Diy Toilet Repairs

DIY Toilet Repairs or call a Plumber?

DIY toilet repairs may relate to the fixture itself, to pipework, or to the cistern (if there is one). Usually DIY toilet repairs are needed because of ordinary wear and tear, but they can also be required because a pipe bursts. So let's see what DIY toilet repairs might involve.

First let's talk about the fixture, which is the toilet bowl or pan, and the seat. Sometimes bowls crack, usually because somebody drops something hard against or into them. If this happens, there is a good chance that you?ll have to replace the fixture. Seats usually work themselves loose at the hinges if overweight people use the toilet or loo a lot. The seat can also be damaged if the lid is slammed down frequently. Fortunately seats are not normally expensive and they are reasonably easy to replace.

Pipework brings water to the unit or cistern and also removes waste. The most common problems relate to blockages. Pipes are not normally difficult to unblock although unblocking waste pipes is a particularly unpleasant job.

Modern cisterns are designed to deliver a specific quantity of water to flush the pan of wash-down toilets. The water is stored in the cistern and then discharged when we pull a handle or lever, or push a button, depending on the design of the unit. The system only works when the cistern is full, making sure that just the right amount of water is delivered. Flushing causes a lifting plate and diaphragm inside to rise, drawing water up and then down again into the flush pipe. Then a siphoning action takes over, bending the diaphragm upwards, and drawing the rest of the water from the cistern into the flush pipe. When the cistern empties, the diaphragm falls and the ball valve that controls the water inlet allows fresh water to refill the cistern.

There are various reasons for flushing problems. It could be that the lever mechanism is broken. Usually the weakest link is the S or C-hook that connects the lever arm or push button to the diaphragm lifting plate rod on the top of the siphon unit. You can buy a new hook or even use a piece of wire until you get the opportunity to buy the hook.

Siphon faults also cause flushing problems. The most common is when the diaphragm perishes or is torn. Occasionally siphon housings crack. In both cases your first step will be to turn off the water supply to the cistern. Flush to empty it - because the water is off it won't refill. Then unscrew and remove the siphon unit. If yours is a close-coupled loo, you'll need to disconnect the cistern and unscrew it from the wall. If it's a siphonic unit, check the seal around the pipe that creates the vacuum between the pan traps. If this has perished, or if it has come out of position, then the loo won't be flushing properly either. Check the siphon unit body carefully to make sure it isn't cracked before you reassemble the unit.

If you find you can't do-it-yourself than call in a plumber. But do first try your hand at DIY toilet repairs.

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