Fixes for Your Running Toilet

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Almost every person has to deal with a running toilet once a few years. However, this does not allow for the assumption that some form of negligence is a cause of this. That too, on the part of the plumbing professional who installed that very toilet. Neither does this signify that the toilet installed is of a sub-par quality. It is a phenomenon that occurs at every residential and commercial property between three to five-year intervals. Some people have to face this issue more than others without discrimination.

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Once faced with this challenge, ignorance of the issue would not be the way to go. Leaving the toilet with running water could result in water bills ranging from hundreds of pounds to thousands. Moreover, a toilet where water keeps running creates a poor impression, especially if you plan to let out or sell your property. A lousy impression might further result in either low rent or price offers or even discourage some potential tenants or buyers.

These potential problems should be avoided at all costs, especially when being clear of them requires nothing more than just a DIY fix. Calling a plumber to just stop a toilet from running cannot be considered rational in everyone’s case. This is a task most of us can do ourselves without needing to call a third person. You just have to adhere to the following steps.

How to Diagnose Why Your Toilet Keeps Running

In order to understand the cause for your ailment, that is, the toilet of yours that won’t stop running, you will first have to close the water inlet to your toilet, stopping any more water from flowing into your toilet tank. Once that is done, unscrew anything holding the lid of your tank to the rest of its body. Follow this step by inspecting each and every component within your toilet tank to see for any probable causes of the issue at hand. Once understood, try to resolve any problems following the steps mentioned in the next section.

Fixing a Toilet That Won’t Stop Running

After you have identified the issue that is causing your toilet to keep running, you can now take steps to bring it in the right direction. These steps would vary depending on the component causing the issue in the first place. The most commonly used components and their probable faults have been listed below and fixes have been mentioned. This section will act as a quick guide on how to bring your toilet back to its as good as new condition.

Flapper Chain

This is a chain attached to the flapper from one side and to the flush lever from the other. It is used to lift the flapper from the flush valve so that water from the tank moves to the bowl. The flapper chain can break over time due to rust or can also get caught in something within the tank. Free the chain if it is caught in something, or if it is broken, then replace it altogether.


The flapper regulates the flow of water from the tank to the toilet bowl. Sometimes, what tends to happen is that this does not sit properly on the flush valve, allowing water to flow from the tank to the bowl freely. This can be fixed easily using one’s fingers or a screwdriver. If this shows any form of discolouration, it is a sign that it has become worn out and needs replacement.


A float is used as a gauge which stops the flow of water into the tank once the desired level of water has been accumulated. This comes in two forms: a ball float in older models of toilets and a float cup. In the case that a ball float is not reaching the desired level, causing more water to flow than desired, the excess water is discarded through the overflow pipe. This can cause water running noises to be heard from the toilet for extended periods of time. This can be fixed by bending the arm on which the ball float sits, until it reaches your desired water level.

For a float cup, pinch the clip that sits beneath the cup and slide it up or down, depending on the desired level of water that you are trying to reach.

How to Avoid Future Instances of a Toilet Continuously Flushing

Once you have diagnosed the cause, and possibly even resolved the issue, you also have to check to see how long the individual components will thrive while fulfilling their respective purposes. It is possible that what you faced was a one-off issue and likely will not happen again in the near future. There is also the possibility that the various components have aged to a high degree and are showing signs such as discolouration of the flapper, a rusty flapper chain, etc. In such a case, the need for immediate replacement is imminent. Doing so would save you from a similar instance in the near future.

If you have a running toilet and tried to apply all the fixes that we have listed above but failed at realising your goal of a properly functioning toilet, then you are in need of professional plumbing services. In that case, FF Plumbing would be your best bet! We have the best plumbing services in South Shields. Get in touch with us, and we will resolve all your toilet woes at the best possible prices.


You will first diagnose the issue by opening the toilet lid and having a look inside. You have to see whether each and all components of the toilet are working correctly. If any of them is not functioning as desired, then you can fix that very component. If multiple components are showing signs of problematic working or are completely worn out, then you will have to replace them entirely.

Doing so would increase water bills, leave a bad impression of the property as a whole, and might even become a cause of nuisance for the homeowner.

There are a number of factors that can cause this, which are listed below:

  • Bad placement of the flapper
  • Wear of the flapper chain
  • A malfunctioning toilet fill valve
  • Adjustment required for the toilet float
  • A worn-out flush valve