Here’s why your toilet runs constantly

It’s the sound that keeps homeowners up at night. During the day, it’s a minor annoyance. In the still hours of night, however, it might as well be a jackhammer in your home. When your toilet runs constantly, it’s hard not to notice. Many homeowners write this off as a quirk of their plumbing, but, as it turns out, diagnosing issues with the toilet that might be causing it to run is pretty straightforward. In this article, we’ll review the three most common causes of a toilet that runs constantly, and why you should call Wagner for fast plumbing repair here in Albuquerque.

Has your toilet been running constantly? Check:

The toilet flapper

Your toilet’s “flapper” is the watertight seal that opens to allow water into the bowl when you flush. It then closes to stop the flush. When a toilet runs constantly, the most common issue is that this valve is no longer functioning like it should.

A faulty ball float can be a potential reason your toilet constantly runs.

A faulty ball float can be a potential reason your toilet constantly runs.

Lift off the top of the tank and take a look at the flapper. If there’s visible damage (such as a crack), that means it’s not able to form that watertight seal. Or, it might be out of alignment—same outcome.

These are signs that you should call our plumbers here at Wagner right away. We’ll come out with a replacement flapper and repair the toilet, fast.

The chain

A broken chain is another common issue that can cause a toilet to run. When you press the handle to flush the toilet, the lever pulls up on the chain, which is connected to the flapper. This pulls the flapper up and allows water to exit the tank into the bowl, flushing the toilet. In other words, no chain, no flush.

Often, the chain can become disconnected at the flapper end: the plastic loophole that the chain runs through in the flapper is prone to splitting after years of use.

However, chain issues can also prevent the flapper from closing all the way, leading to a constantly running toilet. If the chain is too long, it can continually get caught underneath the flapper, prohibiting a watertight seal from forming.

If you’re not quite sure what has caused your toilet to run, it could be the chain. Call our plumbers here at Wagner for fast, local service.

The float ball

After you flush and the water exits the tank into the bowl, water begins to slowly refill in the tank. But, just how does it know when to stop? This is the purpose of the float ball and the “arm” it’s connected to. As the water in the tank rises, so does the float ball.

At a certain point, the ball is high enough to trigger the arm to cut off the water intake, keeping the tank at a consistent amount of water needed for the next flush. In fact, adjusting the float arm and ball is an effective way to either cut your water usage or increase the amount of water used with a flush. Talk to one of our plumbers about your options.

Problems with either ball and float do arise. As a precaution against a flooded home, the toilet has a critical safety mechanism to fall back on: when the water gets too high in the tank, it reaches an overflow tube that carries the spillage into the bowl.

This, as you might expect, causes the sound of a toilet running constantly. Typically, stopping this involves replacing either the float ball or arm so that the water level is better regulated. To have a professional inspect your home’s toilet for any issues, call us today.

Call Wagner for all your plumbing needs

When you stop to consider everything that can go wrong in a home—from a clogged sewer line to a leaking pipe under your foundation—a constantly running toilet might seem like just a minor inconvenience. However, the team at Wagner is here to help with all of it. We’re Albuquerque’s locally trusted, long-standing plumbing team. No matter what your home needs, we can help: we also offer outstanding HVAC and electrical services. Call us today to get started!