This question is extremely common. Fortunately, the answer is a simple one! The handle of a toilet has a chain attached to it within the tank of the toilet. This chain’s job is to pull up on a plug when the handle is pushed down. That plug, also known as the flush valve, is what keeps the fresh water in the back of the tank. Then, when it’s unplugged, water is able to rush down into the toilet bowl, flushing your toilet out. So, why is the toilet handle loose? Even worse, why is the toilet handle not working? Let’s take a quick look.
Diagnosing the Problem
If your toilet handle has suddenly stopped working or, perhaps, has never worked, the problem is simple. The chain that attaches your handle to the tank’s flush valve is likely not attached, or is so loose that the handle does nothing at all. Every time you push down on the handle, it’s doing nothing because it’s unable to pull up the plug that initiates a flush.
To fix this issue, start by lifting the lid off of the toilet’s tank and setting it aside. Now, look inside. Is there a chain attached to the extended interior handle? If so, it must be incredibly loose. There may also be no chain attached to the handle. Check if there’s one sitting in the bottom of the tank. If the chain is missing entirely, you’ll need to head to a hardware store to buy one. If it’s just been detached from the handle, your job is an easy one.
Attaching a Flush Chain
Attaching a flush chain is easy. There is usually a hook at the end of the interior handle. Simply hook the end loop of the chain over that hook. Now, give it a flush. Check to see if the last loop is tight enough. Sometimes, a chain is longer than necessary. If the chain doesn’t pull open the flush valve or not enough for a flush, you’ll need to tighten it a bit.
If your flush chain is too short to reach the handle, and this toilet has never had a working handle since you moved in, the short chain is likely the reason for that. Whoever installed it realized the chain was too short to fit and didn’t bother getting a new one. Unfortunately, that’s now your job. Head to a hardware store and get a chain that’s a bit longer.
Tightening a Flush Chain
Tightening a flush chain is simple. Simply hook one of the loops that’s slightly further down the chain and try flushing again. It should only take a couple adjustments to get to the loop that’s just right. When you find the right one, the chain should be long enough to pull the flush valve open, get a successful flush, and then quickly close again when the water level in the tank is low.
Toilet Repair Services
If these solutions didn’t work for you, give us a call at POM Plumbing. Is your toilet handle loose? We’ve seen all there is to see with regard to dysfunctional toilets, and we look forward to assisting with yours.