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4 General Toilet Maintenance Tips


A homeowner’s best friend is the toilet plunger

It is generally accepted by most plumbers, if you keep your toilet plunger in good repair, it will do a good repair when you need it.  Put petroleum jelly on the lip of your plunger.  It will help to stabilize its position on the drain hole and keep it from becoming brittle in between clogged toilet repairs.

Remember to clean under the inside rim of the toilet bowl.  The holes in the rim can get clogged with lime deposits from the water; this affects the flush.  Unclog each hole with the end of a coat hanger that has been bent for the job.  Keep this makeshift tool stored away safely from children and pets with the plunger.

Plumber Pro Tip of the Week:

Tip #1  Undiluted chlorine bleach, allowed to stand just a few minutes, will frequently do just as good a job as commercial toilet-bowl cleaners.  It will also remove mildew and surface stains (except rust) from porcelain bathroom fixtures.  Use a toilet-bowl cleaner to remove rust.

Tip #2  Retard stain buildup and remove discoloration by scrubbing briskly inside the toilet bowl with a bowl brush for a few seconds daily.

Tip #3  To remove old mineral buildup in the toilet, sprinkle 1/2 cup of water softener around the bowl (above the waterline), immediately after flushing.  Really tough, old rings, may require pumice or a little wet-dry sandpaper.

Tip #4  To check for stopper-ball or stopper-valve leaks:  Put a few drops of food coloring into the tank and, without flushing, see if the colored water comes into the bowl.  If it does, you can assume there’s a leak.

PLUMBING TRADE SECRETS:  The first rule of toilet repair:  Carefully remove the breakable ceramic tank cover and set it on the floor on top of a towel, carpet remnant, or layers of newspaper before you go to work.  There are some toilet repairs that the homeowner just simply cannot troubleshoot.

Not every plumbing need, needs a plumber.

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