How to fix a Toto or Kohler toilet flush: 4 Easy Steps

There are many reasons a toilet flush may not be working properly. There are 2 scenarios: there is no water coming out at all or the toilet is flushing very slowly. Here are some helpful tips on how to fix a toilet that won’t flush well. Let’s get this fixed.


There is no water coming out

If it only happens once, wait 15 seconds before flushing again. It takes some time to fill the tank. It is possible that there was just a delay or that the flush was stuck. If the toilet is not flushing properly, we can take the following steps:

1) Turn off the water source to stop it from running again. This is done by turning the valve next to the toilet or in the toilet tank.

2) Open the toilet tank. This is easy to do for toilets that are floor-mounted (see the video above). Wall-mounted toilets can be harder to open as you have to remove several plastic pieces. It can be a good idea to take pictures so that you know how to reinstall it afterward. This is discussed below:

3) Once it is open, you can check the tank

-If there is no water in the water tank, there might be a problem with the water source. Check if other appliances in your house have water or not. It is possible that a valve inside the house has been closed so that the toilet doesn’t get water.  If your toilet is the only item that doesn’t get water, you might have to call your plumber. There can be dirt in the pipes that block the water flow. In the meantime, you can use a bucket with water to flush the toilet. 

– If there is water in the tank, you can clean it. Remove any objects or materials blocking the water flow

4) Once you have cleaned the toilet tank, you can check the toilet flapper. This is a rubber piece that gets pulled up when you flush and lets the water flow. After you have flushed, the flapper drops again and blocks water. It is possible that this piece needs to be replaced.

It is also possible that the connection with the flush has broken. Just buy a new flapper and install it. Make sure that you get one that fits with your toilet as there are several sizes available.  If the flapper breaks, you can buy a new one and replace it yourself. In the meantime, you’ll need to stop the water flow by turning off the water source or using your hand to do so. If the toilet won’t flush with any other methods, then you should replace your flapper.

Replacing a flapper is quite straightforward

Step 1: turn off the water source. This valve is often positioned next to the toilet or in the toilet tank. Simply turn it counterclockwise.

Step 2: Remove any objects or materials blocking the water flow

Step 3: Unscrew (or unclip) and remove the old flapper

Step 4: Screw on the new flapper

Step 5: Test the flapper and close the toilet tank.

If this fixed your problem, you can close the toilet tank again and you should be good to go. It is a great idea to clean your toilet tank every year so that it remains clean. If these steps didn’t work, it might be time to call a plumber.

Below is an example of a flapper. Check the model of your toilet to make sure that it fits.

 There is some water coming out but very slowly

This can have multiple causes as well: 

-The toilet is dirty. You might have to remove the toilet

-The toilet tank is dirty.

-The flapper is broken

-The flushing system is broken or needs to be adjusted.

–The water supply is broken

Let’s diagnose the problem and see how we can fix it step by step:

1) Shut off the water supply. This is often a valve next to the toilet. It might be in the toilet tank as well.

2) Flush once and see if enough water is being added to the tank. If the water is added very slowly, you might have to call a plumber if the main valve is still open. It will keep making noise for a long time after you have flushed as the tank is filling very slowly.

 3) You can clean the toilet tank and check if the flapper moves up and down when you flush. It is possible that the connection between the flapper and the flush has broken

4) It is also possible that there is dirt in the toilet itself. After about 10 years calcium and dirt can accumulate in the toilet. You can take the toilet off and clean it. Alternatively, you might want to install a new toilet. Be careful when you do this though as toilets can break when you drop them. Also, when you reinstall the toilet, make sure that it is done properly as it can cause leaks. For most people, calling a plumber to do this for you is the best idea.

You can use a bucket with water to flush the toilet while you are waiting for the plumber to show up. Just pour the water into the toilet and the toilet will get cleaned. 

As you can see, plumbing can get quite complex and there are several items that can cause issues. In this post, we have discussed how you can fix the flush of the toilet. If you are lucky, it was just a jammed key and you can get it loose (or can fix it by replacing the plastic panel). If you are unlucky, you might need to take the toilet off and clean it. This is a lot of work and quite difficult to do. Therefore you have to know your limits and call a plumber when you get stuck. A broken toilet can cause a lot of damage so it is best to make sure that you get it looked at quite soon. 

You can do a lot of repairs yourself but be careful. If you don’t know what you are doing, it is possible that you will break things and that it will cost more money to repair. It might annoy the plumber if you break something and they have to repair it.

Toilet flushes are quite easy to use. Be careful that you don’t push them too hard though. Toilet buttons are often made out of plastic and can break if you put too much pressure on them. You also shouldn’t press two buttons at the same time as they can get stuck. Replacing a toilet flush can be quite easy but it s better to avoid problems. If you flush correctly, the toilet flush should last a long time. After a few years, you might have to replace some parts though. Luckily you have learned how to do this in this post.