Why Is My Toilet Slow to Fill?

Is your toilet tank filling more slowly than usual? This is a common toilet problem with several possible causes. Luckily, none of them are major concerns or expensive to address. Follow this guide to get your slow toilet flowing efficiently again.

How to Fix a Slow-Filling Toilet

Finding out why your toilet is slow to refill is the first step toward fixing it. Keep in mind these potential reasons and the best way to handle each one.

Partially Closed Water Supply Valve

Take a peek behind the toilet for the water supply line attached to the wall. You’ll notice a valve attached to it, which allows you to close off the water when repairs or full replacement of the tank is needed. Check this valve to make sure it’s completely open.

Problems with the Fill Valve or Tube

The fill valve, which you’ll find connected to the top of a vertical tube device in the toilet tank, controls the water flow into the tank. A toilet fill valve may break down, clog or shift out of alignment after years of use, hindering the tank from filling right. Follow these instructions to adjust, clean or fix the fill valve:

  • Search for the fill valve: Remove the toilet tank lid and find the fill valve inside. It’s commonly mounted on the left side with a tailpiece extending through the bottom of the tank and linking to the supply tube and shut-off valve.
  • Adjust the fill valve: Be sure that the fill valve is secure and evenly fastened to the tube. Adjust the fill valve height if necessary by turning the adjustment knob (common to newer toilets) or use a flathead screwdriver to loosen and adjust (required for older toilets). After that, check that the water level is about one inch below the top of the overflow tube.
  • Clear debris from the fill valve: To remove mineral buildup and other gunk from the valve, first shut off the water in the rear of the toilet and take off the fill cap. Then, slowly turn the water back on, cupping your hand over the valve to prevent from being sprayed by the water. Let the water flow for 15-20 seconds to flush out debris. Next, scrub away mineral buildup from the fill cap. If you notice cracks or substantial wear and tear, replace the valve.
  • Clean the valve tube: Dirt inside the valve tube could also be to blame. Turn off the water supply and take out the valve hardware. Then, run a slim wire or bottle brush down the tube. Turn back on the water supply slightly to flush away the leftover residue. Replace the valve hardware and confirm if the toilet fills faster now.

Waterlogged Float Ball

The float ball in older toilet models rises with the water level, closing the fill valve once the tank has filled. If the float ball is filled with water, it keeps the tank from filling efficiently.

Pull up the tank lid and look inside. A partially submerged float ball might be waterlogged. Prior to replacing the ball, look at the float arm it’s attached to. If the arm is directed too low in the tank, bend it up somewhat to raise the ball’s height.

If that does not do the trick, you may be able to install a new float ball. Just be aware that this is an older toilet design, so it might possibly be better to update the existing tank hardware or replace the toilet entirely.

Blocked Plumbing Vent

Your home plumbing system features vents that permit air to enter the pipes. If they become clogged, pressure may build inside of the pipes, blocking the water from flowing. This can, in turn, make your toilet fill slowly or even cause the bowl to flood.

You should grab a ladder and climb up on the roof to search for clogged plumbing vents. Look for long, vertical PVC pipes poking up from the roof tiles. Clear away any animal nests, deep snow or other obstructions you see to guarantee that your plumbing can function as intended.

Leaky or Blocked Pipe

If nothing is wrong with the water supply valve, fill valve and tube, float ball or plumbing vents, the slow toilet issue could stem from your supply pipes. A problem with the water line itself could prevent your toilet tank from filling appropriately. It’s best to hire a licensed plumber to handle these issues.

Schedule Toilet Repair with Church Services

When all else fails, turn to Church Services for dependable toilet repair in Houston. We can identify the reason why the water flow is so slow and perform the most appropriate repair. If the fixture has reached the end of its useful life span, our specialists can suggest high-efficiency toilet replacement in Houston. We’ll help you pick out the replacement model and install it on your behalf. You can relax knowing that every job we perform is backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee! To schedule a visit from us, please contact Church Services today.