Why Is My Toilet Slow to Fill?

Have you noticed that your toilet is taking longer to refill after flushing? This is a frequent toilet issue with several possible reasons. Fortunately, none of them are serious concerns or expensive to fix. Follow this guide to get your slow toilet working efficiently again.

How to Address a Slow-Filling Toilet

Understanding why your toilet is slow to refill is the first step toward fixing it. Consider these possible reasons and the best way to handle each one.

Partially Closed Water Supply Valve

Look behind the toilet for the water supply hook-up connected to the wall. You’ll see a valve attached to it, which enables you to close off the water during toilet repairs and replacements. Check this valve to make sure it’s completely open.

Problems with the Fill Valve or Tube

The fill valve, which can be found connected to the top of a vertical tube device in the toilet tank, regulates the flow of water into the tank. A toilet fill valve may break down, clog or slip out of alignment after years of use, hindering the tank from filling properly. Follow these tips to adjust, clear out or fix the fill valve:

  • Search for the fill valve: Open the toilet tank lid and find the fill valve inside. It’s normally mounted on the left side with a tailpiece extending through the bottom of the tank and linking to the supply tube and shut-off valve.
  • Adjust the fill valve: Be sure that the fill valve is secure and evenly connected to the tube. Change the fill valve height if needed by turning the adjustment knob (found in newer toilets) or loosening the adjustment screw with a flathead screwdriver (required for older toilets). Then, ensure that the water level is approximately one inch below the top of the overflow tube.
  • Clean the fill valve: To take out mineral buildup and other gunk from the valve, first shut off the water in the rear of the toilet and take off the fill cap. Then, slowly turn the water back on, cupping your hand over the valve to avoid getting sprayed. Let some water flow for 15-20 seconds to flush out dirt. Next, scrub away mineral buildup from the fill cap. If you observe cracks or significant wear and tear, replace the valve.
  • Clean the valve tube: Dirt inside the valve tube could also be the culprit. Turn off the water supply and take off the valve hardware. Next, run a thin wire or bottle brush into the tube. Open the water supply slightly to flush away the leftover residue. Re-install the valve hardware and see if the toilet fills faster now.

Waterlogged Float Ball

The float ball in older toilet models rises with the water level, sealing the fill valve once the tank is full. If the float ball is damaged or punctured and fills with water, it blocks the tank from filling properly.

Remove the tank lid and view inside. A partially submerged float ball might be waterlogged. Before running out to buy a new ball, check the float arm it’s secured to. If the arm is pointed too low in the tank, bend it up a little bit to lift the ball’s height.

If that fails to solve the issue, you may be able to install a new float ball. Just remember that this is an older toilet design, so it may be better to update the existing tank hardware or replace the toilet altogether.

Blocked Plumbing Vent

Your home plumbing system features vents that permit air to enter the pipes. If they end up clogged, pressure may build within the pipes, preventing the water from flowing. This can, in turn, make your toilet fill slowly or even cause the bowl to flood.

You'll need to jump up on the roof to check for clogged plumbing vents. Start looking for long, vertical PVC pipes poking up from the roof tiles. Clear away any animal nests, deep snow or other obstructions you find to help your plumbing work as intended.

Leaky or Blocked Pipe

If there's nothing apparently wrong with the water supply valve, fill valve and tube, float ball or plumbing vents, the slow toilet problem could stem from your supply pipes. A leak or blockage in the water line could restrict your toilet tank from filling properly. It’s a good idea to hire a licensed plumber to handle these issues.

Schedule Toilet Repair with Pardee Service Experts

If these tips did not handle your issue, look to Pardee Service Experts for quality toilet repair in Charleston. We can identify the reason why your toilet is slow to fill and perform the most appropriate repair. If the fixture has reached the end of its average life span, our specialists can propose high-efficiency toilet replacement in Charleston. We’ll help you find the replacement model and install it on your behalf. Rest assured that every job we execute is supported by a 100% satisfaction guarantee! To schedule a visit from us, please contact Pardee Service Experts today.

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