Do you hear water leaking noisew at night? Are you worried that a constant sound of running water (the same sound you hear after flushing) means high water bill? What about when your Champion 4 Toilet flushes all by itself in the middle of the night?
At this point, you are mind is probably going crazy with the thoughts of:
- Toilet water is somehow leaking below the bathroom, possibly causing thousands of dollars in damage
- All those ghost flushes will jack up your water bill
- You will have to replace the innards of a toilet or replace the entire toilet which will cost time and money
Well, all those could be true but I think a simple fix with a $5-10 dollar replacement part may solve your problems related to:
- Intermittently / randomly running toilet
- Ghost flushing
- Failed flush valve seal
- Long tank refill time
In this article, I will show you exactly what you need to buy and perform simple steps to make this flushing problem go away.
- Purchase either American Standard Toilet Flush Valve Seal Kit ($10) or Fluidmaster Toilet Flush Valve Seal for American Standard Champion 4 toilet ($5).
- $10 part comes with extra parts (O-ring for the shaft which will be handy to have in the future); $5 part just comes with a valve seal
- OPTIONAL but recommended: American Standard Champion Toilet Chain Assembly
- OPTIONAL but recommended: American Standard Champion Toilet Clevis Pin Assembly (note: It is NOT called a “Levis Pin Assembly”!)
- Rubber gloves
- Rag / hand soap
- STEP #1 – Turn off the water supply (shutoff valve from wall is usually located on the lower left side of the toilet)
- STEP #2– How down the flush lever to drain as much as possible from the tank
- STEP #3 – Remove the tank lid (brown stain indicates mineral build up from water)
- STEP #4 – un-clip the cotter pin (in my case a wire tie) then remove the chain “bucket” holder and clevis pin from the flush lever; store these tiny parts in a zip lock bag or small tray away from the work area;
- STEP #5 – Gently lift up the chain so that you can place your hand below the piston assembly
- STEP #6– Remove the thumbscrew cap by turning it counter-clockwise
- STEP #7 – Remove the thumbscrew cap and piston top cover
- STEP #8 – Gently lower the bottom piston cover by removing your hand
- STEP #9 – Because my water contains lots of minerals (a.k.a. “hard” water), submerged rubber components tend to degrade fast. The OEM gasket seems like it is made from open cell foam core whereas the one from Fluidmaster is more “rubberized”. Note the original color of the gasket from underside where it was not submerged in water
- STEP #10 – Fluidmaster part had grooves on the inner ring side so you can install it without worrying about the correct side being up. Grab some paper towel and wipe the inside of the piston seat to remove any build up
- STEP #11– Once you install the new replacement gasket, you can reinstall the piston top cover. You will need to align four “tabs” to ensure that both top and bottom piston covers are mated properly.
- STEP #12 – Reinstall the thumbscrew cap by turning the cap clockwise. Turn until you hear a click noise, then turn again until you hear the second click noise. TIP: If you stop at the first click, the seal will NOT BE TIGHT and will cause your toilet to ghost flush again!
- STEP #13 – Reinstall the chain and clevis pin assembly. TIP: in order to maintain tension in the chain, you need to ensure that the open slit on the chain bucket faces to the right side of the tank. If the opening slit face the left side of tank, the chain will frequently pop off
- STEP #14 – turn the water back on and observe; you should not hear any slow dripping sounds
This work only took about 30 minutes to complete. I am happy to report to you that ghost flushing is no more!