Help with slow flushing toilet with no swirling motion

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Old 06-12-16, 05:35 PM
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Help with slow flushing toilet with no swirling motion

Hi all. I had a perfectly functioning toilet until this morning when water began to rise then slowly went down, but no swirling motion.

Problem Video: https://youtu.be/1esX2WBGxz8

I did some research and tested a few things before posting this. What I did includes:
-used a plunger (no sign of clog)
-used an auger (no sign of clog)
-checked water tank (appears to be normal)
-performed bucket water test (water went down easily; assuming no clog)
-checked rim holes (didn't appear to be clogged but ran a hanger wire thru each one)
-applied Dawn (washing detergent) on the flush valve (one youtube recommendation)

What I've noticed is that when the toiled is flushed, water drops down the rim holes instantly (along with the hole at the bottom of the bowl; siphon jet I'm assuming it's called); however, stops prematurely before the swirling motion can begin (on a functioning toilet, this is what seems to happen; water comes down the holes and jet for a longer period of time).

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

PS. I also wanted to point out that ghost/phantom flushing occurs on this toilet as well. Just wanted to mention it in case they are related.
 

Last edited by mcmuney; 06-12-16 at 06:46 PM.
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Old 06-12-16, 08:17 PM
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Ghost flushing occurs when the flapper doesn't seal correctly. Water drips out of the tank and into the bowl. When the water level in the tank gets to a certain level the fill valve opens and refills the tank.

With your problem in the video..... when you activate the handle to open the flapper.... the flapper needs to stay open long enough to dump 1/2-3/4's of the water in the tank down into the bowl. Your flapper is only staying open a few seconds.

That may be what's called a bell flapper. It almost looks like a Hydroflush flapper.
Is it original ? Is there a brand name on the toilet ?

That flapper will be replaceable. We can better advise after you answer the two questions unless someone recognizes it before then.

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Old 06-12-16, 08:38 PM
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Hi PJmax,
Logically, that makes sense. In regards to the two questions:

1) I don't think it's original as the unit was renovated (including all bathrooms) before I moved in 3 years ago. I'd estimate the equipment to be no older than 10 years and I haven't changed anything myself.

2) The brand is KOHLER (1.6 gallons).

This resembles what I have inside the tank: http://www.faucetdirect.com/kohler-1...y-kit/p1652544

The flapper itself is very different looking as you can see, and after I read your comments, I attempted to hold the flapper manually up to see if that made a difference, but it didn't. When I flush, the circular black tube (that you captured on the photo) goes up to release the water, which is what I held up manually. However, if there is an inner flapper, which is closing early, that could be the problem?
 
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Old 06-12-16, 08:58 PM
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I'm not the plumbing pro but I do plumbing work.

Your link does look like the correct part. That would mean you'd need to remove the tank from the bowl. That would require new tank bolts and possibly a tank to bowl gasket.

Yes.... it would appear the inner flap is closing too early. In looking at the video it looks like the tank may not be filling enough. There should be a FILL LINE marked on the inside of the tank. See if the water level is where it's supposed to be.
 
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Old 06-12-16, 09:15 PM
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I'm assuming the removal of the tank from the bowl would be required to fix the ghost/phantom flushing and not the actual slow flushing problem, correct?

In looking at the flapper mechanism more closely, there doesn't appear to be an inner flapper. When the black circular tube lifts up, that's when the flushing begins. And when I held it up manually for a longer time, it didn't make any difference. I'm assuming that tube is the flapper, unless I'm wrong and there's another inner mechanism.

The water level is actually very close to where it should be, right at the tip of the circular black tube (it may have been slightly lower on the video). Any more water and it's over-flow into the tube.
 
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Old 06-12-16, 10:45 PM
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Here's some interesting news. The flush corrected itself all on its own after the problem continued nearly for the whole day.

Any thoughts on what caused this?
 
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Old 06-13-16, 04:09 AM
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Possible calcium buildup where the flapper would normally seat. It might have lodged itself loose. You are now getting a tight seal and proper flow. Put some bule food die in the tank and see if it leaks into the bowl. Replace innards (all of them) and be done with the problem. Get original Kohler parts.
 
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Old 06-13-16, 05:32 AM
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I think the problem was caused by a clogged pipe, a severe clog such as a toy dropped into the bowl.
Even though you used an auger, you didn't find the clog.
A clogged line will cause the bowl to siphon. Once the bowl starts siphoning slowly, you will notice that the bowl doesn't fill to the proper level and it might 'ghost flush' occasionally.
It sounds like whatever was blocking the drain might have passed through the pipes.
 
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Old 06-13-16, 07:43 AM
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Listen to the video..... the flapper was only staying open for 2-3 seconds. That's the problem.
I doubt an obstruction could cause the valve to close prematurely.
 
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Old 06-13-16, 07:43 PM
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I think PJmax is right on this one. I took another view at the video and it's pretty clear that the flapper was closing prematurely. Unless something climbed through the siphon jet and into the water tank, this sounds like a bad flapper. Thanks to all of you!
 
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