Hearing a loud hissing or flushing noise coming from your toilet, without it being used, can be concerning. Random noises may mean that there’s something wrong and you need to take action. But, where do you look first when you don’t know the source of the problem? We’ll address some common reasons why your toilet could be making noises and how to go about fixing them.
The first thing you can easily check is your toilet handle. A broken or stuck toilet handle can cause the toilet to constantly drain water and be the source of all the noise. In order to check and see if your handle is working properly, you will need to remove the lid of the tank and shut off your water. You will also need to drain the water out of the tank by using cups and a sponge, or lifting up the flapper for the water to escape.
If your handle is stuck, you can use a lubricant and start applying pressure to see if it’ll move. If your handle is broken you will need to replace it.
Replacing a handle is simple, find the nut that is holding the handle in place and use a pair of pliers to unscrew it. Next, you need to unclip the broken handle from the flapper and pull the handle out. Grab the new handle, screw it on with the original nut and clip it onto the flapper. You can now put the lid back, turn the water on and test it out.
If your toilet noises keep happening or if your handle has no problems, then the next source may be a worn-out flapper.
Worn Out Flapper
The flapper in your toilet drains water from the tank and into the bowl. Once the tank lever (handle) is pressed on, the flapper is pulled up and the water is drained. When the tank is empty, the flapper falls back onto the flush valve opening. If your flapper is worn out or not the right fit, it can cause your toilet to run
The first thing you will need to do is take the tank lid off. Find the flapper chain and unclip it from the tank lever. Next, the flapper has two ‘ears’ that you will use to pull on, this will disconnect it from the flush valve tube.
With your new flapper, attach it to the flush valve, making sure the ears are aligned correctly. Place the new chain on the flush handle and resize it if needed.
Once you put the lid back on, test everything out to see if the noise has stopped. If the noise still occurs, the next thing to consider is that you may have calcium deposits inside your pipes.
Calcium deposits come from a high concentration of minerals in your water, it is also known as hard water. A buildup of calcium is more prominent in copper pipes. You should assess your pipes before putting any cleaners down your drains. White deposits surrounding your pipes are an indication that there may be calcium buildup on the inside.
In this next part, if you are unfamiliar and uncomfortable dealing with pipes you may want to call a professional before further damage is caused.
You will need to do further inspection by turning your water off and taking out a portion of the pipe. If you see build up formed in the inner lining of the pipes, there are solutions to remove the calcium deposits. White vinegar is a natural way to remove build-up, but it is a slower process. You will need to replace all the water in the pipes with white vinegar and leave it in there for at least 24 hours.
CLR drain cleaners contain toxins that are harmful to the skin and once used inside your pipes. You cannot drink the water immediately afterward.
In order to fix calcium buildup in your pipes, it’s recommended to switch from copper to plastic pipes and to regularly clean up the surrounding areas. Professional help can further evaluate your pipes and give you the best option.