I was having a nice restful sleep one night recently at my condo in Boca Raton when my toilet woke me up with a loud hissing sound that seemed to be happening every few minutes. It was in the middle of the night and I swear I thought someone was in my bathroom repeatedly flushing the toilet. The toilet wasn’t making this sound earlier or the day before, but can a problem really come on so suddenly?
After doing some toilet repair troubleshooting, I come to find out there are three solid reasons why a toilet would be making a hissing or shushing sounds and in the world of plumbing they are known as “Phantom Flushes”. Most likely it is the flap valve, but read below to learn more about your toilet and the noises it is making.
What Causes the Phantom Flush?
1) Water may be draining into the toilet bowl from the tank via the overflow valve. There are two adjustments you can make to test this theory.
a) Fill Valve Adjustment: The fill valve will be attached to a clip that controls the height of the valve. To adjust the height of the valve, adjust the clip so the base of the fill valve rests below the top of the overflow tube.
b) Ball-Cock Adjustment: In the case of the ball-cock supply valve system, adjust the screws at the top of the assembly with a screwdriver until the ball-cock lowers and the water level drops below the top of the overflow tube.
2) The flap valve located at the very bottom of the tank may have deteriorated (as it does over time) and it is leaking water into the tank. This one is tricky to just eyeball. The valve may look in good condition, but if it has deteriorated even just a little bit, it will affect the seal. Better to just replace it.
a) To confirm it is the flap valve, there is a neat little trick you can perform. Drop some food dye in the tank of your toilet and leave it for at least 30 minutes. Do not flush during this waiting period. If there is dye in the toilet bowl, your flap valve is leaking and you have found your culprit.
3) Lastly, if the first two scenarios were not the answer to your problem, you will need to replace the entire flush-valve assembly.
This is a one person job, but if you are not handy, call the Plumbing Experts. From Boca Raton to West Palm Beach in Palm Beach County at 561-279-2460 and from Davie to Deerfield Beach in Broward County at 954-786-0477, call us and we’ll be happy to trouble shoot and repair your toilet.