How To Stop a Running Toilet

Hearing your toilet flush when no one has been in the bathroom in a long time might be disturbing. Rather than supposing a mysterious pooper is to blame, it may be time to learn how to stop a running toilet.
Fortunately, there are alternatives to hiring a plumber to fix a leaky toilet and save up to 200 gallons of water daily. So let's learn how to do it.
If any toilet parts need to be replaced during this repair, choose suitable parts to prevent causing more problems. In addition, new items are inexpensive and can save you money on water costs in the future.

Causes of a Running Toilet

Let's look at the most common reasons why a toilet keeps running. Here's a rundown of what we'll be looking into:
  • The chain's length
  • A faulty flapper on the flush valve
  • Raise or lower the water level
  • A poor float
  • Toilet’s lift arm is bent
  • The fill valve must be removed

How to Stop a Running Toilet

Get prepared and start collecting your tools. Such tools and materials will come in handy like fill valve replacement, replacement hardware for toilets, rubber gloves, cutting pliers, and a multi-bit screwdriver.

1- Examine the Filling Tube

When your tube is detached, it causes a weak flush or a nearly empty bowl. If the water stream of your toilet flushing doesn’t reach the water tube, you will notice this issue. Here is what you need to do:
  • Join the fill tube and the fill valve.
  • Firmly push both sections together to secure the connection.
  • While the fill tube distributes water into the toilet's overflow tube, keep it approximately an inch above the tip of the overflow tube.
  • Pull the toilet lever and watch the water flow to see if it moves toward the toilet overflow tube.

2- Adjust the Float to Alter the Fill Height

The float is the plastic piece on the fill valve that’s cup-like and indicates the valve when the water level is correct.
If it is adjusted too high, water enters the overflow tube and continues to flow. If it is set too low, the flapper will remain open.
Find the level spot in the tank's inside. Mark this location on the toilet's overflow tube so you can find it immediately. If you can't find it, mark it one inch away from the overflow tube.
To flush the toilet, pull on the toilet handle. Check to see whether the water level increases and then pause at the mark. And if it doesn't, and the toilet keeps flowing, adjust the float using the connecting rod, clip, or screw. If you're dealing with a vintage toilet, bend the metal rod that's attached to it to adjust the float.

3- Change the Flapper Chain/Flush Handle

The most common cause of a running toilet is a worn-out flapper that has to be changed. When flappers get older, they don't seal properly, allowing water to travel from the storage tank into the toilet repeatedly.
While you inspect other tank pieces without draining them, examining the flapper will need emptying it. Turn off the water entering the toilet with the shut-off valve. Typically a few rotations to the right until resistance are felt, then flush.
The tank will leak into the bowl without refilling if there is no water source. Remove any residual water from the tank, and then inspect the flapper. You should replace the flapper if its rubber seal is broken or not seated properly. Simply unclip the old flapper from the flush rod chain and overflow tube to remove it.
You can ask for help at a hardware shop to replace your old flapper, or you can order a one-size-fits-all flapper from any online retailer.
When it comes, repair the replacement device and ensure that it functions properly. Then, reconnect the chain and the sides to the pins to attach the new one. After you've finished installing it, test it.

4- How to Replace a Toilet’s Tilted Lift Arm

This is more suited to toilets with a ball-float system. However, there are times when the lift arm bends, causing the ball to drop lower than it should, possibly half submerged.
You have three options:
  • Using your hands, bend the arm back into position.
  • Replace the bent rod.
  • Replace the float and fill valve with a float cup and an updated fill valve.

5- Everything Should Be Replaced but the Toilet

If the toilet continues running after you've followed these procedures, there's an issue somewhere in the flush system. The simplest solution is to replace the flapper, fill valve, and any associated parts.
This isn’t a tough task. Universal flush repair kits are available at hardware stores for about $15 and are simple to install if you follow the provided instructions.
The only drawback is that you'll need to remove the tank off the toilet to seat the new flapper properly and guarantee a tighter seal between the waterline and the fill valve.
If your toilet keeps running after changing out the flush parts, you'll need to call a plumber. However, in most cases, one or more of the methods listed above will be enough to fix the issues.


While a running toilet may appear to be a small inconvenience, it results in water waste and expensive utility costs. Now that we've gone over how to stop a running toilet, you can easily fix it on your own.
Replacing defective components and chain adjustments are some of the steps you can take on your own.
Fixing a running toilet yourself may save you money and stress thanks to the low-cost materials, easy solutions, and how little time it takes. So break a leg, end the problem of the flowing water, and get it over with.