If your residential or commercial toilet bowl water levels run low, you may experience weak flushes and partial clogs. The internal trap controls the water level in toilets, and it commonly can't raise above the upper curve height of the trap. Low water levels result from several causes, but you should be able to fix it by following these tips.
Check for Clogs in the Colon
Test the 'colon' or internal piping in the system for a blockage by pouring a five-gallon bucket of water into the bowl. If the water backs up, the colon probably has a clog, which could be a thick object, such as a small toy or feminine products.
Shut off water to the toilet from the valve located at the back or beside the toilet, or turn off the main water supply. Put on rubber gloves, and pull the obstructions from the colon.
If there are no obvious objects clogging the colon, use a snake to unclog it. Feed the end of the snake into the opening, keep cranking it until you hit an object, then pull the snake out to remove the blockage.
Clear Plumbing Vents
A gurgling toilet when you operate the tub or flush another toilet commonly indicates a clogged vent. The vacuum pressure in the clogged pipe causes water to drain.
The sewer vents run through the wall to the roof, so you need a ladder to access them. Wear rubber-sole shoes when working on roofs. Set a ladder on firm ground and use a ladder stabilizer, or get someone to hold the ladder for you.
Spray inside of the vents, or hire a professional to clean the vents. Consider covering the vents with a grill to reduce debris in them.
Adjust the Float and Check for Cracks
Turn off the toilet water supply, and flush the toilet. Set the toilet tank lid on a soft surface, and look inside the toilet tank for the float ball.
Ensure the float is securely connected to the fill valve and not damaged. Shake the float, and replace it if you hear water inside of it.
Adjust the screw on the arm of the ball float by rotating it clockwise in small increments with a screwdriver, restore water, and flush the toilet between adjustments. Water levels should rise to the fill line or about one to two inches below the fill tube in the center. On cylinder floats, adjust water levels by pressing the adjustment clips or turning the dial.
Cracks in the toilet bowl could also be the culprit, which is usually indicated by water around the base causing water to seep out of the pipe. You will need to replace the toilet in this case. A plumber like those at Ben Franklin Plumbing Services can assist you.
24 April 2018
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