Except perhaps at the beach or pool, nobody likes it when things get wet, especially when the water isn’t expected. Here are some of the most common water issues you’re likely to run into around the home, and how to deal with them.
Most tank toilets function entirely by gravity, and how quickly a toilet empties depends on the amount of water flowing through it, not household water pressure. Obviously, a clogged toilet slows water flow, but the problem sometimes relates to the water entering the bowl.
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Water flows from the tank and into the bowl through holes underneath the bowl’s rim. Holes clogged with mineral
deposits, caked bowl cleaner or other material cause reduced water flow and slow everything down. For this fix, you need a coat hanger and a small hand mirror.
1. Examine underneath the bowl rim with the mirror to locate the water holes.
2. Using the hooked top of the coat hanger, poke into each hole. Work the tip of the hook around the hole to clear any buildup that has occurred.
3. Continue around the entire rim until each hole is cleared of blockage.
4. If your toilet has an accessible siphon jet – a small hole located at the bottom of the bowl drain – use the hanger to loosen any debris or deposits that may have built up here as well. (Not all toilets have a siphon jet.)
Here are a few steps you need to follow
1. Remove the tank lid and set it aside.
2. Check the chain from the flush rod to the flapper (the round, flaplike cover over the drain at the bottom of the tank). A too-long chain often snags under the flapper or becomes tangled, not allowing the flapper to close fully. The constant running you hear is the toilet trying to fill up, but the open drain isn’t allowing the toilet to do so.
3. Adjust the chain so that it’s just long enough to go from the flush rod to the flapper without sagging. Unhook the chain and reattach it to the flush arm a few links higher.
After years of use, one of your faucets may have diminished water flow, or water may come out more toward one side or the other. The problem here is that sediment, common in most household pipes, has built up behind the faucet aerator mounted at the spout opening. The only tool needed for this repair is a set of adjustable pliers. No need to shut off the water supply.
1. Wrap a bit of tape – masking tape or duct tape is fine – around each jaw of your pliers. This step prevents the pliers from scratching your faucet or aerator.
2. Grip the aerator with the pliers and twist it off in a counterclockwise direction.
3. Check the inside of the aerator for sediment, which looks like fine grains of sand, and remove any that you find. Depending on the type of aerator, you may need to remove a plastic fitting from the inside to clean it out.
4. Rinse the aerator thoroughly and replace it. Avoid over tightening.