Day after day, flush after flush, endless gallons of water flow through your toilet, eventually wearing out the rubber seals, flushing mechanism, and even the toilet bowl itself. Toilets are usually solid and long-lasting items, so a repair is normally enough to get things functioning properly. On the other hand, if your toilet is a few decades old and showing signs of significant damage, replacing it with a modern bowl may be the best option. Here are eight indicators that you need a new toilet.
No one likes dealing with a plumbing clog, but this is one of the most frequent issues a toilet can have. The occasional clog is to be expected, but if you have an older low-flow toilet, you might end up having to plunge it more than once a week. You may even have to flush more than once as a clog-prevention technique, which eliminates any savings you should have realized on your monthly water bill. Feel comfortable that modern low-flow toilets hardly ever suffer from random stoppages. The assurance of a quality toilet could convince you to replace it.
Cracks and Leaks
If you observe any water pooling around the toilet, act fast. Ignoring this problem could result in mold growth, decayed subflooring and other structural damage. A leaky toilet is often relatively easy to fix. It may involve tightening the tee bolts that connect the fixture to the floor or swapping out the wax ring underneath the toilet base. But, if the leak is a result of a cracked bowl or tank, you’ll need to replace the entire toilet.
High Water Usage
Low-flow toilets have been a mainstay since the early 90s, but your aging toilet could easily predate the Energy Policy Act of 1992. This is when the gallon-per-flush (gpf) cap for residential toilets was lowered to 1.6 gpf. Therefore, you could notably lower your water bills by replacing your old 3- to 5-gpf toilet with a new low-flow model. The best high-efficiency, dual-flush toilets use an average of 1.28 gpf–1.6 gallons for the solid waste button and just 0.8 gallons to remove liquid waste.
Even if your toilet is not very old, a wobbly base is a scenario that should be addressed quickly. If the concern stems from loose tee bolts or a defective wax ring, you may be able to take care of the problem without swapping out the toilet. But, if the subfloor is rotten and bending beneath the toilet’s weight, this requires professional attention. After repairing the structural damage, it may perhaps be necessary to replace the toilet to stop a recurrence.
Significant Mineral Buildup
Hard water is tough on a toilet because it contains minerals that clog the inlet holes and siphon tubes over time. If you keep up with preventive maintenance, you may be able to keep mineral buildup under control. If you're a DIY kind of person, you can help your toilet clear away some existing deposits by carefully chipping away at them. But if the mineral deposit density gets bad enough, your toilet may fail to flush effectively, making it more vulnerable to clogs. When this happens, treat it as a sign to replace your toilet.
Minor leaks are not uncommon with any toilet and can be addressed easily with a repair. After all, adjusting a stuck float or exchanging a worn-out flapper valve is quick and inexpensive. But if the leak always comes back, there might be a larger underlying problem. This is just the excuse you need to replace your old, outdated toilet.
The appearance of your toilet (i.e., an outdated color or shape, or visible scratches) is another reason to consider replacing your toilet. Unpleasant aesthetics combined with leaks, frequent clogs or other problems certainly justify replacing your toilet.
Toilets are straightforward mechanisms that should run smoothly without worry. If you end up calling the plumber regularly to fix clogs, leaks and worn tank parts, it might be time to stop throwing away good money. Put your hard-earned cash toward a new, reliable toilet, and you shouldn't have to worry about repairs for many years.
Schedule Toilet Repair or Replacement
It doesn't hurt to try a toilet repair before traveling the route of a whole-new toilet. Our professionally trained plumbers at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning will look over your bathroom fixture thoroughly and suggest the most cost-effective solution. Don't forget, replacing your old, worn-out toilet with a high-efficiency model helps reduce your water bills for many years to come. If you choose to replace, our team can help you pick and install your new toilet for excellent performance going forward. For more information or to arrange a visit from a qualified plumber, please connect with a Service Experts office near you.