Worried about toilet overflow

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Old 02-16-12, 01:13 PM
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Worried about toilet overflow

A few months ago, the toilet overflowed, slowly and quietly while we were sleeping. We live in a small, one-story, one bathroom home, on a slab. Water was ankle deep, everywhere.

The sewer was draining slow, because of tree roots, and the flapper valve stuck open.

We have removed the carpets, replacing them with laminate floor, which we could not really afford.

Now, I'm scared to death that the toilet might overflow again, destroying the new laminate floors.

I'm wondering if there's any way to prevent such a disaster. Water alarm? (Not much good if I'm not at home, but better than nothing.) Some kind of anti-overflow device for toilets? No-fail flapper valves?

Suggestions?

Blippo
 
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Old 02-16-12, 02:00 PM
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The make fill valves that will help it defeat a leaky flapper...but it sounds more like the sewer backed up from the street. Was it a rainy time?

Unless you had a complete sewer blockage theres no way a leaky flapper will flood a room.
 
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Old 02-16-12, 02:07 PM
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The flapper wasn't leaking. It was stuck open. The sewer had been draining rather slowly the day before. It was on my things-to-do list for the next day. It must have clogged completely.

What's a fill valve?

I have a newer toilet, so it's not really a flapper valve, exactly. Some such valves are more reliable than others. I wonder if there's such a thing as an ultra-super-reliable valve.

Blippo
 
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Old 02-16-12, 03:22 PM
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It's me, the OP, replying to myself.

I found a product called "Toilet overflow alarm and control valve." A number of websites seem to sell the same product. It's about $129. It uses a battery operated sensor, sounds a loud alarm, and shuts off the water supply. Any comments?

Here's one source: Toilet Overflow Alarm and Control Valve (Incontinence)

Blippo
 
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Old 02-16-12, 03:39 PM
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$130 dollars to make a noise....to tell you water is running over? Why not address the problem instead?

Fill valves are what lets the water fill the tank. They make some that will only fill the tank once...if it drains down slowly the fill valve will not open until the handle is pushed.

If it's a newer toilet..then the flapper attachment or innards of the toilet need to be adjusted to prevent it happening.

The main issue is your sewer lines...why are they draining slowly? You need someone to come clean them out.
 
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Old 02-16-12, 06:16 PM
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These are not helpful comments. I cleaned the sewer immediately, obviously. Sewers occasionally plug up with roots. Normally, you clean them out when you notice they are draining slowly. Sometimes they surprise you.

The product I mentioned does not just make a noise. It also shuts off the water supply when it senses the toilet is overflowing.

Some fill valves are more reliable than others, and modern ones are better, but few fill valves, if any, are entirely reliable. I asked for advice, but I'm getting into a pointless argument. Meanwhile, only the moderator is showing any interest.

Blippo
 
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Old 02-16-12, 06:44 PM
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Well...sorry you feel that way. All I was saying is that there is no way a constantly running toilet fill valve will overflow a toilet and flood a room or home unless there is a complete sewer blockage. If that has been addressed then adjustment and/or replacement of the faulty toilet parts should solve the problem. No part is completely infallible.

Many plumbing items can fail and cause issues. Toilet supply lines, clothes washer valves, sink lines, etc. You can spend hundreds of dollars (maybe more) to install devices that may or may not stop the flow of water on all these items in case of a failure.

The reason I responded was because I spend more time here than others who have jobs and families.

I'll let others weigh in......
 
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Old 02-16-12, 06:54 PM
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Well... I get your point. It was an unfortunate coincidence that the fill valve got stuck open at the same time that the sewer was unexpectedly clogged. That's a pretty rare event. Modern fill valves don't get stuck that often, and my sewer runs freely 364 1/2 days per year. What are the chances it will happen again?

Still, I worry.

Blippo
 
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Old 02-23-12, 09:03 AM
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I like that "Korky" valve, it's about $10. Sounds cheap? Pull the lid off a Toto toilet and look at the valve...........

You can purchase a rebuild kit for your toilet for about $20. Comes with fill valve, flapper assembly, bolts, washers, flush handle..........your toilet will perform like a brand new toilet.

Just make sure when you install the new flapper assembly that the overflow tube is lower than the hole where you mount flush handle.

Take that $129 and invest in a plumbing outfit that runs a camera down your drains. Find out what the problem is and deal with it. Your new flooring will thank you!
 
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Old 03-15-12, 05:40 AM
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Cool new toilet systems

I don't know about the states but in the uk we have toilets that have an internal
overflow which is really useful as it doesn't cost so much to fit with less pipe work and the worst that can happen is get a slightly larger water bill opposed to a flooded property.

You guys must have the same stuff over there ..surely it all comes from china ?

peace
 
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Old 04-11-12, 04:16 PM
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Until you fix the main sewer line, it is easy to find an alarm system to warn you if your water level begins to rise, but even simpler than that is shutting off the water when the bathroom is not in use. The water will be unable to overflow, and you can simply switch it back on throughout the day. It is a slight inconvenience, but it will save you from another overflow disaster.
 
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Old 04-12-12, 07:39 PM
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If your sewer line was cleaned with the old method of claws it will clog up again sooner rather then later. If you have the claws you need to do it many times. I agree with the camera option and running a professional hydrojet line to clean the sewer at right angles. I think the plumber said this item cost him $400 but he also had a high pressure hose mounted to his truck to use. It will take all the blockages out and he can show you the clean and empty sewer line with the camera.

I used to run my hose on a water jet item ($15) that blasted water longitudinally through the sewer. It kept a quarter size hole in the line but therw was root blockage everywhere else. You can do this and turn off the water at the toilet and you can probably by many years before you have to really clean tyour sewer lateral. If you have a cleanout on you sewer between the toilet and the street sewer loosen the nut on the cap. The cap will pop off before flooding and your know to clean you sewer lateral. Better to clean the mess outside than inside.
 
 

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