fill valve issues


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Old 05-16-09, 08:14 PM
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fill valve issues

I have replaced the fill valve in a toilet twice now and it is still giving me problems? The replacements seem to run fine for about a week and then fail. The first replacement was a generic replacement type unit, so I thought maybe I needed to get a have a replacement that is specifically rated for my toilet. While it's not a direct replacement from the manufacturer (Toto) it is one that is supposed to work in Toto toilets. I can't imagine both replacements are defective, so I must be doing something wrong. I've set the replacement heights to the same as the original Any ideas?

The toilet flushes, tank fills and the water shuts off at the fill line - except for a small trickle. However, this small trickle has doubled our water usage the past month so we resort to shutting the water off everytime we use the toilet.
 
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Old 05-16-09, 09:38 PM
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The best replacement ballcock for most toilets for me is Fluidmaster brand. Also, where is the trickle from? depending on exactly what is happening, it could be a flapper leaking, dirt in the ballcock, water level too high or the toilet itself is defective. I have seen that before. More info would help
 
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Old 05-17-09, 06:10 AM
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Thanks for your reply.

I have a Korky, are they reputable, or do you think I should try a Fluidmaster? (Not sure how to post images just yet, mine is the Korky Quiet Fill Valve 528)

I've looked at the flapper and it appears to be seating well.

When I flush, the tank fills up to the fill line and there is a significant reduction in water flowing to the tank; however, I can still hear water flowing and it is coming from the fill valve. I can't see it directly, but it appears to be coming from the back of the fill valve, almost like the valve is not completely sealing when the water reaches the fill level. It's a very slow fill. There is probably a quarter inch from the fill line to the top of the overflow tube and it takes about 6-7 minutes for the water level to rise enough to go over.

I'm fine with replacing the fill valve again, especially since when i replace it, the problem stops for a few days, but 2 valves in two weeks seems like maybe there is something else wrong.

I have two other toilets in the house that are exactly the same type. All are approximately 3 years old. The other two are fine, but they are used maybe 1/12 as often.

Again, thanks for you response and help.

John
 
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Old 05-17-09, 07:44 AM
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Well Korky makes a good flapper but I have no idea about the fill valves.Try a Fluidmaster as it has the best reputation,is the best selling and the easiest to maintain.

Your problem is not the flapper so you are likely ok there.

Have you had any work done to your plumbing recently besides this?Has there been any work done to the water pipes in your neighborhood etc recently?

My maybe theory here is because this ballcock is used far more that it's sucking in grit etc that is in the water system or in your house's plumbing possibly caused by work done.That build up is stopping the unit from completely shutting off flow or it's causing pass by of water.

Have any of your faucets had any issues with flow especially out of the spout?Are you on a well or other nontradtitional water system?
 
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Old 05-17-09, 07:56 AM
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Okay, I will give Fluidmaster a shot.

We have not had any plumbing work done at our house other than winterizing the irrigation system - nothing to the house pipes. We live in a new neighborhood with a lot of construction still going on, but that has been the case since we have lived here and this problem is recent - within the last couple months.

We'll give the fill valve another go.

Thanks.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 07:58 AM
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What you should check, if the valve is new, would be if you can take the flush valve apart and flush out the supply line. It is possible that the washer in the supply valve below the toilet tank is junk and breaking up as you use it forcing small rubber pieces into the seat of the flush valve in the toilet. If you cannot take it apart to do this step, replace it with a fluidmaster. I know they come apart.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 08:09 AM
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Originally Posted by plumbingods View Post
What you should check, if the valve is new, would be if you can take the flush valve apart and flush out the supply line. It is possible that the washer in the supply valve below the toilet tank is junk and breaking up as you use it forcing small rubber pieces into the seat of the flush valve in the toilet. If you cannot take it apart to do this step, replace it with a fluidmaster. I know they come apart.
I'm new at this, so sometimes I get confused on the terminology. Let me make sure I understand. I have a flexible "pipe" coming from the wall to the bottom of the tank. I'm assuming that is the supply line you are referring to? Is there a washer in there that you think might be corroded and breaking apart and getting caught in the fill valve causing it to stick open slightly?
 
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Old 05-17-09, 08:20 AM
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Originally Posted by staneisen View Post
I'm new at this, so sometimes I get confused on the terminology. Let me make sure I understand. I have a flexible "pipe" coming from the wall to the bottom of the tank. I'm assuming that is the supply line you are referring to? Is there a washer in there that you think might be corroded and breaking apart and getting caught in the fill valve causing it to stick open slightly?
Coming out of the wall or floor is the water supply feed line. It is common for it to go through a shut off type valve at this point, then travels up to the toilet tank and through the flush valve in the tank. Whenever you work on the toilet, you would normally close this valve while working on the toilet. This valve is where the washer will break up over time and send pieces up into the flush valve causing it not to close completely when in operation. As stated from other posters, this dirt/foreign material can also come from other sources. Flushing out the flush valve in the tank will ALMOST always solve this problem in a new flush valve. If there is no valve immediately below the toilet tank, you must have shut some valve off someplace the replace the flush valve.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 08:34 AM
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Originally Posted by plumbingods View Post
Coming out of the wall or floor is the water supply feed line. It is common for it to go through a shut off type valve at this point, then travels up to the toilet tank and through the flush valve in the tank. Whenever you work on the toilet, you would normally close this valve while working on the toilet. This valve is where the washer will break up over time and send pieces up into the flush valve causing it not to close completely when in operation. As stated from other posters, this dirt/foreign material can also come from other sources. Flushing out the flush valve in the tank will ALMOST always solve this problem in a new flush valve. If there is no valve immediately below the toilet tank, you must have shut some valve off someplace the replace the flush valve.
Got it. Yeh, there's a shut-off valve right before the flexible line and that's what I shut off before replacing the fill valve (and what we are using now to stop the water from continuously running).

Okay, I'll look at/replace that washer and see if I can find any dirt in the fill valve that is causing it to stay open.

Thanks,

John
 
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Old 05-17-09, 09:18 AM
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You say the toilets are all 3 years old.Is that the age of your home?Is all the plumbing 3 years old or just the toilets.

If everything is 3 years old,even as cheaply made as supply valves are,they should last longer than that.

I agree to flush out everything,supply lines and fill valves,but would suspect dirt etc far more than bad washers if it's 3 years old.That said anything is possible.

If you are in a neighborhood of active construction that also suggests dirt.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 09:30 AM
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The home was built August of 2006 - everything is less than 3 years old.

I just disassembled the Korky fill valve. I didn't notice any dirt specifically, but I suspect it probably doesn't take much to create a slow leak. I "cleaned" the parts individually and put it back together. The black lever that rises and presses against the opening when the water reaches the fill line just isn't sealing completly, but I can't really see why. I drained the tank and disconnected the supply line. The washer inside doesn't look bad, but I'm off to Home Depot to replace it and get a Fluidmaster.

I realize this is a small project for you guys - but it's pissing me off - and I really appreciate the responses. I'll let you know how it goes.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 10:05 AM
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Just out of curiosity, do you know what the water pressure is in the house? If it seems high, get a test gauge from HD for about 10 bucks. It will have hose threads to hook to any hose connection in the house. e.g. outside hose, washing machine, water heater, laundry sink, or special aerator adapter for any sink.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 10:18 AM
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The washer in question is inside the supply valve not in the supply tube and you won't find a replacement for a washer in a supply valve that new as they are not repairable really and the washer is just stuck on.As for the supply tube itself,you won't find a replacement washer for that either and the best idea is replace it with a stainless steel flex line if that isn't what it now has.Very easy job.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 11:18 AM
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You are correct, no replacement. I did buy another flexible stainless steel line while I was there, but the existing one looks just as good. I found a Fluidmaster fill valve replacement kit and will install that now.

I left right after I posted last, so I didn't see the post about the pressure tester. Do you think the house pressure is too high and is damaging the valves? Is there a way to decrease pressure by not opening the shut-off valve as much, or does it not work that way?
 
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Old 05-17-09, 11:37 AM
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If it was a pressure issue wouldn't it be happening on all the toilets?Maybe use would aggravate it but to me this sounds like something else...

I could be wrong believe it or not.

An experiment might be to regulate it with the supply valve but it would take awhile to know if it worked.I'd still put in the Fluidmaster since it's unclear if the Korky unit will work right.

Another thing is with a Fluidmaster there is a gasket under the black cap on top of the unit.This is the only replaceable part.Once in awhile it might be an idea to take a look at it even take it out and see if any grit etc is on it or in the area of it.Be sure to turn off the water unless you want to wash the ceiling.
 
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Old 05-17-09, 11:51 AM
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Originally Posted by spdavid View Post
If it was a pressure issue wouldn't it be happening on all the toilets?Maybe use would aggravate it but to me this sounds like something else...
surely that's a question directed at plumingods, since clearly i have no clue.

k, i need to tend to the lawn since we have a break in rain and it's high - always something. but, i will get to the toilet tonight and let you know how it goes.

i suspect it will work fine tonight, as it usually does for a couple days, and then we'll see.

good reminder - i have no plans for cleaning the ceiling today...
 
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Old 06-15-09, 09:02 AM
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Update

so, i wanted to give it a little time to test and see how things went after replacing the flush valve again.

about 3-4 weeks ago i replaced the korky unit with a fluidmaster flush valve. i think that did the trick. this isn't a slam on korky, as i still don't know exactly what happened, but the fluidmaster is working great.

it's a little loud though. a couple days after the install i found that fluidmaster also has a quiet flush version, which i probably should have gone with, but as long as it isn't leaking, i'm happy.

plumbingods and spdavid... that's for your help. really appreciate the input.

Beer 4U2
 
 

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