Push Button Toilet Flush Problems and How to Fix Them

A functional, clean toilet is essential in every residential or commercial building. A malfunctioning toilet is not only frustrating but also costly in terms of utility bills and water damage repairs. Unlike the older toilet models found in some old homes, newer toilet designs have push buttons that flush when you press the button mechanism. Unfortunately, you might have to grapple with numerous push button toilet flush problems from time to time.

Despite how hard you press the push button, sometimes the mechanism can fail, feel loose than usual, and stop flushing the waste away. That is the time when you start dealing with the hassle of calling in the plumber near you to have your toilet fixed, of course, at a price. The process of fixing the malfunctioning push button in our toilet is the same regardless of its position. In this article, you’ll learn everything you need to know about push-button toilet problems and how to fix them without too much hassle.

Common Push Button Toilet Flush Problems

If your bush button toilet won’t flush, here are some possible causes and how to fix the issue like a real pro:

Low Water Level

If the water in your toilet’s tank is too low, the push button flash mechanism might fail to work. Typically, if the water is more than two inches below the top of the overflow tube, you’ll feel no resistance behind the toilet’s push-button when you press it. Sometimes, even when there is no problem with pressure, the water level will always be too low for the push button to function properly. This mostly happens if the water valve is turned off. Moreover, you don’t expect the toilet to completely flush away all the waste if the water is too low.

The solution to this push-button toilet problem is having “the correct tank level”. Some toilet makers include a mark on the toilet tank to help users know the right water levels. So, you should check whether the water level actually reaches the mark indicated on the side of your toilet’s tank. Return the water to the recommended manufacturer’s water level mark if anyone adjusted it manually.

Clogged Toilet

Cloths and sanitary towels can easily clog your toilet and cause clogging. That is why you should use toilet paper only and avoid wipes or other hard paper when handling your business in the bathroom. Using too much toilet paper or sanitary napkins can also clog the pipe and block the flushing system of your toilet. 

Minor clogs or debris, such as small obstacles, can cause a serious hindrance to the flow of a flush, resulting in a weak flush. You’ll see some water returning to through flange every time you flush the toilet, causing a disgusting mess to your bathroom. However, if you invest in modern non-clogging toilets, you may only experience a weak flush, not a completely blocked toilet.

To fix the problem, you need to unclog the toilet pipe by removing the unwanted items manually with a metallic rod. Use a drain plunger to unclog the toilet for about 20 seconds and press the push button to see whether the flushing is working properly. However, unclogging the blocked piping walls manually can be challenging if the clogging is caused by product corrosion. 

If that is the case, turn off the water flow to your toilet and try adding hot water to the bowl. Let the hot water sit in the bowl for some time and flush it down the drain. If that option doesn’t work, seek professional help from a trained plumber.

Warped Flapper

A rubber flapper, just right under the toilet lid, is designed for releasing water when the push-button is pushed or pressed. If the rubber flapper is warped or bent, your toilet’s flushing mechanism is compromised.

The rubber ball prevents overflow by rising to close the water intake hole when the water rises in the toilet’s tank. You can raise the float by bending the float ball’s arm upwards and turning the adjustment screw on the valve.

To fix the warped flapper, you first need to ensure the flapper chain has the appropriate length and is working properly. That means the flapper closes the toilet hole perfectly when your toilet is not in a flush mode. Also, try adjusting the length of the chain to make sure the slack in the chain is not too little or too much. In other words, the chain’s length has to be correct to fix this particular toilet push button problem.

Blocked Inlet Holes

Blocked toilet inlet holes can badly eat into your monthly utility bills because you’ll keep losing a lot of water that could have been utilized for flushing. The simplest way to know whether you’re losing water or not is by checking for leakages on the toilet bowl’s side. Another sign is checking whether water is streaming diagonally or straight down. Water that is streaming on the side of your toilet’s bowl can cause serious water damage issues in your home. With an ordinary mirror, you can assess the extent of the blockage under your toilet seat and examine the condition of the water inlet holes. 

To correct the issues, pour hot vinegar through the toilet’s overflow pipe, let it sit for several hours, and use an Allen wrench or wire to unblock the holes. Recurring issues such as bacteria or mineral deposits can also block the toilet’ tank’s inlet holes and affect the flushing system. That means you need to regularly check and unblock the inlet holes. Consider investing in a water softener if the blocking is caused by the hard water in your area.

Sometimes, the push button toilet might be a result of a poor installation or the design of the toilet drains. You need to ensure that the drains have a downward slope to avoid having a pool of water in your pipes. A professional plumber can redesign the drains for you to ensure that all the wastewater flows down the bowl to the main sewer system.

Wrap Up

While installing a modern toilet with a push-button mechanism is a good addition to your bathroom, dealing with a malfunctioning push button toilet is so wearisome. When the water doesn’t come down the toilet tank, everything starts looking messy and ugly in your otherwise clean and well-maintained bathroom. To avoid complex plumbing repairs and costly water damage repairs down the road, you need to hire an experienced plumber to have it fixed right the first time before the issue escalates into a serious plumbing problem.


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