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Old 08-22-2011, 08:50 AM   #1
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


Hi, The ballcock was not shutting the water off completely, and water was filling up slowly, to the overflow tube, and down the overflow tube. I got a new plunger, put it in, and it still does the same thing. If I shut off the supply of water, the water in the tank stays at the same level for 24 hours at least, so I don't think there is a leak anywhere other than at the ballcock. Could there be a crack in the ballcock somewhere that is letting water up and around the normal place where it would be stopped by the plunger valve? The toilet and the ballcock are 25 years old. I have replaced the plunger many times before, and it has fixed the problem, before. When I had the top of the ballcock open, I closed off flow of water out of the fill tube at the top of the ballcock, with my finger, and the water rose up inside the ballcock around the fill tube anyway, and out into the tank. Is this normal? I know I could just replace the whole ballcock with a new one, but I'd rather just fix this one, if possible. Thanks for any advice.

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Old 08-22-2011, 09:04 AM   #2
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


Yes, it is normal for the fill valve to fill the tank from the bottom. The "overflow tube" is actually a bowl primer to ensure that the water level in the toilet bowl doesn't drop too low for .. . . . . . well you know.


If you're having problems with the fill valve, why not replace it? If it's 25 years old, you're probably just due for a new one.

Grab a new toilet supply as well just in case.

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Old 08-22-2011, 09:35 AM   #3
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


Has there been a change in water presure?

Either way....I agree with Alan....25 years old? Your lucky to get that much use out of it. Might be time to consider a new toilet. Especially if your water bill is high.
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:47 AM   #4
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


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Yes, it is normal for the fill valve to fill the tank from the bottom. The "overflow tube" is actually a bowl primer to ensure that the water level in the toilet bowl doesn't drop too low for .. . . . . . well you know.


If you're having problems with the fill valve, why not replace it? If it's 25 years old, you're probably just due for a new one.

Grab a new toilet supply as well just in case.
Alan, Thanks for the answer. I don't want to replace the whole ballcock because the 2 plastic nuts under the tank, one securing the ballcock, the other securing the water supply line, are hard to get off. I have even sprayed Liquid Wrench on them. I have tried using a vice grips to loosen the lower nut, and the vice grips just slips over the nut. It's not even a regular nut, just a round connector with some raised edges. If I squeeze any harder with the vice grips I may crush or crack the nut, and then what? I guess I could saw the thing off with some sort of blade. It has a rigid metal supply tube, by the way, not the flex hose. I want to keep the rigid supply tube, if possible. The upper nut is an actual nut, with six sides, and I can get an adjustable wrench on it, but am afraid it will be frozen also. Haven't actually tried it yet. I can't find an exact replacement for the plunger, which may be the whole problem. The rubber gaskets are never the same size, no matter what store I go to. The package says it is for a 1b1 or 1b1x ballcock, but the rubber gaskets are not the same as mine. I think I have the 1b1 ballcock. Everyone says not to worry about finding an exact replacement for the plunger, just replace the whole ballcock, easy as pie, one, two, three. But the plastic nuts won't come off.
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Old 08-22-2011, 12:17 PM   #5
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


Take a hacksaw blade, add a few laps of duct tape for a handle. Cut it off.
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Old 08-22-2011, 10:29 PM   #6
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


Before cutting, what kind of toilet is it? One piece or two piece?

Is the fill valve made of plastic or is it brass?


I've come across older one piece toilets that sometimes need special fill/flush valves, that cost upwards of 300 dollars, at which point you're better off trashing the stupid thing for a new crapper.



If the fill valve is plastic, the nut should come off quite easily. Is it possible you are turning it the wrong direction. I remember when I first started plumbing I had trouble when i was unscrewing something upside-down remembering which direction I needed to turn it. It probably feels backwards. Take a minute to think about which way you need to turn it.

The other option if the fill valve is plastic, you may be able to snap it off inside the tank by grabbing the fill valve and trying to bend it over inside the tank. A 25 year old piece of plastic (hate to say it) will probably snap off easier than you think (or would like to imagine).

if it's brass, you might be stuck with the hacksaw method, or even a dremel with a cutoff wheel, just enough to saw through the nut, and then the thing should come off.
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Old 08-24-2011, 10:24 PM   #7
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


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Before cutting, what kind of toilet is it? One piece or two piece?

Is the fill valve made of plastic or is it brass?


I've come across older one piece toilets that sometimes need special fill/flush valves, that cost upwards of 300 dollars, at which point you're better off trashing the stupid thing for a new crapper.



If the fill valve is plastic, the nut should come off quite easily. Is it possible you are turning it the wrong direction. I remember when I first started plumbing I had trouble when i was unscrewing something upside-down remembering which direction I needed to turn it. It probably feels backwards. Take a minute to think about which way you need to turn it.

The other option if the fill valve is plastic, you may be able to snap it off inside the tank by grabbing the fill valve and trying to bend it over inside the tank. A 25 year old piece of plastic (hate to say it) will probably snap off easier than you think (or would like to imagine).

if it's brass, you might be stuck with the hacksaw method, or even a dremel with a cutoff wheel, just enough to saw through the nut, and then the thing should come off.
Alan, It's a 2 piece. Plastic fill valve, not brass. Plastic nut on plastic ballcock. Turning it the correct direction. It might come right off if I put a rubber jar lid grabber on it, and then vice grips.
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Old 08-24-2011, 10:32 PM   #8
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


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Alan, It's a 2 piece. Plastic fill valve, not brass. Plastic nut on plastic ballcock. Turning it the correct direction. It might come right off if I put a rubber jar lid grabber on it, and then vice grips.
Well there's really no reason a plastic valve should be locked up that tight.

Just for reference, when you put pliers, and/or channel locks and/or a SMALL pipe wrench on there, you should be moving your arm TO THE LEFT to loosen it.

You may have to hold the valve inside of the tank with your other hand to keep it from spinning.

Worst case, try snapping it off, and if that don't work, you'll have to cut it, but i doubt you need to cut it.

If you can't get it, i'd say call a plumber.

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Old 09-03-2011, 02:48 PM   #9
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New Plunger, but Ballcock is Still Leaking in Toilet


Just an update, to add some info that might be helpful to a reader. I went out and bought a new ballcock, but before installing, I wiped off the top of the old ballcock, just to check further for any cracks, etc. Must have been psychic, or just desperate to avoid installing new ballcock. Wiped off some brown coating on the top of the inlet tube on top of the old ballcock, and was able to feel a small nick in the surface which I hadn't noticed before. Got out my reading glasses and a magnifying glass, and a flashlight, and found a tiny CRACK going up the side of the ballcock, into the nick ! Crack was outside and inside, on the top half inch of the plastic pipe. Cut to chase : I used a little "Plumbing Goop" sealant/adhesive on the crack, inside and out, and let it dry for 2 days, then hooked everything back up and gave it a test. Worked fine, no more leak. Been OK for 3 days now.The Goop filled in the nick pretty well, too. I know I may need to put a new ballcock in eventually. Just wanted to update the thread.

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