In order to repair a toilet, you have to understand how the plumbing works. Fortunately, a toilet is a very simple machine with parts that can be easily replaced. This articles looks at how a toilet is put together. |
If you’re like most people, you don’t give a lot of thought to the inner workings of your toilet while you’re going about your everyday life. Why would you? As long as an appliance is working properly, you are likely quite content to remain ignorant as to how it is performing that important job. The only time you get curious is when a problem comes about. That’s when it’s time to either learn how the toilet does its job, or to hire a professional. But you don’t have to have a degree in plumbing to do a little simple toilet troubleshooting.
For being such an essential appliance, the toilet is a remarkably simple machine. The ceramic bowl itself is the most expensive part of the mechanism, and even that isn’t terribly costly. The plumbing that makes up the tank is where the toilet’s power comes from, and all the parts can be found at a hardware store for much less than it costs to hire a professional. It pays to learn how to toilet works so you can do simple repairs yourself and save money when there is a problem.
The plumbing of a toilet basically breaks down into four simple sections. These sections combine to make the flushing process work. The first section is of course the flushing handle on the outside of the tank. This handle is connected to a chain inside the tank which is in turn connected to what is called the flapper. This flapper normally sits flush against the bottom of the tank. When the handle is depressed, the chain lifts the flapper and sends water from the tank into the bowl of the toilet.
When this happens, two things are occurring. The water from the tank pushes the waste from the bowl down the pipe, which in turn takes it to the sewage receptacle. At the same time, it fills the bowl up with clean water. After this is done, the flapper once again rests against the bottom of the tank, causing the water to stop draining into the bowl.
After the actual flushing has taken place, the last two sections of work begin. These sections are refilling the tank and stopping the tank from filling up too much. These processes are different depending on the age of the plumbing in the toilet. In older toilets, this process is controlled by a float. When the float hits the bottom, it lets clean water come back into the tank. When it rises to a certain position, that valve closes. In newer model toilets, the valve itself is attuned to water pressure and works on its own.
Whenever there is a problem with your toilet’s plumbing, keep this guide in mind and look to see which part of the process is not working. Chances are a quick trip to the hardware store and a simple replacement can save you a lot of money in repair costs.
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