Water leak from base of toilet: June 2018 | Mr. Rooter Plumbing Blog

Toilet Leaking At The Base? Your 2023 DIY Fix It Guide!

💧 Toilet Leaking At The Base?

Are you looking for a way to repair your leaking toilet before calling in an expensive professional plumber?

We’ve got just the guide for you!

Here, we’ll provide step-by-step instructions so you can diagnose and fix a leaking toilet – without breaking the bank or your toilet tank.

From identifying which type of issue is affecting your toilet to gathering all the necessary tools and parts needed for repair, we’ll discuss everything you need to do when toilets leak.

So if tackling this project yourself sounds like something up your alley, read on!

💧 What’s Causing Your Toilet Leak?

🧰 Faulty Wax Seal

When the wax ring between a toilet and its drainpipe is compromised, it can lead to dangerous water leaks.

This could appear in the form of visible damage on the seal itself or be invisible until an accumulation of water begins gathering at your toilet’s base – both presenting significant health risks due to bacterial contamination.

Excess water doesn’t just put your toilet tank and bowl at risk but can also damage surrounding areas.

If you notice water pooling around your toilet, you should act quickly to prevent structural damage.

🧰 Unattached Tee Bolts

Unattached tee bolts are another common cause of toilets leaking at the base.

Tee bolts are metal pieces that attach the toilet to the floor and keep it in the proper position.

If these bolts become loose or dislodged, they can create a gap between the toilet and its wax seal, allowing water to pass through and leak onto your bathroom floor.

Toilet flange extenders can help prevent this from happening as they fit over tee bolts and extend them further into the floor, providing a more secure attachment.

Additionally, ensuring that all screws in the tee bolt area are properly tightened will help ensure that your toilet is adequately secured to the floor and prevent any potential leaking issues.

🧰 Loose Water Supply Line

If your toilet leaks at the base, it could be due to a loose water line.

The water supply tube connecting the tank and bowl can weaken over time, allowing water to escape and create an uncomfortable mess on your floor.

To combat this problem, ensure all connections are adequately fastened with tightened screws or bolts if necessary.

Furthermore, replacing any worn rubber washers in that same line will not only guarantee a tight seal but also help prevent future leakage issues!

🧰 Condensation Problems

When too much moisture builds up in your bathroom, it can be treacherous for the toilet.

The additional condensation seeps into small crevices and cracks around the toilet’s base, causing seals to loosen and water eventually leaks out.

Unlike the other problems, there isn’t a clear-cut solution for condensation issues.

You’ll have to inspect your toilet from your toilet bowl rim to your shutoff valve and consider other potential environmental factors.

💧 How to Fix a Toilet Leaking At The Base

🧰 Checking For Condensation


Inspect Your Bathroom

Begin by closely examining your bathroom’s walls and ceilings, paying special attention to any discoloration or visible moisture buildup.

You should also check behind cupboards or other locations where condensation may have pooled.

2. Check the Humidity Level

You can use a digital hygrometer device to measure humidity levels in your bathroom.

These can be found at hardware stores.

You want to ensure it remains within 40%-60% Relative Humidity (RH) – anything above this range can cause excessive condensation.

3. Investigate Airflow Issues

Poor ventilation can contribute to higher humidity levels and lead to water dripping from pipes or walls, so check around windows and doors for air leaks.

Additionally, ensure you’re using an exhaust fan when bathing, showering, and running hot water, as these activities will add moisture into the air, which can pool around the toilet’s base and cause a leak.

4. Fix Any Leaks

If you find any cracks or gaps allowing air into your bathroom, use caulk or weather stripping to seal them off and reduce the condensation coming into your home.

🧰 Replacing The Wax Seal

1. Shut Off the Water Supply

Before you start any work on replacing the wax ring of your toilet, make sure to turn off the water supply that runs to it first.

This can usually be found under a bathroom sink or behind your toilet.

2. Remove Old Wax Seal

Once you have turned off the water supply, the next step is to remove the old wax ring from around the base of your toilet.

You should use a putty knife or another flat object to carefully pry away the old sealant while not damaging any surrounding surfaces.

3. Clean and Dry the Area

After you have removed the old wax seal, it’s important to thoroughly clean and dry the area around where it was located.

This will ensure that no dirt or debris gets in the way of forming a secure new seal when you re-apply it later on.

4. Apply New Wax Seal

For this step, you will need to purchase a new wax ring specifically designed for toilets – they come in various sizes and shapes depending on your specific model.

Now, using a putty knife or caulking gun (depending on if you bought pre-made seals or individual sheets), spread out evenly along all edges of the base of your toilet bowl so that there is an even distribution or pressure against its sides.

5. Securely Fasten the New Wax Seal

Once you have applied your new wax ring, use a utility knife to cut away any excess material around its edges – this will help keep everything looking neat and tidy while ensuring nothing has been missed during installation!

Finally, use some screws or bolts to firmly fasten it down onto your bathroom flooring, taking extra care not to over-tighten them as this may cause damage to the surfaces.

6. Test Your Work

To test whether or not your wax ring is installed correctly, turn back on your water supply and flush your toilet.

If there are no more leaks at its base, then congratulations! (And if not, be ready to turn your water supply back off again quickly!)

🧰 Tightening The Tee Bolts

1. Shut Off the Water Supply

Begin by shutting off the water supply to the toilet, either by using the shutoff valve located behind the toilet or turning off the main water supply for your house.

2. Flush the Toilet

Flush the toilet to ensure that the remaining water is emptied from the toilet tank and bowl.

3. Unscrew the Toilet Bolts

Unscrew and remove both tee bolts connected to your toilet base. You may need to unscrew some plastic caps to reach the flange bolts/tee bolts.

4. Inspect the Toilet Bolts

Inspect both ends of each tee bolt for wear and tear, ensuring all connections are tight and secure before replacing them in their respective holes in your floor flange and the bottom side of your toilet base.

5. Screw and Secure the Loose Bolts

Once the two bolts are firmly in place, screw down two nuts onto each bolt until they are equally tightened against each other above their respective holes.

Be careful not to overtighten these bolts, as this can cause damage to other components below, such as pipes or fittings!

6. Turn the Water Back On

If everything has worked as it should and the tank bolts are now in place, your toilet should be good to go.

Considering referring back through all steps listed above again if needed.

🧰 Connecting The Water Supply Line

1. Shut Off the Water Supply

Begin by shutting off the water supply to the toilet, either by using the shut-off valve located behind the toilet or turning off the main water supply for your house.

2. Flush the Toilet

By flushing the toilet, you ensure that all the remaining water is emptied from the toilet tank and bowl and won’t get in the way of your work.

2. Unscrew the Supply Line

Remove any hoses connected to the shutoff valve, then locate and unscrew the supply line connection at its base.

If it has been tightened over time, you may need adjustable pliers or a wrench to do this successfully.

4. Examine the Supply Line

Examine your existing supply line and replace it if it’s clearly damaged.

5. Reattach the Supply Line

Connect it to its original spot near your shut-off valve, ensuring it is fastened tightly so no water can escape. Make sure all connections are tight but not overly tight. Otherwise, you can easily cause damage to the pipes and fittings around the line.

6. Turn the Water Supply Back On

Check for leaks and allow some time before testing the toilet out. Review the previous steps if you come across any problems.

Related Reading: DIY Guide to 15 Common Plumbing Problems & Solutions

💧 Final Thoughts

Fixing toilet leaks at their base is relatively straightforward for most American homeowners.

With the right tools and DIY spirit, you can tighten your tee bolts, reconnect your water supply line, replace your wax seal, or fight the condensation that your bathroom exhaust fan isn’t picking up.

However, if you feel this task may be too daunting, don’t hesitate to contact Phyxter Home Services.

Phyxter provides professional plumbing services in a variety of locations across North America.

We offer quick and reliable service for any leaking toilet base, so if you need assistance, check out if we service your area.

Want to learn more about your home’s plumbing problems? Feel free to check out our other plumbing articles!

Related Reading: DIY Guide to 15 Common Plumbing Problems & Solutions

plumbing – Why does my toilet leak from bottom after flushing and water tank is refilling


1 year, 2 months ago

9k times

After being flushed, the toilet leaks from the bottom as the tank tries to refill the bowl.   Anyone have any idea why this is happening every time? Can I fix this myself? I want to avoid having to hire someone unless its completely necessary. Help pls

  • plumbing
  • leak
  • toilet


This sounds like the gasket between the tank and the toilet. When you flush, you open a flapper assembly in the tank to allow water to flow into the bowl. This drops the water level in the tank, which moves the ballcock float down, allowing the fill valve to open. There’s usually a small hose (like a flexible straw) that goes from the fill valve to your drain assembly that releases some water into the bowl as well to bring it up to level.

A leak between the tank and bowl would run down the side of the bowl and to the bottom (where it’s more noticeable). This would explain a leak that only happens during a bowl filling.

There’s a couple of ways to play this. Both involve removing the tank from the bowl (and the fill line as well)

  1. Replace the flapper assembly. This isn’t expensive or hard. There’s a retention ring underneath the tank that allows the assembly to be removed. A fresh gasket should do the trick and this isn’t a lot of money. If your flapper is old, replacing it early won’t hurt.
  2. Lube the gasket. They can and do sometimes become dry and/or shrink a bit. You can buy PTFE pipe sealant dope fairly easily (they sell small “weekend warrior”-sized tubes of it). You’ll still need to pull the flapper assembly off, but you’ll add a ring of sealant around the bottom of the tank and the top of the bowl so it engages the gasket. Then tighten the ring down and re-mount the tank.

Toilets use a wax ring for sealing the toilet to the drain pipe.

Usually a simple repair, shut off the water, flush and drain/wipe water from the bowl, and undo the two/four bolts/nuts holding the toilet to the floor.

Remove the toilet and replace the wax ring.

Check for it leaking anywhere else, tank joint, pipe connection, or cracks in bowl or tank(this is toilet replacement problem).

Most leaks from other places, fill line, gasket joint between toilet and tank, should run along the outside of the bowl.

Make sure the outside of the bowl tank is dry, flush and with a dry hand or paper towel check all around the toilet bowl, especially the back hard to reach places. Should locate where the leak is coming from, a joint gasket or worst case a crack. If bowl stays dry,then the wax gasket needs to be checked and replaced. Wax gaskets are one use only.


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Why does the toilet leak after flushing, possible causes of the leak and solutions

The most complex element of any toilet bowl is the flush tank. When it works like clockwork, it is very good, but it will not always be so. Sooner or later, some element, whether it be plastic parts, a gasket or something else, will fail and a leak will occur. In the best case, you will have to pay more for water than before, in the worst case, a flood will occur that can even affect neighbors. In order to avoid this, it is necessary to regularly inspect the entire structure of the toilet bowl and, if smudges, drops, puddles of water under the toilet bowl are found, look for the cause and eliminate it.

  • Causes of a toilet leak after a flush
    • Leak through a pear or petal
    • Float incorrectly adjusted
    • Water overflow (ball valve incorrectly adjusted)
    • Leakage between cistern and toilet seat
    • Leak at the junction of hose and ball valve

If the toilet was installed correctly and always worked properly, and the leak only appeared now, the reasons may be the following:

  • Leakage through bulb or petal
  • Incorrect adjustment of the ball valve
  • Leakage between cistern and toilet seat
  • Leak at the junction of ball valve and hose
  • Float incorrectly adjusted

These are the most popular and well-known reasons why the toilet is leaking.

Leakage through bulb or petal

To fix leak through petal or bulb , it is necessary to remove the lid of the toilet bowl and carefully inspect the structure. If the integrity of the parts is broken, they should be replaced. But most often they form plaque due to long-term operation. In this case, you should wipe the petal, pear and saddle, and also check all the components of the cistern for tightness.

Incorrectly adjusted float

If the leak is due to an incorrectly lowered float, this will be noticeable after removing the cover. In this case, you should adjust its height or simply correct it if it has gone astray and the malfunction will be eliminated. It would be useful to inspect the rubber seals immediately and replace them if necessary.

Water over the overflow (ball valve misadjusted)

If water flows over the overflow, the ball valve is out of adjustment. First you need to remove the lid and make sure that the water actually flows through the overflow. The next action in this case would be self adjustment of this item. You should try to bend the float lever, and if water gets into the float itself, then you need to pour it out and install the element in its place. If the integrity of the float is broken, it should be replaced with a new one.

A leak may be due to a worn gasket or the ball valve itself, in which case they must be replaced. If the leak is directly due to the ball valve, you can try to lower the float a little. To do this, you need a regular plastic adjusting pin. In the most difficult cases, you need to disassemble and clean the tap, and if this does not help, change the part.

Leakage between the cistern and the

pedestal If water is leaking between the cistern and the pedestal on which it is installed, there may be several reasons.

  • The first is the connecting bolts, if they are loose, rusted or the gasket under the nuts has worn out. It is necessary to shut off the water, drain it from the tank and disassemble the structure. After that, you need to check the bolts and nuts for damage or rust, and inspect the gaskets for wear. In case of violations, a new mounting kit must be purchased and installed. During installation, it is better to lubricate rubber gaskets with plumbing sealant.
  • The second reason for the leakage in this place may lie in the gasket between the tank and the toilet platform, which seals the joint and protects the faience parts from abrasion. Water can leak into the gap formed from abrasion or a banal shift of the gasket. If the gasket is intact, its edges should be treated with sealant and carefully pressed, and then the drain tank should be installed. No need to be too zealous and overtighten the connecting bolts – firstly, the tank can burst, and secondly, a pinched gasket will last much less time.

Leak at the junction of the hose and ball valve

If water drips at the junction of the ball valve and the hose, this problem is easily fixed . First you should try to tighten the nut that tightens the hose. If this does not help, unscrew the hose and inspect the gasket. Perhaps the reason is in it, in its natural wear and tear. In this case, it should be removed and a new one installed in its place. The hose is then reattached. It is not necessary to tighten the plastic nut that tightens the hose with a metal tool, because you can strip the threads or, by overdoing it, cause the nut to burst.

Another cause of water leaking into the toilet after flushing can be salt deposits on the saddle surface. In this case, you should carefully disconnect the pear, and then clean the saddle from the salt deposits formed on the surface with sandpaper.

Whatever work is done to fix a leaking toilet, it must be done very carefully, because the structure is very fragile and easily damaged. All rubber gaskets should be lubricated with sealant before installation in place to improve tightness.

Thus, it is not difficult to fix a leak in the toilet after flushing, since the reasons for this are few and the solutions are known. The main thing is to do everything carefully so as not to damage the design of the toilet bowl and thereby do more harm.

the toilet cistern is leaking, how to fix it, the causes of breakdowns

Toilet bowl and bidet / 27.12.2020

Found that the toilet cistern is leaking? Do not rush to call a plumber – you can solve the problem on your own, which will help you save a lot.

And the main reasons why water flows from the tank to the toilet are listed below.

Leaks due to overfilling

In some cases, leaks are due to malfunctioning locking mechanisms.

This is a very common problem that can be solved in several ways:

  1. Remove the cover from the installation.
  2. Raise the float and hold it.
  3. If you raised the float and no leak is noticed, then the problem is in the lever. He is simply unable to block the outflow of water. The problem is solved elementarily – by bending the float to the required angle.
  4. If there is a leak, then there is a defect in the valve. Examine it and the hairpin fixing it. There should be no signs of deformation or corrosion. Check it for offset. The hairpin is easy to replace with a thick copper wire.
  5. Is everything okay with the hairpin? Check valve opening. In the event of a breakdown, a comprehensive replacement is required.
  6. The defect may also be in the gasket. Try pushing the valve against it. If the leak has stopped, then you need to change it or adjust the pressure.

If the toilet is constantly running water, this is most likely the problem. The easiest way is to replace the valve.

Leaks at the junction of the cistern and toilet

Why does the toilet constantly run water?

There may be a connection problem. In this case, you will have to do a diagnostic disassembly:

  1. Shut off the riser.
  2. Drain all water from the tank.
  3. Remove the supply pipes.
  4. Now remove the fastener. Sometimes they rust and it is impossible to remove them. In this case, a hacksaw and any liquid key will help.
  5. Remove the tank.
  6. Pull out the cuff attachment tab.
  7. Drain the remaining water.
  8. Remove any traces of corrosion.

Now you need to replace everything in reverse order. All gaskets must be replaced with new ones.

Leak due to defective hoses

The tank often leaks due to a bad hose connection.

In general, flexible wiring is strong enough and rarely leaks. The only vulnerability is the connection to the tank. The problem is solved in an elementary way – by simply tightening the fasteners.

If the fasteners have nothing to do with it, the defect is in the gasket. Then the problem is solved by a simple replacement.

Even if it has not lost its integrity, elasticity is lost over time and it becomes wooden.

Be careful with plastic fasteners. It happens that water flows due to constriction.

It just cracks if you put too much pressure on it.

Leaking from behind a rubber bulb

If water is leaking from the tank into the toilet, the bulb is most likely the problem.

This is the rubber seal at the very bottom of the tank that holds the liquid inside.

It is rubber, which means it loses elasticity over time. Becoming wooden, it ceases to be airtight and forms micro-slits. Therefore, as a rule, water does not flow in a continuous stream, but in a thin stream.

What to do if the pear becomes unusable? Just take it off and go to the plumbing store – buy a similar one. Trying to restore a broken part is pointless.

Plumbing is leaking due to a misaligned float

If the toilet is leaking due to a misaligned float arm, it must be replaced. This is a natural breakdown that occurs over time. Just buy a similar part in the plumbing store and put it in its place.

It happens that a hole is noticed on the float, then it can be heated with a lighter and try to “close up”. The measure is temporary, but it will still help to use the plumbing a little more.

Leaking due to the siphon

The siphon membrane also wears out. You can repair it as follows:

  1. Place a crossbar together with the tank cover and tie the float arm.
  2. Drain all water.
  3. Disassemble the hose connection to the tank.
  4. Slightly loosen the nuts holding the siphon.
  5. Replace the diaphragm with a new one.

Reassemble the system in reverse order.

Seam leaks

Why does the toilet flow?

The sealant may have leaked and needs to be replaced.

All you have to do is change the gasket according to these instructions:

  1. Drain the water and sponge off the residual water.
  2. Loosen the drain nuts slightly.
  3. Remove all tank hardware.
  4. Remove lock nuts.
  5. You now have access to the seal. If it is dry, buy a new one and replace it with it.

Leaks due to cracks

If the toilet is leaking before and after flushing, and the water is obviously not coming from the joints, it is most likely that a crack has formed. Often this is due to the age of plumbing or due to damage.

In this case, the tank must be removed and cleaned of water. Dry it with a sponge and a hair dryer so that there is no water left at all. When the moisture is gone, clean the crack with a brush.

It is better to drill the crack from both sides with a thin drill.

In that case, she won’t go any further. When the preparation is finished, fill it with sanitary sealant.