How To Replace A Toilet Flapper

Toilet flappers are the rubber piece within your toilet tank that cover the flush valve, and control the flow of water into your toilet bowl. A damaged toilet flapper will allow water to continue to run into your toilet, resulting in the toilet bowl overflowing and higher water bills. Thankfully, the process for replacing a toilet flapper is a fairly simple one, and does not require any specialized tools.

Before You Begin

The only absolutely necessary thing that you'll need to replace a toilet flapper is a replacement toilet flapper, but it is recommended that you also have a wet/dry shop vacuum and a pair of rubber gloves to make your job easier.

Replacing a Toilet Flapper

First, turn the water supply off to your toilet. The shut off valve is most commonly located underneath or just to the side of your toilet. If your toilet does not have an individual water shut off valve, turn the water off at your home's water supply valve.

Then, flush the toilet so that all the water drains out of the tank and bowl. To make the job easier, you can use the wet/dry shop vacuum to remove any remaining water.

Put the rubber gloves on before working inside the tank to protect your hands. Disconnect the flapper's chain from the flush arm (take note where the chain is connected, as the chain of the new flapper will go in the same position).

Remove the flapper from the flush valve, and slide it up the outflow pipe. In order to remove the flapper from the flush valve, you'll have to remove the plastic hooks that hold the flapper to the flush valve's pins. The easiest way to do this is to squeeze both sides of the toilet flapper and pull it upwards.

Slide the replacement flapper over the overflow pipe and down to the flush valve. Install it over the valve by centering the flapper over the valve, and hooking the plastic hooks of the flapper over the valve's pins. Jiggle the valve to make sure that it is secure.

Connect the chain of the new flapper onto the flush arm in the same place where the old flapper's chain was installed.

Reconnect the water supply line to the toilet tank, and let it refill. Flush the tank to test the new flapper. If it is properly installed, the flapper will open and close completely. However, if the flapper does not open all the way, the chain is too loose, and needs to be tightened, so move it down the flush arm. If the flapper does not close all the way, the chain is too tight, and needs to be moved up the flush arm. Adjust as needed, and test by flushing the toilet again. For further assistance, contact Dependable Plumbing or your local plumbing company.