How to Fix a Leaky Toilet Tank

Unattended toilet-tank leaks can damage flooring and sub flooring, and in more severe cases even the ceilings and framing below, so avoid procrastination when faced with this problem. If the problem is excessive condensation on the tank, see How to Stop Toilet-Tank Sweating.

Moderately Challenging


Things You'll Need

  • Towel
  • Spud Wrench
  • Adjustable Wrench
  • Socket Wrench Or Channel-type Pliers
  • Replacement Parts
  • Large Standard Screwdriver
  • Large Sponge
  1. For leaks at the fill valve

    • 1

      First, tighten all connections. If the leak persists, determine the leak's source by drying everything with a towel, then looking and feeling for water.

    • 2

      Turn off the water supply to the toilet, flush to drain the tank and sponge out any remaining water.

    • 3

      Use a wrench to disconnect the supply-tube coupling nut and remove the fill valve's mounting nut (see illustration in How to Stop a Toilet From Running).

    • 4

      Lift out the fill valve to clean the gasket and washer. If either is damaged or dried out, replace it.

    • 5

      Reseat the valve, carefully centering it in the hole and holding it vertical as you tighten the mounting nut about a half turn past the point of full contact.

    • 6

      Reinstall the water-supply tube and turn on the water to test it. If necessary, tighten the mounting nut a little more.

    For leaks at the flush valve

    • 7

      Drain the tank and supply-tube coupling as described in step 1, above. Remove the tank's mounting bolts using a large standard screwdriver on the bolt and either a socket wrench or channel type pliers on the nut (see illustration in How to Stop a Toilet From Running). Lift off the tank.

    • 8

      With the tank upside down, pull or twist off the rubber spud washer and use a spud wrench to unscrew the large locking nut from the flush valve.

    • 9

      Lay the tank on its side and remove the flush valve.

    • 10

      Remove the beveled cone washer from the flush valve. Clean it and the spud washer with a soapy sponge (or replace them if they are in poor condition).

    • 11

      Reverse the procedure to reinstall the tank. Make sure the beveled side of the cone washer is facing the tank's inside and the beveled side of the spud washer is facing the bowl.

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