How to Recognize It's Time to Buy a New Toilet.

Day after day, flush after flush, countless gallons of water run through your toilet, eventually eroding the rubber seals, flushing mechanism, and even the porcelain bowl. Toilets are usually solid and long-lasting items, so a repair is usually enough to get things functioning properly. Nevertheless, if your toilet is several decades old and showing signs of noticeable damage, a replacement may be best. Here are eight hints that you need a new toilet.

Continuous Clogging.

No one likes seeing a backed up or clogged toilet, but this is one of the most frequent problems a toilet can have. The occasional clog is to be expected, but if you have an older low-flow toilet, you might have to plunge it every couple of flushes. You may even have learned to flush twice as a clog-prevention solution, resulting in higher water usage bills. Feel comfortable that modern low-flow toilets seldom suffer from random stoppages. The promise of a dependable toilet could be enough to prompt you to replace it.

Cracks and Leaks

If you observe any water pooling around the toilet, don't wait to act. Failing to promptly address this problem could bring about 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 fasten the fixture to the floor or changing the wax ring underneath the toilet base. On the other hand, if the leak is caused by a cracked bowl or tank, the only option is to replace the toilet.

High Water Use

Low-flow toilets have been utilized in new home construction or as a replacement product since the early 90s, but your dated toilet could easily predate the Energy Policy Act of 1992. This is when the gallon-per-flush (gpf) limit for residential toilets was reduced to 1.6 gpf. If so, you could substantially lower your water usage (and thus save money each month on your utility bills) by switching your old 3- to 5-gpf toilet with a modern 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 wash away liquid waste.

Wobbly Base

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 cure the problem without changing the toilet. But, if the subfloor is decayed and shifting beneath the toilet’s weight, this requires professional attention. After repairing the structural issues, it may be necessary to replace the toilet to prevent a recurrence.

Increased Mineral Buildup

Hard water can create problems for your toilet, because the water contains minerals that clog the inlet holes and siphon tubes as time goes by. If you keep up with preventive maintenance, you may be able to keep mineral buildup under control. It’s also possible to clear some existing deposits by carefully chipping away at them. But if the accumulation gets bad enough, your toilet may not flush effectively, making it more prone to clogs. When this happens, that's a sign to replace your toilet.

Leaky Tank

It’s usually worth repairing (not replacing) your toilet tank the first few times it leaks. In the end, adjusting a stuck float or replacing a worn-out flapper valve is simple and affordable. But if the leak continuously returns, there might be a larger underlying problem. This may be the logical time to replace your old, outdated toilet.

Poor Aesthetics

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 merit replacing your toilet.

Numerous Repairs

Toilets are simple mechanisms that should operate smoothly without concern. If you end up calling the plumber regularly to deal with clogs, leaks and damaged tank parts, it's time to make a switch. Put your money toward a new, reliable toilet, and you won’t have to stress about repairs for several years.

Schedule Toilet Repair or Replacement

It can't hurt to try a toilet repair before investing in a whole-new toilet. Our well- trained plumbers at Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning will look over your bathroom fixture thoroughly and recommend the most cost-effective solution. Keep in mind, replacing your old, worn-out toilet with a high-efficiency model helps reduce your water bills for plenty of years to come. If you opt for a replacement, our team can help you pick and install your new toilet for optimal performance going forward. For more information or to schedule a visit from a qualified plumber, please connect with a Service Experts office near you.

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