Plumbing Filter (drip drip)
November 17, 2006 7:17 AM   Subscribe

How can I fix this permanently? In my toilet tank, the chain connecting the flusher handle to the rubber flapper binds up on itself. When this happens, the flapper doesn't seal well. I have tried adjusting this longer and shorter. I have replaced it. I'm out of things to try. Surely there's a fix.
posted by kc0dxh to Home & Garden (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Make it short enough so there's almost no slack in the chain; connect a weight to the chain so that the chain "floats" for less time when the handle is released.
posted by orthogonality at 7:21 AM on November 17, 2006

If all else fails, replacing the whole mechanism isn't that expensive.
posted by winston at 7:23 AM on November 17, 2006

I got a flapper that basically had a rubber 'chain'. It doesn't bind and the rubber's elasticity may actually help push the flapper down.

But it still took a lot of tweaking.
posted by dragonsi55 at 7:25 AM on November 17, 2006

I've tried it as short as it can be. It still bound up.

Rubber chain? That sounds promising.
posted by kc0dxh at 7:36 AM on November 17, 2006

Replace the chain with a stainless fishing leader. (The link shows titanium, but that's more than you need.) Available at Wal-Mart and sporting goods stores in various lengths, with a loop on one end and a catch on the other.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 7:40 AM on November 17, 2006

I had the exact same problem, but eventually my landlord just replaced the assembly and it cleared the problem right up. It's not that expensive, and a running toilet is annoying as hell.
posted by cschneid at 7:49 AM on November 17, 2006

I had a similar problem (there wasn't enough tension for the chain to fully drop and the flapper to close all the way), and it turned out the nut connecting the handle on the outside of the tank to the chain pin on the inside of the tank was too tight. Before you replace the whole thing, try loosening that nut up a little bit.
posted by muddgirl at 7:58 AM on November 17, 2006

I agree with replacing it with the rubber one or use the fishing leader. I ended up using a large cable tie that seems to work well.
posted by scooters.toad at 9:22 AM on November 17, 2006

I have one with similar problems, I put a stack of washers on the chain that lay on top of the rubber flapper. It keeps the chain straight, although the problem I was trying to solve originally was the flapper not sealing quite right and leaking slowly.
posted by unrepentanthippie at 9:53 AM on November 17, 2006

Slit a section of plastic drinking straw a bit shorter than the length of chain and wrap it around the chain. Trim the length of the straw section down until you get a smooth flushing action. Possibly use two separate shorter lengths of straw.
posted by xiojason at 10:32 AM on November 17, 2006

Try shortening the length of the lever inside the tank that is attached to the flusher handle, or move the connection point of the chain toward the pivot point of the handle.
posted by pgoes at 11:37 AM on November 17, 2006

I've replaced the chain with a piece of solid copper wire (12GA works better than 14GA). It's pretty easy to form a loop on either end with a pair of pliers. Not as easily adjustable as the chain but impossible to tangle and the copper won't rust. The only real problem is if someone in your household likes to lift up on the lever.
posted by Mitheral at 1:54 PM on November 17, 2006

I replace my toilet innards with this. Really easy and I never have any problem with them. They just sit there all neat and tidy in the bottom of the tank like a mushroom. You'll think you don't have all the parts but you do, that's all there is to the thing. No idea how they work. I generally can't find them in the big warehouse type stores though, call around to neighborhood type hardware stores if you want to try it or it looks like you can order them online.
posted by BoscosMom at 2:15 PM on November 17, 2006

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