How to Repair a Leaky Toilet Valve How to Repair a Leaky Toilet Valve

What You'll Need
Masking tape
Small container
Slip joint pliers
Clean rag

In order to repair a toilet valve leak, the source of the leak must be located. It can be the result of a stiff washer. Sometimes, the valve just needs to be turned all the way to ensure it is tight. If the valve is tight and still leaking, the steps and tools below will explain how to repair it.

Step 1 – Wrapping the Pliers

In order to eliminate scratching the shut off valve, take a piece of the masking tape and wrap it on the jaws of the slip joint pliers.

Step 2 – Turn the Packing Nut

Use the slip joint pliers to grip the packing nut that is located behind the handle of the shut off valve. Slowly turn the nut about 1/8 of a turn in a clockwise direction. Before doing anything else, stop to see if simply turning the packing nut has stopped the leak. If it is still leaking, proceed to the next step.

Step 3 – Shutting off the Water Supply

Turn the main water supply to the house off. Drain the pipes. Use the small container to catch any water that may still be left in the shut off valve. 

Step 4 – Disassembling the Shut off Valve

Disassemble the shut off valve. There is no need to move it from the water supply line or from the line that goes to the sink or toilet. Take the screw out of the handle of the valve. Loosen the packing nut by untwisting it. Take out the threaded valve stem. Take a note of how the neoprene washers are positioned. 

Step 5 – Cleaning Debris

Clean the neoprene washers with a warm soapy water or wet rag. Use the rag to remove any mineral deposits that may have built up. Bend and work the washers so that they can regain their flexibility.

Step 6 – Assembling the Pieces Back Together

Assemble all of the pieces back together again. Do not use any pipe dope or plumber’s putty. For any repairs that may have to be done in the future, the putty or pipe dope will gum up the valve and make it difficult.

Step 7 – Testing the Repair Work

Turn the main water supply to the house back on. Let the line fill. After the line fills, watch for any leaking. If the shut off valve does not leak, your repair is complete. If there is still a leak, then the valve will need to be replaced.

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