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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, I am hoping you can help me troubleshoot a problem I am having. :)

The initial symptom was water leaking when the toilet was flushed: the water was leaking only when the toilet was actually being flushed, and a small amount of water would dribble from between the water tank and the body of the toilet onto the floor. This led me to believe the gasget needed to be replaced.

That is the symptom currently still, after I have replaced the following with brand new parts:

* A new gasket. (between the water tank and the main body of the toilet)

* A new fill valve (a Fluidmaster 400a, same as was previously installed)

* All new tank nuts, bolts, and rubber washers.

* A new flush valve.

There are no other symptoms present. Water is not leaking inside the toilet. Water is not running in the toilet. I replaced the other parts as they were older, to stave off any future problems from developing.

I have tried two different types of gaskets, but the other type of gasket was too high/tall and did not appear to be the right fit. This one seems like the right fit and my local hardware shop that has been very good with helping me with DIY repairs showed me a third choice, and the third one would have been too thick also. I think I have the right gasket.

I tightened everything down as much as I could ...

What could I have missed?

I took it apart four times and reassembled four times. Cannot find what I am doing wrong.

I do not know the make and model of this toilet, other than it was circa around 1986 when my home was built. There is nothing legible inside the toilet tank, no legible stamp to make out, so we went by the shape of the opening, the old gasket, and by photos of my toilet and the hole where the gasget had been to pick a new gasget. The old gasget was very deteriorated and compressed from its original shape, so it was difficult to picture what it must have originally looked like.

I read somewhere that sometimes gasgets need to be sealed with pressure. I did not seal this one with pressure. I fitted it onto the end of the flush valve, then placed the porcelain tank in position on the body of the toilet.

Thank you in advance for any insight or ideas.
 

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Sometimes those universal seals don't always work so well. It is too bad you can't make out the name and brand of toilet. Well, you will have to take it apart one more time and hopefully it will be your last time. When you do, please post some pics of the seal you are trying to install and tank&bowl so the guys can give you some better advice. Couple of suggestions;

Toilet tank could be cracked - but I doubt it.

The seal between the tank and the base is not that easy to install. Things that can go wrong: the seal wasn't positioned correctly, and/or the bolts were tightened too tight and/or the seal is bad. Wrong seal for tank & bowl. Buy a better seal and follow the installation directions exactly.

Recommend new tank to bowl kit as well. Take all your old parts to ace hardware try to match them up the best you can.

Are you sure you have the seal installed correctly? Sometimes they get installed backwards and they will leak no matter how hard you tightened it. Are you alternating while tightening?

Here's a link you can read while were waiting for the experts to arrive.

link here
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, jmon. I will post a couple of pics. The pics I have are not that great. I snapped them in a hurry and they do not show the new gasget attached. They show the old, mangled gasget which was so distorted it is hard to tell what the original shape was.

There was no front or back to this seal. It was pretty straightforward with the design. One could install it upside down, I suppose, but I do not think I did that.

So maybe the problem was that I purchased a universal gasget. I tried to install the gasget correctly, as I have never done this before. I tried to seat it properly, positioning it directly over the hole.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The two pics are attached. The new gasket I installed is not red. It was by PlumbPak and is part # PP835-53.

I googled it and found photos of it online but they look black. The gasget I got does not look black; it looks more like a light grey.

I fit it around the flush valve, then carefully placed the water tank onto the body of the toilet.

The toilet flushes properly, but, as before, a small amount of water drips out between the water tank and the body of the toilet.

Here is a link if someone wants to see what this looks like, but it is very hard to view from this photograph.

http://www.hassonhomecenter.com/browse.ihtml?pid=868175&step=5&prodstoreid=9829
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Being this is only happening when flushed make certain the problem isn't condensation rather than a leak.
Thank you. How would I differentiate between the two? I do not see any visible condensation on the tank.

The amount of water is at least a cup every flush? which is why I was thinking it is a leak.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Here are two more pix. In the first one, you can see the new toilet parts installed. The new tank bolts/rubber washers, new fill valve, new flush valve.

Note: It may look like there is some legible writing on the interior body of the water tank, but I cannot make anything out.

The second pic is of the entire toilet assembled.
 

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Not much of the old seal left. Do you have a hardware store like ace? Or local plumbing supply store? Take what you got to hardware/plumbing store and try to match it up the best you can. I don't think you'll have much luck with lowes/HD. Maybe.

I agree with you. pretty sure it's coming from tank and bowl seal, However, could it be possibly leaking from the bolts? They have seals to. Did you replace those?
 

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Nice pics wheee - thanks a bunch. Those bolts look new with white seals on them. Just wanted to make sure water wasn't leaking from them.
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Not much of the old seal left. Do you have a hardware store like ace? Or local plumbing supply store? Take what you got to hardware/plumbing store and try to match it up the best you can. I don't think you'll have much luck with lowes/HD. Maybe.

I agree with you. pretty sure it's coming from tank and bowl seal, However, could it be possibly leaking from the bolts? They have seals to. Did you replace those?
Yep; I have a local, non-chain store I deal with, and I took in the old gasget and matched it up already. (Although it was a universal gasget, not specific to my toilet, model unknown.) Unless you mean another store might have a better selection?

I already replaced the bolts. Everything inside the tank is new (except the handle).

No water is leaking from the bolts.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I agree with you. pretty sure it's coming from tank and bowl seal, However, could it be possibly leaking from the bolts?
The reason why I do not think it is not leaking from the bolts is that it is not a constant leak.

The leak only occurs when I flush the toilet.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
you need the thick gasket,
I tried a thicker gasket, but it made the water tank rock backward and forward and sit up really high. It still produced a leak. I still have that gasket. I will attach a photo.

also washers are in the wrong place for the toilet bolts
Hmmm. In case my photo isn't clear (I can't tell) the washers are placed as follows: rubber is next to the porcelain, covering the hole. Then the stainless steel washer is under the bolt, on top of the rubber.

Should the steel be on the bottom instead, then, (the steel next to the hole) and the rubber be on top next to the bolt?

toilet looks like an old gerber??
Thanks. I was just trying to identify the toilet on other websites. Will check Gerber and see if I can find my style of toilet. I have two toilets, identical, and one of them appears to have "Moreland" written in it --though I could not swear to it, as it is very faint; will have to look at it again -- but I cannot find any reference to the style of "Moreland" online.
 

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Discussion Starter #15 (Edited)
Gasket that is not being used

Here is a pic of the toilet gasket that I am not using at the moment. I tried this one, but it did not seem to work and I removed it. It seemed too thick and the water tank rocked forward and backward, even though I tightened it down as much as I could.

The gasket currently on the toilet is thinner than the one in the photo. It seems to fit better than the gasket in the photo, as I was able to firmly tighten the water tank to the toilet body. However, it did not solve the leaking issue.
 

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That's a good idea check gerber and morland as you suggested. If it's not the proper fitting gasket it probably will still leak no matter what you do. Water will always win eventually.

Just a suggestion, if you do happened to identify the toilet bowl maker and can't find anything local at your hardware/plumbing store, you can try ebay.com. They have a lot of old parts that are still available for toilets.

Sometimes the maker is no longer in business or goes out of business and there is no longer any support for your bowl. Before you go out and buy a new one, try ebay. I have found parts on ebay for items no longer supported. For example, just type gasket for gerber toilet tank in their search engine. Or Gasket for moreland toilet tank. See what pops up.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
The problem is solved, and I wanted to thank everyone and post the solution here and some tips for any other first-time DIYers like me who have not tried this type of repair before.

It was, as Javiles alluded to, in need of the thicker gasket. I tried it one more time today, and discovered that my problem had been that I had not adequately tightened down the toilet bolts when installing it the first time. I saw the water tank sitting up very high, as the gasget was brand new and not yet squashed and deteriorated from years of use, so with the new gasget in place there was at least an inch to inch-and-a-half gap between the toilet water tank and body of the toilet. That was why I had thought it did not fit.

I carefully tightened down the toilet bolts, going from one side to the other. As long as the water tank is still moving, my understanding is that the tank bolts are not yet tight enough. I kept tightening until (a) the bolts felt tight and (b) there was no movement of the water tank. By this time, I could see a noticeable difference from yesterday's intstallation, as the tank looked like it was fitted secure on top of the body of the toilet and did not look like it was "riding high."

The toilet turned out to be a Briggs, not a Gerber, though the Gerber representative was helpful in assisting me in identifying my toilet. I had to look on the actual body of the toilet in a hard-to-see area: as I face the toilet body, I
looked underneath where the toilet bolts go, toward the right rear (facing the toilet), underneath the lip, for a number embedded in porcelain. On my toilet there was no number per se, but there was the following imprint: BRIGGS - S

I then called Briggs customer service for further assistance, and they were able to identify my toilet through the photos as Briggs toilet 4930. It needed the gasget B5143 if I were to order the Briggs part, but when I described the gasgets I had on hand and measured them for him, he felt as Javiles did that the thicker universal gasget should do the trick, even though measurements were not exact, but close enough. The other gasget was too thin.

Another tip in identifying this toilet: while working on it, after identifying it, in very faint letters inside the tank along the flat bottom of the tank, I could barely make out the word Briggs and part of the model number, 930 out of 4930.

As for the toilet bolts, listen to the professionals like Javiles and others! For all the DIYers that might find this thread after my problem has been solved, stores like your independent local hardware store or Home Depot will probably tell you to install the toilet bolts aa follows: bolt, with stainless steel washer next to it, and rubber washer next to the porcelain tank. This is incorrect and causes many problems (they will tell you it prevents them). The correct way to install toilet bolts as I have now learned is: inside the tank, bolt, with rubber washer only. Outside the tank you can use or not use the rubber washer next to the porcelain, followed by the stainless steel washer, and then the nut.

I also had some difficulty with the toilet flapper, which is now resolved. The Korky 2001 flapper from the old flush valve, which was only a couple of months old, did not appear to fit my new flush valve, as water was leaking out and running into the bowl. But it just needed a bit of time to seat properly. I took the chain off it, and let it rest against the flush valve. Then I let it create a seal and added a bit of water. When that looked good, I added more water. I have now reattached the chain and it is working fine. What initially threw me was that the shape of the "bulb" on the flapper that came with the new flush valve is different than the Korky flapper I have, but I learned from Korky the bulb is not what prevents the water from leaking; instead, it is the flat part that covers the hole.

My toilet is working fine now. No more leaks! I am letting it sit overnight, tank filled with water and water to the toilet turned off, as one final test, but am not anticipating any problems.

Thank you again for your help. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #18
This is the thicker gasget I ended up using. Tightening down the bolts properly until the tank no longer moved helped! I think I was afraid I was going to crack the porcelain, but I was careful and it went okay.
 

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Wheee, great job. Thanks for sharing your experience with the forum. That's how we all learn. Glad evrything worked out for you.
 
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