tiny holes in a swirling movement. Over time, they can become clogged with limescale, not allowing your toilet to flush correctly.
How to fix it? Toilet jets are easy to clean with a toothbrush, a small nail, or wire. You can also use vinegar or bleach to help remove the blockage faster. Check if the holes are still dirty or clogged by placing a small mirror under the rim. Be sure to clean all jets, and test if this fix worked by flushing the toilet.
Toilet Still Won't Flush? Call a Professional Plumber!
While there are a few simple ways to check why your toilet isn't flushing properly, most repair tasks are not hassle-free, and if you're new to plumbing, they can be overwhelming. You can, of course, replace some parts of the flushing mechanism yourself, loosen any blockages if you have the right tools, and clean parts to remove limescale and corrosion, but often the issue is more complicated than that. In most cases, the easiest way to fix a toilet that's not flushing is to have it done by a professional plumber.
Where to find a plumber near me? If you are looking for a reliable company for plumbing services in the Conejo Valley area, look no further than Conejo Valley HA Plumbing and Rooter. We are a family-owned and locally-operated plumbing company, proudly serving the residents of Conejo Valley for nearly 50 years. So if you're having issues with your home's plumbing and need a team that works professionally and provides impeccable service in the shortest amount of time, Conejo Valley HA Plumbing and Rooter is your best match. We serve 24-hour emergency plumbing services all over Southern California.
Need a professional to help with a toilet that won't flush? Contact us today at (805) 499-0448 to book our plumbing and drain cleaning services in the Conejo Valley and surrounding areas.