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How to Fix Flushing Problems

Water-saving toilets tend to experience flushing problems. The following simple service should improve performance. If it doesn't work, the vent pipe may be obstructed (see How to Clear a Clogged Plumbing Vent).

Step 1

Fully open the water supply's shutoff valve to assure that there is adequate water pressure and volume.

Step 2

Clear any obstruction in the toilet trapway. Push a closet auger into the bowl opening until you feel an obstruction. Turn clockwise to screw the auger into the obstruction and draw it out.

Step 3

Use a mirror to inspect the holes on the rim's underside during a flush. Clear any clogged holes with a piece of copper wire.

Step 4

Adjust the water level until it's at the water line marked on the tank or overflow tube. Flush to test. To adjust water levels on plunger- or diaphragm-type fill valves with a float ball, either turn the adjustment screws on those models that have them or use both hands to bend the arm--down to lower the water level, up to raise it. For floatless models, turn the adjustment screw about a half turn at a time. For float-cup fill valves, pinch the spring clip to raise or lower the float.

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