Why won't this toilet tank fill?
September 12, 2019 11:55 AM   Subscribe

Redoing a bathroom. There's a single cold water line running to the sink and toilet. Water to the sink works fine, but not the toilet. Have put the water cutoff handle to 0 and 90 degree position to no avail, nothing changes. Here's a photo of the set up. Any ideas?

Previously the toilet worked fine, but it hasn't been used in a while. Again, I've adjusted the cut handle to the only two positions it goes on, 0 and 90 degree and nothing.

Any idea what's up?
posted by Brandon Blatcher to Home & Garden (8 answers total)
That valve does not appear to be a 0 - 90 (quarter-turn) valve. It appears to be a much older multi-turn valve. You need to turn it counter-clockwise at least two or three full revolutions.

If it is corroded, it may take some force to turn it on properly. But before doing so, turn off your main water supply just in case the valve breaks.
posted by JackFlash at 12:01 PM on September 12, 2019 [3 favorites]

I would replace the valve. One of its internal bits could have broken off and is blocking the flow.
posted by jonathanhughes at 12:02 PM on September 12, 2019

That sink trap looks a little goofy; like that top loop is actually a re-purposed bottom loop - my only concern is for the water to get out of the trap it has to go almost as high as the junction going into the trap, so the junction may leak. From the picture it looks like it's close to too high but not actually too high.
posted by achrise at 12:21 PM on September 12, 2019

Third on the external toilet shut off valve. I have dealt with this kind of valve sticking closed or sticking open and sometimes the torque required to turn shears off the knob or shaft.

But it could be the internal tank valve is stuck closed. To test that you could:
- find a friend to help
- shut off water to the whole house
- shut off the toilet fill valve (as much as possible
- unscrew the fill hose from the bottom of the toilet tank and put it in a bucket or pan
- have friend turn on water to whole house
- try turning the toilet shut off valve and see if you can get water out into the pan

The reason for the friend and whole house shut off is to prevent flooding your bathroom in case the inner toilet valve is stuck closed and the shut off is stuck open.
posted by sol at 12:23 PM on September 12, 2019 [1 favorite]

This has been an education, thanks y'all!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 12:37 PM on September 12, 2019

Is there not a shutoff for the entire line? I only see one for the toilet. If you’re redoing things, maybe place a single 1/4 turn shutoff valve right before the tee, so that you can work on the sink/toilet in future without having to shut water off to the whole house.
posted by caution live frogs at 5:44 AM on September 14, 2019

There's actually shutoffs for all three lines.
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 7:53 AM on September 14, 2019

FYI, turns out it was the internal toilet mechanisms, so just replaced all that with a $20 kit from Home Depot and all is good. Thanks y'all!
posted by Brandon Blatcher at 6:47 AM on October 4, 2019

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