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heldmacm
Toilet Running Issues
heldmacm

Hello,

I have a Kohler toilet that I've used for the past two years without any issues. However, just before bed last night, after it was used, the toilet kept running and wouldn't stop. I couldn't figure out what the issue was, so I turned the water off to the toilet and went to bed.

This morning, after turning the water back on, we noticed that it's now not continually running after use but still does periodically between uses, so there's definitely still a problem. Essentially, the toilet will flush, run as normal for a bit, stop, but at various points before flushing it again, it will begin running (and stop). I've spent quite bit of time trying to determine what the issue could be, and I'm at a loss.

I've attached three pictures of what the tank looks like with the lid off. The first two pictures were taken when the water was shut off, so that's why the water level in the tank is so low, and the third picture is with the water on and filled to its maximum level. Any suggestions you can offer would greatly be appreciated so we can get this working again as it should.

Thank you!

Lynne
Re: Toilet Running Issues
Lynne

You might want to try Terry Love Plumbing forum. terrylove.com/forums

heldmacm
Re: Toilet Running Issues
heldmacm

Thanks - I will check that out.

I believe we've identified the problem, although not necessarily the solution. It appears the handle is getting stuck following a flush before it can fully return to its original position. If we gently force the handle up, the toilet will stop running. When the handle is at the top (where it should be following a flush), the chain connected to the handle arm is not taut as it is when the handle gets stuck on the way up. What I believe is happening is by sticking, the chain is consequently keeping the flapper from fully closing. Any suggestions to this problem?

A. Spruce
Re: Toilet Running Issues
A. Spruce
heldmacm wrote:

I believe we've identified the problem, although not necessarily the solution. It appears the handle is getting stuck following a flush before it can fully return to its original position.

If the handle is sticking then you have to figure out why. Sometimes they can wear out, sometimes it can be hard water mineral build up. Take the chain off the end of the lever and work the handle slowly, feeling for rough spots that would indicate a problem. Changing a handle is extremely cheap and easy, so don't spend too much time messing with it. Basically determine if it's got a sticky spot and whether or not it can be cleaned or lubricated, if all else fails, replace it.

heldmacm
Re: Toilet Running Issues
heldmacm
A. Spruce wrote:

If the handle is sticking then you have to figure out why. Sometimes they can wear out, sometimes it can be hard water mineral build up. Take the chain off the end of the lever and work the handle slowly, feeling for rough spots that would indicate a problem. Changing a handle is extremely cheap and easy, so don't spend too much time messing with it. Basically determine if it's got a sticky spot and whether or not it can be cleaned or lubricated, if all else fails, replace it.

I'll give this a try - thanks!

Jack
Re: Toilet Running Issues
Jack

I believe what you have described is a leaking flapper. It can easily be confirmed by adding food coloring to the tank and let it set. If the water in the bowl turns color then the flapper is leaking water into the bowl and will need to be replaced.

Jack

heldmacm
Re: Toilet Running Issues
heldmacm

It ended up being a loose handle that once I took apart, I was able to put it back into place well enough that it doesn't get stuck most of the time. It'll probably need to be replaced sooner than later, but that should be a pretty easy and inexpensive fix. Thanks again for everyone's help.

Darrel
Re: Toilet Running Issues
Darrel

I'm glad it was just the handle but if the problem returns there are a couple other areas to check. While so far Kohler hasn't noted any defects a few years back American Standard had a problem with the rubber ring of their flush valve having a problem causing it to leak off and kick on, the ring had air bubbles on one side and they advised we have customers just turn this over to the smooth side down and that would fix the problem. Also the float valve looks a lot like a Fluidmaster valve and if you read the paperwork for these it tells you how to adjust the float to prevent it from kicking on from time to time due maladjustment.

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