Quick toilet fix

Compiled by Daniella Favis for Fix Shack’s Home Inspirations. Sources: For Dummies, The Home Depot and Home-Dzine.

Has your home building’s toilet sprung a leak? Here’s how to go about fixing it, DIY.

If you’ve dropped some food colouring in your toilet tank, and it’s seeped into your toilet bowl without flushing, you have a leak. Either there’s a leak around one of your tank bolts, or your spud-washer has sprung a leak - these often deteriorate over time due to hard water and mineral build-ups. Here’s how to go about fixing both problems:


 Tools and building materials needed:

• A sponge
• An adjustable wrench
• A screwdriver
• An old towel
• White vinegar
• A wire brush
• A new spud washer
• New toilet tank bolt gaskets

Step 1

If you have a shutoff valve behind your toilet, turn the water off there. Otherwise, you’ll have to turn off your home building’s main water supply.


Step 2

In order to drain the toilet tank completely, flush the toilet, and then use a sponge to soak up the remaining water.

Step 3

Use an adjustable wrench on the underside of the toilet tank, and a screwdriver on the inside of the tank, to unscrew the tank bolts. Once they’re loose, remove them, along with their nuts and gaskets. If pieces of the old gaskets remain stuck to the tank, use a wire brush to scrape them away. Dispose of the old gaskets, and clean the bolts and nuts with some white vinegar and a wire brush.


Step 4

Lift the toilet tank off the base of the toilet. Toilet tanks are heavier than they appear to be, so you might want to ask for some help. Lay the tank upside down on an old towel spread out on the bathroom floor.

Step 5

Remove the old spud washer. If it’s stuck, use the adjustable wrench to manoeuvre it off the spud nut. Then, fix the new spud washer over the spud nut, and make sure it fits snugly.


Step 6

Fix the new gaskets firmly onto each cleaned bolt. Then, thread the bolts through the holes in the bottom of the toilet tank. When you lift the toilet tank and lower it onto the base of the toilet, make sure the tank bolts slide into the holes in the toilet’s base. Using a screwdriver and an adjustable wrench, alternate tightening the cleaned nuts from side to side until they are evenly tightened.


Step 7

Turn on your water supply, and voila! Your leak should be history.

If you’re unsure of the problem, rather call a trusty plumber. And remember, keep your safety in mind when working with sharp tools and heavy equipment. Find your nearest home building store for the materials you need to complete this project.