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How to Fix a Running Toilet

There are some simple plumbing problems that every homeowner should learn how to fix, and a running toilet is one of them. If your toilet keeps running, meaning it’s constantly draining, follow these troubleshooting steps to find the cause and repair it.

Start With the Flapper

The most common cause of a running toilet is an ineffective flapper, which will fail to seal the water inside the tank. If you’ve ever looked inside your toilet tank, you’ll recognize the flapper as the rubber stopper with an attached chain. To replace the flapper simply buy an identical one at the store and follow the installation instructions. 

The most important part of the process is to remove or add chain links as needed to get the right length. If it’s too long, the toilet won’t respond correctly when you try to flush. If it’s too short, the flapper won’t be able to rise fully, leading to short flushes.

Check the Fill Tube

If pressing down on the flapper to check its seal didn’t stop the running water, the fill tube is your next likely source of the problem. The fill tube runs from the fill valve to the overflow pipe, which drains excessive water from the tank and prevents the water level from rising too high. If the tube is underwater, cut it back so it sits above the water level.

Look at the Float

If the above solutions don’t work, take a look at the float, which will appear as either a cup shape or a ball. If the float is set too high, it will allow the water level to constantly rise too high and drain down the overflow pipe, wasting water needlessly. To fix this with a ball float, simply bend the metal arm down. On a cup float, there should be a mechanism for you to pinch that lets you slide the float down on the central tube as needed.

Replace the Fill Valve

You’ll need to replace the fill valve if the toilet is still running. Drain the tank and unscrew the water supply line, then unscrew the fill valve and replace it with an identical one.

If none of these solutions work or you aren’t comfortable fixing it yourself, contact the bathroom plumbing experts at Parker & Sons Plumbing for toilet repair. Start a service request today or contact us for more information.

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Find out what makes Parker & Sons stand out.

Professional Services You Can Count On
For professional, local plumbers serving the greater San Antonio area, you can rely on Parker & Sons to provide expert service for any plumbing job.
We'll Be There On-Time, Every Time
With Parker & Sons, you don't have to waste time waiting on irresponsible plumbers to show up. We value your time, so we make sure to arrive when you expect us to.
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When you schedule a plumbing job with us, you will get to enjoy our red carpet level of service. We're so confident you'll be satisfied with our service, we put a guarantee on it.
Fast and Reliable Plumbing Services
We know that time is of the essence with any plumbing job, so we make sure to provide efficient and reliable service.
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We value your safety and peace-of-mind. That's why we are fully licensed and insured so you know that you are protected for every plumbing job.
Honest and Affordable Pricing
We offer up-front pricing so you are never blindsided by unexpected fees and costs. We make sure all of our pricing is fair and affordable.

What Our Customers Say

Fast & Reliable

Very fast response. Reliable and even let us do some of the work to keep costs down. Really worked with us to sort through alternatives to find the best solution. I have used them about 5 years ago and will certainlycall them again if I ever need anything.

Roberta C.

Very Knowledgeable

I recently had several plumbing leaks repaired and couldn’t be happier with the prompt service I received from Parker and Sons. They are very knowledgeable, friendly, reasonably priced, and do quality work. I would definitely recommend them to my family and everyone. I would trust them to repair any leak in the house.

Stacey C.

Amazing Service!!!

Amazing service!!! Called and came the same day within 2 hrs. Our toilet had to be re-fitted and snaked. They did a beautiful job on the re-fitting and got the large piece of plastic out of the toilet. Will definitely be recommending them to friends and family. Great service, great people, hard to find these days!!!

Shakira C.

Excellent Service!

Excellent Service! We had some work done on our kitchen and Parker and Sons were able to come out to our house and help us with our remodel. Great guys and great service. I would recommend them to anyone needing a plumber service.

Brad B.

Great to Work With

Jim and his guys are great to work with. Had Parker & Sons come out to take a look at an AC unit at one of my rental properties. Unit is in the attic. Had to replace a coil on it and did a great job. Will definitely use again.

Jeff C.

Amazing Staff!

I have referred Parker and Sons to all of my customers and I would not think of referring anybody else. They have been great and very punctual. All of the plumbers and office staff have been amazing!

Miguel B.

Reasonable Prices

I was in good hands today with journeyman plumber Mark Rizley. He remained until all was better than before. He replaced a PRV and improved a mediocre repair recently done by another well known local company. The price remained reasonable despite the extra effort needed for the job. Well done Mark! Parker and Sons will be my first call in the future.

Todd D.

Fantastic Company!

This is a fantastic company with outstanding professionalism, quality of work, and customer service. While their prices are extremely competitive, their work doesn’t feel cheap like some of the companies you can hire of off Craigslist or on a FB yard sale page. This is a reputable company with proven work and licensed, skilled technicians.

Ben A.

Fair Prices & Excellent Work

Have used Parker & Sons 3 different times, once for a huge complex plumbing repair and twice for smaller jobs. Fair prices and excellent work/fast response time every time.

Kristy K.