Fix a Delayed Toilet Flush
LESLIE: Linda in Clearwater, Florida, you are up. What can we do for you?
LINDA: Yes, hi. Well, I’m curious about when I flush my commode. Sometimes it takes 30 seconds, maybe even 45 seconds, for it to actually do the flushing part. You may push down on the handle, walk out of the bathroom and then all of a sudden hear it, you know, flushing. (chuckles) And …
TOM: Huh. And if you’re watching the bowl, does it still like – is it like, you know, a watched pot never boils?
LINDA: I have to – I have to hold down on the handle. I count to two-and-a-half and then I’ll walk out of the bathroom and …
LESLIE: It waits – it’s motion sensored. It waits for you to leave.
TOM: How old is your toilet? Do you know?
LINDA: I don’t know. We just bought the house a year ago and the house is about 22 years old.
TOM: You know what? It’s probably the original toilet. If you open up the lid and flip it upside down you’ll find a date stamp on a toilet. Sometimes it’s preceded by a letter. But I’m suspecting it’s just an older toilet with a standard flush and fill valve. I would just replace the flush and fill valves, Linda. They’re very inexpensive. I’d go out and get a set of Fluidmaster replacement valves. Probably cost you about 15 bucks. Pretty easy to install yourself.
LESLIE: Well, even – you know, you mentioned Fluidmaster. Their website – which I believe is just Fluidmaster.com – has detailed instructions. And even if you scroll over there’s like …
TOM: Yeah, it’s pretty easy.
LESLIE: There’s like an architectural detail of a toilet tank. And if you scroll over the areas it’ll be like, “This is what’s wrong and this is how you fix it.” So, if you want to do it yourself, it’s super empowering because it’s a simple plumbing project and it really makes you feel very good about it.
LINDA: That sounds like a great idea.
TOM: As long as you can turn the water valve off, you’re in good shape.
LESLIE: Hey, home improvement enthusiasts. Now you can call in your home repair or your home improvement question 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Just call that magic number, 1-888-MONEY-PIT.