Why Is My Toilet Slow to Fill?

You flushed and now you have to wait; sound familiar? This is a known toilet problem with several possible causes. Fortunately, none of them are serious concerns or expensive to correct. Follow this guide to get your slow toilet functioning efficiently again.

How to Repair a Slow-Filling Toilet

Understanding why your toilet is slow to fill is step #1 for fixing it. Keep in mind these potential reasons and the best way to handle each one.

Partially Closed Water Supply Valve

Look behind the toilet for the water supply hook-up attached to the wall. You’ll notice a valve attached to it, which enables you to shut off the water during toilet repairs and replacements. Make sure this value is open by turning it to the left.

Problems with the Fill Valve or Tube

The fill valve, which can be found attached to the top of a vertical tube device in the toilet tank, manages the flow of water into the tank. A toilet fill valve could break down, clog or slip out of alignment after years of use, stopping the tank from filling right. Follow these instructions to adjust, unclog or fix the fill valve:

  • Locate the fill valve: Remove the toilet tank lid and find the fill valve inside. It’s commonly installed 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 certain the fill valve is secure and evenly fastened to the tube. Modify the fill valve height if necessary by twisting the adjustment knob (found in newer toilets) or loosening the adjustment screw with a flathead screwdriver (required for older toilets). Next, check that the water level is approximately one inch below the top of the overflow tube.
  • Clean the fill valve: To get rid of mineral buildup and other sludge from the valve, first shut off the water in the back of the toilet and take off the fill cap. Then, slowly turn the water back on, cupping your hand over the valve to prevent from being sprayed by the water. Allow the water to flow for several seconds to flush out debris. Next, scrub away mineral buildup off the fill cap. If you notice cracks or significant wear and tear, replace the valve.
  • Clean the valve tube: Dirt lodged in the valve tube could also be at fault. Shut off the water supply and take out the valve hardware. Afterward, run a slim wire or bottle brush into the tube. Start the water supply slightly to rinse away the leftover residue. Replace the valve hardware and verify if the toilet fills faster now.

Waterlogged Float Ball

The float ball in older toilet models rises with the water level, shutting the fill valve whenever the tank is full. If the float ball is filled with water, it prevents the tank from filling efficiently.

Remove the tank lid and peek inside. A partially submerged float ball may be waterlogged. Before you replace the ball, check the float arm it’s attached to. If the arm is fixed too low in the tank, bend it up slightly to elevate the ball’s height.

If that fails to solve the issue, you might want to simply buy a new float ball; the average cost of this product ranges between $7-$20 in most hardware or home improvement stores. Just be aware that this is an older toilet design, so it may be better to modernize the existing tank parts or replace the toilet completely.

Blocked Plumbing Vent

Your home plumbing system includes vents that enable air to enter the pipes. If they end up clogged, stress may build throughout the pipes, stopping the water from flowing. This can, in turn, make your toilet slow to fill or even cause the bowl to overflow.

You'll need to jump up on the roof to check for clogged plumbing vents. Search for long, vertical PVC pipes poking up from the roof tiles. Clear away any animal nests, deep snow or other obstructions you notice 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 correctly. It’s safest to hire a licensed plumber to tackle these issues.

Schedule Toilet Repair with Finch Air Conditioning & Heating

Is your toilet still not working right? Turn to Finch Air Conditioning & Heating for dependable toilet repair in Kingwood. We can identify the reason why your toilet is slow to fill and perform a cost-effective repair. If the fixture has hit the end of its average life span, our specialists can recommend high-efficiency toilet replacement in Kingwood. We’ll help you find the replacement model and install it on your behalf. You can relax knowing that every job we execute is supported by a 100% satisfaction guarantee! To schedule a visit from us, please connect with Finch Air Conditioning & Heating today.