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Toilet Leak Question #4749322
05/06/18 01:21 PM
05/06/18 01:21 PM
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 347
Tennessee
SWS Offline OP
SWS  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 347
Tennessee
I have 2 American Standard toilets, both over 25 years old. I maintain them myself, and have been successful replacing every component & gasket over those years. Rather cold, high-clorine city water is not friendly to the internals, so maintenance is to be expected. However, I recently have a drip around the 2 tank hold-down bolts that I have been unable to fix with several new bolt & gasket kits, even with readjustment. Suspected reason -> I recently discovered that someone is leaning on the tank as a backrest. Informal comment from a plumber is that if you crack the seal one time, then it will continue to drip.
Given:
-> 'User education' ( i.e. No Leaning! ) is not an option.
-> Inner tank surface is not smooth (years ago, I smoothed-out the porcelin a bit with a Dremel tool.
I just took off the peaks - it helped.
-> Drip is worse when then incoming water gets really cold in the winter (gasket shrinkage).

I wonder if in my next repair attempt that I should add some sealant under the new rubber washer, inside the tank?
If so, what should I use? I'm thinking of something that stays flexible when submerged, can withstand cold water, will not leach-out to discolor the water, is compatible with the seal material, will 'grab' rough porcelin, but can be scrapped off when necessary.
I am thinking just a little flexible sealant on the uneven tank surface will help considerably.

All I know to buy are solid brass bolts with rubber/fiber washers in kits from common sources. A few years ago, solid brass bolts were hard to find, but I think I have a source now. Overall, I am not impressed with quality of the rubber/fiber washers. If you can recommend some better kits or gasket material I can cut myself, then that would be great.

Note: I ensure everything is clean and dry before reassembly. After cleaning, I direct a fan on the inside of the tank for about 2 hours. I also recheck bolt torque, without overtightening. I think my technique is OK, the materials are lacking. ...and of course the blasted 'leaning' stresses everything...!

Thank you for your help!

SWS

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749335
05/06/18 01:36 PM
05/06/18 01:36 PM
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,221
Where the wind comes sweepin'
Reddy45 Offline
Reddy45  Offline
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,221
Where the wind comes sweepin'
I have the exact same leak during cold weather. It actually corroded the brass bolts so there was a mysterious blue liquid leaking behind the toilet (I don't use those cleaner tabs).

Interested to see what fixes are proposed.

But you gotta train that person to not lean back. They should be leaning forward anyway to improve "passage" due to how the intestines are shaped.

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749349
05/06/18 01:45 PM
05/06/18 01:45 PM
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,129
Coastal South Carolina
edwardh1 Offline
edwardh1  Offline
Joined: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,129
Coastal South Carolina
dry toilet tank, coat bolt heads and around the heads with silicone sealant
let dry


These products are all new every year?? They are a revolution!!! Razor blades, mens shirts, TVs, wiper blades, gutter guards, hearing aids... according to the ads. But also all new last year
Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749361
05/06/18 01:58 PM
05/06/18 01:58 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 2,215
Toronto, Canada
George7941 Offline
George7941  Offline
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 2,215
Toronto, Canada
Just checking, you do not have any metal washers inside the tank, do you? Just the bolt and the rubber washer goes inside the tank.


2006 GMC Sierra 4.3l, NV3500,G80 , Mobil 1 5W30, Dexcool.
1987 BMW R80 - sold
2015 Honda CBR300R

Staying out of the right lane a lot.
Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: edwardh1] #4749364
05/06/18 01:59 PM
05/06/18 01:59 PM
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 130
Kentucky
fordman65 Offline
fordman65  Offline
Joined: Aug 2012
Posts: 130
Kentucky
+1
Agree


97 Mercury Gran Marquis GS
4.6L V-8 250K
Castrol FS Edge or Castrol FS HM 5W or 10W 30
Kendall Semi-Synthetic 5W-20,5W-30 or 10W-30
WIX Oil 51372 or K&N HP 2010 Oil Filter
Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749369
05/06/18 02:07 PM
05/06/18 02:07 PM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 938
midwest
JamesBond Offline
JamesBond  Offline
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 938
midwest
Do you use a nut in the middle? How many washers and rubber gaskets are you using, and where? I would think that leaning on the tank would put stress on the lower nut at the bowl but that the bolt head and nut sandwiching the tank should stay in place. Maybe a new one piece toilet would be a more permanent solution.

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749372
05/06/18 02:08 PM
05/06/18 02:08 PM
Joined: Mar 2017
Posts: 598
West Ma.
rollinpete Offline
rollinpete  Offline
Joined: Mar 2017
Posts: 598
West Ma.
Get some of this, iv'e tried it pretty good stuff.



Pete.
97 Ford Expl.Sport 4.0 ohv 4wd 5spddrive185k miles
Last Change;
50/50 QSUD, QSHM. 5w30
Fram xg8a, Fram CA8141

Currently under the influence of oil shocked2

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749397
05/06/18 02:36 PM
05/06/18 02:36 PM
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 314
Minnesota
bruckus Offline
bruckus  Offline
Joined: Feb 2010
Posts: 314
Minnesota
I did silicone around my bolts at one time. Last winter I decided to replace our old toilets with comfort height,elongated and 1.28 gallon Kohlers. Wish we would of did it sooner. The flush is great and they are way more comfortable.

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749398
05/06/18 02:37 PM
05/06/18 02:37 PM
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 347
Tennessee
SWS Offline OP
SWS  Offline OP
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 347
Tennessee
Thanks for the replies & ideas thus far!

Per question, yes, I use a nut in the middle. No washer inside tank.
The order from inside the tank (just like kit instructions):
Bolt Head
Gasket
Tank
Washer
Thin nut
Bowl
Gasket
Washer
Nut

I have priced a one-piece toilet several places, the recommended ones are SO expensive!

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: edwardh1] #4749405
05/06/18 02:59 PM
05/06/18 02:59 PM
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 10,410
ROCHESTER, NY
Char Baby Offline
Char Baby  Offline
Joined: May 2005
Posts: 10,410
ROCHESTER, NY
Originally Posted By: edwardh1
dry toilet tank, coat bolt heads and around the heads with silicone sealant
let dry


This is what I did as well(RTV) and it's held nicely for several years now.


"Retired"
-----------------------------------

'80 Firebird FORMULA V8/4bbl-purchased "NEW"
'15 Nissan Altima 2.5 SV
'15 Honda Civic LX
Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749406
05/06/18 03:03 PM
05/06/18 03:03 PM
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,554
USA
mk378 Offline
mk378  Offline
Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 1,554
USA
Shim between the tank and the wall so that if someone leans on the tank, the force is transferred to the wall instead of the tank to bowl joint.

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749408
05/06/18 03:04 PM
05/06/18 03:04 PM
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 244
Virginia, USA
Nukeman7 Offline
Nukeman7  Offline
Joined: Sep 2006
Posts: 244
Virginia, USA
If you cannot teach the offender to stop leaning on the tank, the problem will inevitably return in the future. I'd use RTV silicone sealant as suggested by a few, but I would also address the issue by installing a "brace" between the back of the tank and the wall such as a 2" x 4" to limit the flexing to a minimum. It would be easy to do when you unbolt the tank to reseal it.

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: bruckus] #4749428
05/06/18 03:31 PM
05/06/18 03:31 PM
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,053
Idaho
CT8 Offline
CT8  Offline
Joined: Oct 2014
Posts: 12,053
Idaho
Originally Posted By: bruckus
I did silicone around my bolts at one time. Last winter I decided to replace our old toilets with comfort height,elongated and 1.28 gallon Kohlers. Wish we would of did it sooner. The flush is great and they are way more comfortable.
I replaced my toilets 3 years ago with low flush volume toilets and they flush great . If in the budjet I also recommend new toilets.


2015 Ford F150 2.7
2018 Ford F350 6.2
Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749470
05/06/18 04:34 PM
05/06/18 04:34 PM
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 98
Pennsylvania
bugeye Offline
bugeye  Offline
Joined: Apr 2015
Posts: 98
Pennsylvania
Careful with the new low flow toilets. The lack of water flow may not carry the paper through the drain piping. Old cast iron is rough inside as compared to the plastic. Multiple flushes help. Otherwise, plan on snaking the drains.

Re: Toilet Leak Question [Re: SWS] #4749503
05/06/18 05:27 PM
05/06/18 05:27 PM
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 302
Maryland
walterjay Offline
walterjay  Offline
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 302
Maryland
If silicone does not work, you probably have a hairline crack in the tank.

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