Manage My Life

Why won't my toilet bowl hold water?

by Manage My Life Last activity date:
April 26th, 2007

My toilet bowl on the second story of my new home (the overall age of the house is 4 years) does not hold water. It flushes OK, not great, and refills with a low amount of water which subsequently slowly drains out. The 2 downstairs toilets also only fill with less water than I am used to, and while they hold their water, they also seem to have intermittent trouble flushing. What can cause all of this and how should it be fixed? I am scared to here the answer but need to know. We have only been in this house for about 2 weeks. Thanks for your help.

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Building Supplies
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Manage My Life
It is fairly common for toilet tanks to lose water, but not common for water to be lost from the bowl. As you can see from the accompanying illustration, the water must run uphill before it runs downhill. The trap in the toilet dictates the water level. This explains why you can pour a bucket of water into a toilet, and the water level remains unchanged. The only time that this does not hold true as when the toilet or the waste pipe is partially obstructed. This can cause water to be siphoned out of the bowl. We suspect that this is your problem. You will likely need a plumber to help you correct it, but before calling the plumber, give the toilet a very vigorous plunging.

Because of the age of your house, your toilets are most likely low-volume toilets designed to save water. Unfortunately, many of these designs require you to flush more thanonce to get rid of solid waste,thus defeating the purpose. Most low flow toilets to not flush very enthusiastically. It is the nature of the beast. See the links below for more information.
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by Manage My Life
April 26th, 2007
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