Why Won’t My Toilet Flush? Causes & Fixes

Why Won't My Toilet Flush? Causes & Fixes

Having a toilet that won’t flush is a frustrating experience that nobody wants to deal with. It can be a minor inconvenience or a major problem, depending on the cause. It may be a sign that you need toilet repair services. In this post, we will discuss some common causes of toilet flushing problems and provide solutions for each one.

Clogged Drain

The most common cause of a toilet that won’t flush is a clogged drain. This can happen when too much toilet paper, feminine hygiene products, or other materials are flushed down the toilet. The clog can be in the toilet itself or in the drain line.

  • Fix: To fix a clogged toilet, you can try using a plunger. Make sure you have enough water in the bowl to cover the plunger, and then place it over the drain and pump it up and down vigorously. If that doesn’t work, you may need to use a toilet auger or call a plumber to remove the blockage.

Low Water Level in the Tank

Another common cause of a toilet that won’t flush is a low water level in the tank. This can happen if the water supply valve is not fully open, the float is not properly adjusted, or the flapper is not sealing properly.

  • Fix: Check the water supply valve and make sure it is fully open. Adjust the float so that the water level in the tank is at the correct level. The flapper might need to be replaced if it is not sealing properly.

Broken Flush Handle

If the toilet handle is loose or not functioning properly, it can prevent the toilet from flushing properly. This can be due to a broken or disconnected chain, a loose or broken handle, or a broken lever arm.

  • Fix: Make sure the handle, chain, and lever arm are all attached and operating properly. It might be necessary to replace it if the handle or chain is damaged.

Malfunctioning Flapper

The flapper is a rubber valve that controls the flow of water from the tank to the bowl. Water from the tank may leak into the bowl if the flapper is not sealing properly, causing the toilet to run continuously or to malfunction when flushing.

  • Fix: Ensure the flapper is sealing properly by inspecting it. It might need to be replaced if it is worn out or damaged. To ensure that the flapper completely closes when the toilet is flushed, make sure the flapper chain is adjusted correctly.

Clogged Vent Stack

The vent stack is a pipe that runs up through the roof and allows air to flow into the drain system, preventing airlocks and helping wastewater to flow smoothly. If the vent stack is clogged, it can cause a suction effect that prevents the toilet from flushing properly.

  • Fix: Check the vent stack for any obstructions, such as leaves, debris, or bird nests. If it is clogged, you may need to call a plumber to clear the blockage.

Damaged or Worn Out Fill Valve

The fill valve is responsible for refilling the tank with water after each flush. If the valve is damaged or worn out, it may not function properly, causing the tank to fill slowly or not at all.

  • Fix: Check the fill valve to make sure it is functioning properly. If it is damaged or worn out, it may need to be replaced.

Blocked Sewer Line

If multiple toilets in your home are not flushing properly, it could be a sign of a blocked sewer line. This can be caused by tree roots, debris, or other materials that have accumulated in the sewer line.

  • Fix: Call a plumber to inspect your sewer line and clear any blockages. This may involve using a sewer camera to identify the problem and using a sewer snake or hydro jet to clear the blockage.

A toilet that won’t flush is a common household problem, but there are several possible causes and solutions. By identifying the cause of the problem, you can take the appropriate steps to repair your toilet and get your toilet back to functioning properly.

Remember, if you are unsure about how to fix the problem or are not comfortable doing it yourself, it’s always best to call a professional plumber. With a little bit of troubleshooting and the right tools, you can get your toilet back to flushing properly in no time.