Toilets go through a lot. It’s no surprise that eventually our toilets need to be replaced. In fact, most professionals recommend swapping out your toilet once every 10 to 15 years. It may last longer if properly maintained, but generally, you’ll need a new one eventually.
The question then stands, how do we know when it’s time for a new toilet? The answer isn’t so simple. Apart from the age of bathroom fixtures, there are other variables at work.
At Backup Plumbing, we work with homeowners across La Grange. We have years of experience diagnosing toilets. Here, we’ll talk a bit about the signs of wear and tear on bathroom fixtures and when it’s time to upgrade.
Puddles on the Floor
Puddles around the toilet can mean a few things. It could be that the seal at the base of the toilet needs replacing. It could also mean there’s a crack somewhere in the porcelain. If the latter, it’s a small problem that will get much bigger.
Cracks are repairable sometimes, but if they are too far gone, it’s best to swap out the old one for a new toilet.
If you’re using your plunger on a regular basis, there’s something wrong. Either you’re putting way too much toilet tissue down the drain, or your toilet just isn’t flushing like it used to. A weak flush can be a sign of water pressure troubles, it can also be a sign of a malfunctioning toilet.
Over time the mechanical components weaken. Toilets take longer to flush, leaving things behind to block the drain. Sure, we can call a professional to clear the blockage, but if it’s becoming an ongoing issue, you’ll save time and money getting a new toilet.
It’s Always Running
If that annoying sound of running water in the toilet tank is ongoing, it could be time for an upgrade. Toilets run to refill the tank for the next flush. When the tank is full, the toilet should automatically reset, and the tank stops filling until the next flush.
Over time, flushing takes longer, and so does the tank refill. We’ve all been there, jiggling the toilet handle to get the water to stop. In worst-case scenarios, remove the lid of the tank to flip the overflow tube and flapper back into place. Either way, this is an annoyance you shouldn’t be dealing with regularly.
It Won’t Flush
This is a bigger problem than the slow flush or the running toilet tank. If you go to flush and nothing happens, it’s either a super simple or super complex fix.
On the simple side, the chain connecting the overflow tube to the handle could be snapped. This requires a cheap chain replacement. No problem. On the heavier end of things, if the chain is fine and everything looks to be in working order, a non-flushing toilet means trouble.
Flushing Multiple Times
Ever flush your toilet, and it flushes itself a second time without your help? No, it’s not haunted, but it could be broken. If a toilet flushes on its own, the flapper may need to be replaced. It’s no longer sealing at the base of the overflow tube, which makes your toilet think you’ve hit the flush handle.
It could also be a crack inside the toilet tank. A small crack near the flapper is a sign of age and wear. There’s not much you can do apart from seal it up or get a new unit. A professional can look and tell you which is the best option for you.
Calcium in the Bowl
Calcium buildup happens in homes with hard water. While the hard water can be fixed, there may be more to the issue than calcium in the water alone. A water softener will treat the water but not fix the toilet.
A good toilet flush requires water flow. Hard water could be building up under the rim because of buildup further down in the toilet. Over time, this buildup closes openings, restricting water flow. It’s tough to reach those areas, even with professional tools. If the problem has been ongoing, it might be too late to save the toilet.
Contact Us for More Toilet Trade Out Info
At Backup Plumbing, we know a thing or two about toilets in La Grange. It’s our job to keep your toilet running smoothly, so you can focus on other things in life. Forget playing DIY plumber for a malfunctioning bathroom fixture. Call us today for an upgrade.