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Old 08-12-2008, 12:26 PM   #1
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Toilet: water still coming from BOTTOM of Inlet Valve


About three weeks ago, I gave up on my landlord coming to fix a leak behind the toilet and ended up trying to tackle the job myself.
It looked like the leak was coming from the bottom of the tank from around the inlet valve bolt, so I replaced the entire inlet valve/ballcock arm with a new universal anti-syphon one. This did not fix the leak (identical issue). In the process of replacing it, I discovered that the copper tube going from the tank to the shutoff valve had a small split in the top of it, so I replaced the copper tubing with a steel mesh one and also replaced the shutoff valve (so corroded it would not shut the water off completely.) The shut off valve was soldered to the pipe so I cut the pipe off and replaced it with a compression valve.

As I mentioned, everything was working fine for 3 weeks; however, now, the inlet valve will not shut off completely, even with the arm raised all the way up. The valve is the type that has a larger plastic pipe fitted over a smaller pipe that is screwed to the bottom of the tank and then "locks" onto the smaller one. The ballcock is set on a brass arm. The larger pipe can be adjusted up and down to fit the depth of the tank. Even with the arm held as far up as it will go and so that the water coming out of the top stops completely, water is still coming in through the BOTTOM of the valve into the tank.

I've tried turning the water valve down some so it will fill slower, but does not seem to help. I've adjusted the ballcock depth screw to no avail. I've emptied the tank, unlocked the larger pipe and totally removed it, turned the water back on to flush any possible debris, then replaced the pipe and relocked it, in different positions, but still have the same issue. The two sealing rings on the smaller pipe are still in place so I don't understand why the water is still coming through and don't know enough about this type of inlet vavle to know if water coming from the bottom is even normal.

I'm tempted to just replace the inlet valve with another one, but find it hard to believe that a new one would go bad within a matter of weeks. And I'm also concerned that if I replace it, that there's something wrong with the other pieces that I replaced that could be contributing to this (shutoff valve, etc.) and would just happen again, like some Ancient Chinese plumber's secret.

Since this is the first time I've had to repair a toilet this extensively, I thought maybe it was something I'd done wrong or if it was just the valve itself. Any feedback to get this water to stop would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,
DIY Mom

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Old 08-12-2008, 01:43 PM   #2
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Toilet: water still coming from BOTTOM of Inlet Valve


If the water is still coming in at the bottom of the ballcock even when you hold the float up as high as it'll go, then you need to replace the rubber diaphragm inside the ballcock. Because of the way these valves work, even a tiny bit of dirt in the wrong place will make them malfunction and prevent them from opening or closing completely (or at all).

The instructions that came with the ballcock should tell you how to replace the rubber diaphragm.

However, if you take the old ballcock back to the store, and tell them it's not closing properly, they will realize themselves that even a tiny bit of dirt in the wrong place on these things will cause them to malfuntion. so they won't be questioning your honesty.

In fact, if you go back to the store you bought your ballcock at, they should be able to show you how to replace the rubber diaphram on your ballcock if they still have them in stock. Just tell the guy to show you how to do it on a new ballcock so that you can see how to do it on your own.

Most likely, you only need to clean the rubber diaphram in your ballcock, and the area where the rubber diaphram sits, but it's good to have a spare rubber diaphragm for these kinds of ballcocks because that's about the only thing that ever goes wrong with them, and it can always be fixed by replacing the rubber diaphragm if cleaning it doesn't help.

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