When it comes to the flushing power of toilets, that is something which is a toilet’s in-built factor. The quality of the toilet and how great is its flushing technology decides the flushing power of a toilet. However, sometimes, the problem isn’t about the flushing technology or the cheapness of a toilet. If your toilet has just started flushing slow, that might be due to some other reason which could be easily resolved if you try.
A very common reason that leads to slow flushing of a toilet is clogging. So, the very thing you need to check is if your toilet is clogged. If it is, you’ll have to deal with the clog in order to get your toilet’s strong flushing power back to working. Similarly, there could be other several reasons and they have their solutions as well.
Here, another question that arises is “What do you do if your toilet won’t unclog?” Firstly, it’s important to give your toilet much time to unclog itself after you’ve treated it. Even after time, if it doesn’t unclog, then you’ll need to look for the problem again. It might be due to the low level of water in the tank, or the flapper might have too much slack, or maybe some other reason. You’ll have to find out.
This very article is all about a toilet’s flush power. We’re going to discuss some problems that lead to the slow flushing power of a toilet and what solutions you can apply to improve that.
Table of Contents
How to Make a Toilet Flush Better?
In order to make your toilet flush better:
- The level of the water in the tank should be almost half-inch below the overflow tube.
- The rim holes should be carefully cleaned.
- Ensure that the toilet isn’t clogged.
- Also, check the flapper chain length. It should neither be too tight nor too loose.
- Make sure that the vent stack is also clear.
How to Increase Toilet Flush Power?
To increase your toilet’s flushing power, here are a few things you should try.
- One simple thing you can do is hold the lever down longer and a lot more water will flow from the tank into the bowl to get a better flush.
- Another thing you can check is the amount of water in the bowl and especially for high-efficiency toilets, you need to have the right amount of water in the bowl otherwise it won’t flush properly. To check the water in the bowl, take a five-gallon bucket and put a couple of gallons of water in it. Pour the water slowly into the bowl. When it starts rising, that’s the level you’ll want in your bowl. Take a pencil and mark that level. Now flush the toilet.
- If the water doesn’t rise to that pencil mark, then you’ll have to get an adjustable fill valve and change it.
Reasons for Toilet’s Slow Flushing Power
When the toilets have been in use for a longer time, they may start facing several problems, a very common one is the slow flushing power. Here are the reasons that lead to the slow flushing power of a toilet.
- Waste Pipe is Clogged
- Rim Jets are Clogged
- Water Level in the Tank is too Low
- Water Level in the Bowl is too Low
- Flapper has too much Slack
- Problems with Plumbing Vent System
- Age of the Toilet
1. Waste Pipe is Clogged
Wastewater and waste from the toilet bowl pass through a toilet waste pipe and out of the house. It is easy to tell if the waste pipe is completely blocked. You’ll know this on performing a flush. If the toilet fills when the water moves into the bowl from the tank, that means the waste pipe is clogged and needs to be cleared for proper flushing. The waste pipe may not be clogged, but you might have a partial clog if you notice a weak flush and slow drain.
2. Rim Jets are Clogged
Jet flush holes sometimes referred to as siphon jets, are compartments in the front of toilets that hold water and release it at an angle so that waste flows directly into the trap when flushed. If calcium and other deposits accumulate over time, they can block the jet flush hole and cause your toilet to flush less efficiently. So, if you have a slow flushing toilet, this could be a reason too.
3. Water Level in the Tank is too Low
Your toilet won’t flush properly when it has too little water in its tank. There is less pressure flowing through the waste pipe when the water level is low, so clogging is also more likely. In every toilet, the water level is indicated by a mark. The water level must be half an inch below the overflow pipe inside the tank. This is likely the root cause of your poorly flushing toilet if the water level in your tank is too below that mark.
4. Water Level in the Bowl is too Low
Too little water in your toilet bowl will cause the bowl to not flush as strongly as it should. Even if the water level inside your toilet’s tank is normal, but the water level in the bowl is low, this indicates that there is a problem with the fill valve apparatus inside the tank. A cracked fill value will leak water and reduce the pressure in the tube that fills the toilet.
You can check your fill valve by removing the tank lid and flushing it several times to see if the water level in the bowl is too low. You’ll know there’s is a leak if water squirts out from the fill valve.
5. Flapper has too much Slack
Too much slack in the flapper can make it hard for the flush to be effective. By a chain and rod, the flapper is attached to the flush handle at the bottom of the tank. When you push down on the handle, the rod raises the chain and opens the flapper valve, allowing water to flush into the bowl from the tank. Too long of a chain leads to too fast flapper closing which doesn’t allow enough water to flow into the flush.
6. Problems with Plumbing Vent System
Water pressure, drainage, and flushing power are affected when the plumbing vent system malfunctions. In general, you’ll hear gurgling sounds in the drains or notice that your shower or sink drains slowly, or notice a strong sewage odor if there’s a problem with the plumbing vent system.
Many homeowners do not realize that a vent system is necessary for their plumbing system to function properly. In addition to regulating air pressure, the plumbing vent system moves water through the pipes as well as removes smells and gases from the home, maintaining a healthy home environment.
7. Age of the Toilet
The age of the toilet could be a great factor in its slow flushing. If your toilet is decades old, that might be the reason it doesn’t flush powerfully anymore. Although the good quality toilets work great for a lifetime, there is still a possibility of your toilet not flushing strongly due to its old age.
Ways to Improve Toilet Flush Power
It is pretty normal for toilets to flush weakly, but that is easily solvable. So, you need not worry. Here are some ways to improve your toilet’s weak flushing power.
- Unclogging the Toilet
- Check the Toilet Tank’s Fill Line Level
- Adjust Flapper Chain
- Clean the Toilet Bowl Flush Holes
- Clean Out the Toilet Using Vinegar or Bleach
- Unclogging the Rims
- Adjusting the Water Level
1. Unclogging the Toilet
Use a plunger to unclog your toilet. Plungers break up clogs by forcing water through waste pipes back and forth. All you need to do is insert down the plunger into the bowl and push and pull the plunger a few times. This would create pressure inside the toilet and break up any clogs inside. If plunging does not work, use a toilet snake. The purpose of toilet snakes is to clear toilet clogs beyond the toilet. These snakes use long, coiled cables to reach deep into toilet pipes and dislodge the debris or whatever stuff has clogged the toilets.
2. Check the Toilet Tank’s Fill Line Level
The water in the tank should be 1 inch or half an inch below the fill valve and overflow tube. If you see the fill line-level needs an adjustment, here’s how you do it. The water level in the tank can be adjusted by adjusting the height of the float.
Most of the toilets have adjustment screws that need to be turned with a screwdriver, to adjust the water levels in the tank. Water levels rise when you turn clockwise and fall when you turn counterclockwise. You’ll have to adjust the float so there is more water flowing into the tank before the water supply is cut off. This will let you have more water in the tank that would result in stronger flush power.
3. Adjust Flapper Chain
Flapper chains often come with a clip that you can attach to another link to shorten the slack. To cut the chain if yours does not have one, you must use a wire cutter. Each time you press the handle, the flapper will open easier and stay open longer because the chain slack is reduced. As a result, the toilet will flush with the proper amount of water.
4. Clean the Toilet Bowl Flush Holes
The flush holes in the toilet bowl are located around its rim. Whenever you flush, water shoots out of the holes, so it’s possible that clogged holes decrease the pressure of the water stream. By using a bobby pin or coat hanger wire, you can clear blockages in your toilet bowl flush holes. After cleaning up the flush holes, you’ll probably be able to flush your toilet more powerfully after clearing the blockage.
5. Clean Out the Toilet Using Vinegar or Bleach
Turn off the water valve on the toilet to stop the flow of water. Flush and remove the remaining water from the bowl. This will help the cleaner work more efficiently. In the toilet bowl, pour one gallon of bleach after the water is shut off and let it sit for about 15 to 20 minutes. Then flush the toilet. As the bleach runs through the toilet system, it will clear out any blockages that are reducing the flushing power of your toilet.
The same goes for vinegar. You’ll have to pour about a cup of vinegar into the bowl after turning off the water supply and removing all the water from the bowl. Let the vinegar work for 20 to 30 minutes. Then flush it off and it would clean out the pipe ways and increase your toilet’s flushing power.
In order to refill the toilet tank after flushing, turn on the water supply. Bleach or vinegar will keep unclogging any remaining blockages as you flush your toilet a few more times.
6. Unclogging the Rims
To clean up or unclog the rims, you’ll first have to use a plumber’s putty to plug the jets. Then fill the overflow tube with acidic toilet cleaner. You’ll find the overflow tube inside the toilet’s tank. After you’ve poured the cleaner, let it sit for some time so that it could absorb all the dirt and build-ups. After a couple of hours, remove the putty and flush the toilet a few times. To remove any remaining debris, scrub the rim area with a brush.
7. Adjusting the Water Level
Water is released into the toilet bowl when you flush the toilet. Now, because all of the water has been flushed from the toilet, the tank needs to be refilled. The fill tube then adds water to the tank when the floating rubber device drops below the level and water will continue to add to your tank’s fill line until the float reaches the level of the line.
Open the toilet tank and check the float and fill line to determine if you need to adjust the water level. Then, flush the toilet with your tank open after you’ve found the float and fill line. The toilet won’t flush vigorously if the tube stops adding water before the float reaches the fill line. Now, watch the water drain into the bowl. If it stops adding water before the float reaches the fill line, your toilet won’t flush.
By moving the float, you can adjust its position on the arm connecting the float to the refill tube. After you do this, flush again. In the event that the problem persists, check the water in the bowl.
Toilet Flushes but Waste Comes Back
Sometimes, when you flush your toilet, it doesn’t carry away the waste. Rather, the waste comes back into the bowl. This problem occurs when the main sewer line is clogged. It has nothing to do with your toilet’s water level, trap ways, or flapper. When the waste comes back rather than going forward, it means your sewer line needs to be cleaned up.
This is not true only for toilets, but also for the kitchen sinks and bathtubs. If the water keeps coming back into the sink or tub, that means the sewer line is clogged. This is something you can’t treat on your own. You’ll necessarily have to call a plumber.
Week flushing toilets are a common problem. You don’t really have to panic about the issue, rather, look for the solution according to whatever problem your toilet is facing. Most of the common issues can be resolved by yourself after looking for the fix on the internet, while others would require a plumber.
We hope our article would have been helpful for our readers. If none of these tips work for your toilet, do call a plumber.