A toilet flapper is the rubber mechanism found in the tank of your toilet. In the flush valve, the flapper is the moving part. As it moves, it seals the water into the tank allowing the water to exit the tank during flushing. As with every moving part, the flapper also gets worn with continued use.
The first thing when you note a leak from your toilet’s tank is to establish the origin of the leak. Add a dye into the water in the tank give it a few minutes to dissolve. Check the toilet bowl, and if you find colored water, then you have a leaking flapper. You can also do it by yourself by following the steps below.
• Close the supply of water to your toilet. You will find the water inlet below the toilet tank behind the bowl.
• Check the beaded chain length from the flapper to the flush handle as you flush the water from the tank. This is to ensure you do not make it too short or long after you have replaced the flapper.
• Some manufacturers connect the flapper with a circular ring around the tube. Make sure you remove the refilling tube from the overflow tube to access the flapper.
• First, remove the beaded chain from the flush handle and slide the worn-out flapper from the overflow tube to remove it. For the new toilet models, bend the flapper ears outwards and off the pins on the flush valve.
• Note the manufacturer and the toilet model number and take them with you when purchasing a new flapper. You can get the model number from the back inside of the tank and the manufacturer’s name near the hinge of the seat.
• After acquiring the new flapper, install it by sliding it over and down the overflow tube of the toilet until it reaches the bottom of the tank until it covers the center of the flush valve. For the new plastic valve models, cut off the places marked ‘cut’ and slip the ears of the new flapper over the pins of the flush valve.
A leaking flapper can waste over 200 gallons of liters in a single day inflating your water bill to more than you can imagine. Statistics show that leaky flappers can fill a standard-sized swimming pool four times in a year, so you better have it fixed as soon as possible to avoid hefty water bills.