Having another issue with your toilet? If so, you’re probably wondering if it’s going to require more than a simple repair this time--or maybe even a new toilet. Because modern toilets contain numerous components, knowing when to repair versus when to replace can get confusing.
So how do you know when it's time to replace your toilet? The main sign that you need to replace your toilet is if it needs too many repairs. If you keep having to repair your toilet, and especially if it is for the same reason each time, we recommend that you replace your toilet entirely. This will save you both time and money in the long-run, and will also grant you a functioning toilet that works at optimal levels. Another sign that you should replace your toilet is if you notice that it frequently clogs.
Below, we’ll explain more about which toilet problems make sense to repair and which problems call for a replacement.
Repair: If your toilet runs incessantly, then there is a problem with one of its components inside of the water tank. Sometimes the chain or wire attached to the flapper will catch on something and prevent the flapper from closing (which then prevents water from filling the tank). Gently wiggling the flush handle or chain can sometimes loosen the chain and solve the problem.
Replace: If this doesn’t work, you may need to replace one of your toilet’s components, typically the flapper. There may also be an issue with the chain attached to the flapper or the float ball. A plumber can easily replace these parts.
When to repair: Toilet clogs are not unusual, but if your toilet is clogging more than three times a month, there’s a bigger problem to examine. If your toilet is relatively new, you may need to switch toilet paper or hire a plumber to clear a blockage from the drain.
When to replace: If you own an older toilet that clogs regularly, it probably has a buildup of mineral deposits that are causing the problem. This buildup coats the inside of your toilet’s pipes and makes it increasingly hard for waste and toilet paper to pass through. If a plumber has cleaned your drains and your toilet still clogs frequently, it’s probably time to replace it.
Repair: Any issue involving the flush handle usually consists of a repair that plumbers can perform easily. If the toilet doesn’t flush, the handle might need to be tightened, or the chain might need to be adjusted or reattached. In some cases, you’ll need to replace a flapper or the handle and its lever.
When to repair: If the crack is less than 1/16 of an inch wide, a plumber can repair the bowl or tank without you running the risk of a major leak in the future. If you spot hairline cracks on the bowl or tank’s exterior, seal them with plumbing epoxy to prevent the cracks from widening.
When to replace: If the crack is wider than 1/16 of an inch, then replacing your toilet is the wisest option. You can attempt to repair the crack, but you run the risk of the repair failing, which would result in toilet water leaking all over your bathroom floor.
When to repair: Under no circumstances should your toilet move when you push or sit on it. If your toilet moves, contact a plumber. The toilet may not have been installed correctly, in which case the plumber may need to tighten its bolts or replace the wax seal around its base. In some cases, a sagging floor is a real culprit.
When to replace: Sometimes the wobbling is caused by a broken flange, the plastic or metal ring that secures the toilet to the floor. Replacing that part can get pricey. In some cases, it makes more sense to replace your toilet, especially if it’s less water-efficient than newer models.
If you need assistance with a toilet repair or replacement, our Tyler plumbers are committed to providing you with 100% satisfaction. Call (903) 290-0851 or contact us online to request a service.