Another day, another five or more flushes of the toilet. For a larger family, maybe even fifteen or twenty flushes.
In most cases, nothing unusual happens after the flush, but in certain situations, we may face a dreadful inconvenience: the water stops short, remaining low in our toilet bowl. The problem becomes very real if we can’t thoroughly flush the toilet, as the smells and bacteria may develop in such an environment.
In this article, we will discuss some of the most important reasons why a toilet bowl doesn’t fill up with water, thus leaving the water level low. We will also offer some possible solutions to this problem.
But before we jump to that, here’s a short checklist of issues to exclude before the more serious can diagnostics begin.
Before you jump to diagnosing more severe issues in your toilet, make sure that some of the following conditions are met.
- The bathroom water is working properly. If the water supply in the bathroom is compromised, this may be the answer to the question, “why isn’t my toilet bowl filling up with water.”
- Check whether the shut-off valve is triggered, thus closing the water flow into the bowl.
If both of these conditions are satisfied, proceed with further diagnostics.
Why Is My Toilet Bowl Not Filling Up With Water
Let’s look into why the toilet bowl won’t fill up with water.
Toilet Tank Problem
Toilet tank malfunction is probably one of the simplest potential causes to address. Usually, the problem hides either in the fill valve (the ballcock) or the flapper.
The fill valve is responsible for water levels in the tank. If its parts are broken or poorly aligned, the tank may not be filling properly, thus causing the low water level in the toilet bowl.
On the other hand, the flapper’s role is to drain the water from the tank and into the bowl, so if there is something wrong with the flapper, the bowl may not be filling up to its usual level.
Full or Partial Clog
When it comes to toilet problems, the clog is a classic. It usually appears in the internal pipes, causing the toilet water to overflow. However, there are cases when this blockage actually takes the water out of the bowl, thus lowering its levels.
If there is a partial block, try to observe how the toilet flushes. If it gets all the way up and then slowly runs out, leaving just a little bit of water on the bottom, it’s probably a partial clogging issue.
Cracked Toilet Bowl or Pipes
Take a close look at your bowl and pipes and search for any possible cracks. Consider calling the plumber or visiting the nearest toilet repair shop if you identify some. If there are broken parts, you’ll likely need a professional pair of hands to help you with this problem.
Clogged Inlet Holes
Inlet holes or rim jets are holes located at the rim of your toilet. They can be found beneath the rim in case you want to inspect them. If the tap water quality is not very good, it may calcify in the bowl, which can cause the low water levels.
Vent Pipes Blockage
Blockages in the sewer vent pipes can cause malfunctions in the toilets as sewer gases and oxygen flows into the waste pipes. As the pipes ‘seek’ another outlet in your home to let the air out, your toilet may produce loud, strange sounds.
The blockage often occurs on the house roof since that’s where the vent is. Many environmental factors may obstruct the vent, such as birds nesting, leaves piling up, and so on. Strong winds can affect the toilet bowl water levels via vents if you live in a windy area.
How to Deal With a Low Level of Water in the Toilet Bowl
While none of the reasons listed are very pleasant to deal with, most gave fairly simple solutions you can employ.
We will now explain how to deal with each of the problems listed above.
Fixing the Toilet Tank
Fixing the toilet tank is simple and easy. One thing you can do is to adjust the valve if it’s misplaced, and the other is to replace broken parts if there are any. Simply look inside the tank and check if the valve or the flapper is broken. If both the valve and flapper look good, try adjusting the valve and then flush to test. If this doesn’t solve the issue, you may need to replace the flapper.
Fixing the Full or Partial Clog
When it comes to fixing the clog, the solution is pretty straightforward: you need to remove it using gloves, a plunger, or an auger. In case of deep blockage, call a professional.
Fixing a Cracked Toilet Bowl
If the toilet bowl or the pipes are cracked, you will want to call for professional help, as this requires special kinds of tools, skills, and knowledge.
Fixing the Clogged Inlet Holes
The best way to fix a clogged inlet hole is to heat up some vinegar and pour it into the tank through the tube. Leave to soak for a few hours, as this will help the calcium deposits dissolve.
Then, take an old toothbrush and scrub off the remaining calcium deposits. If necessary, you can also take a small wire to clear out the inside holes. Flush to check whether the situation has improved.
Fixing the Vent Blockage
The most common cause of blockage in the vent pipes is debris that prevents the air from freely flowing through the system. If this is the cause of low toilet water levels in your bowl, you first need to clean up the debris and then consider investing in a vent cover. This will prevent plants and animals from blocking the vent in the future.
Climbing up on the roof by yourself is not exactly the safest thing to do, so you’ll either want to have someone to assist you on this project or call a professional to finish the job.
While having low water levels in your toilet is unpleasant, the good news is that it’s not too much of a hassle to deal with it. However, if you’re dealing with cracked bowls, pipes, or vent blockages, it’s better to call for professional help.
Regular maintenance of the toilet by cleaning, using blockage-preventative chemicals, and being careful about what you flush down your toilet can help you avoid unpleasant toilet bowl scenarios, this one included.
Find out more about low water levels in your toilet bowl in this short informative video!