Often we delay the remedy for the annoying intermittent running of the water in a home toilet. Let me explain the most likely solution to take care of it yourself if you have some amount of motivation to fix things around the house. Usually we need to replace the flapper. Turn off the water at the valve on the wall where a water line from the tank bottom connects. Lift the lid off the toilet tank which is behind the bowl. Looking down into the tank full of water you will see the handle lever chain hanging into the water and eventually connecting to a usually a black or red round rubber piece that we call the flapper which opens to allow the tank full of water to flow into the bowl or it closes to allow the tank to fill. On both sides of the flapper there are extended ears which have holes at the end which connect to the bottom of a tall circular column which is the overflow tube. At the bottom of that tube there are hook like protrusions where the flapper ear holes attach by sliding onto the hooks. Disconnect the flapper ear holes from the hook protrusions. Disconnect the end of the chain from the flapper’s round or triangular nose ring.
Take the flapper to the local Home Depot or hardware store. In the plumbing department you may be able to find a replacement flapper yourself or you can ask a salesman. I prefer the red color flapper replacement so the future replacement doesn’t get the disintegrating black smudge on your body or clothes with an accidental rubbing of the old flapper.
Reverse the above removal directions to replace the flapper. This DIY tip is just one possible scenario to solve the running water problem. Later on in this blog we’ll delve into a second solution if this simple flapper replacement doesn’t do the trick.