Toilet basics

No, I'm not talking about potty training.
What I mean is what are some of the basics for toilet maintenance and toilet replacement?
Let's say my toilet gets poor flush performance, what affects that? Does the tank plumbing affect how the toilet performs? Can I save money in water costs by replacing the plumbing inside the tank, or is that totally related to how the toilet was designed?
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Eigenvector wrote:

Generally maintenance is cleaning it and fixing what fails after it fails.

It can be design, or a build up preventing it from functioning as designed. Sometimes mineral deposits clog the holes under the rim and you may need to clean them or if that blue stuff was used in the tank, it is a likely suspect.

I am not sure exactly what you mean, but no mater the answer is yes, but maybe not the yes you think. Could you be more specific?

Only if it is leaking. You can't do much to improve water usage by changing something in the tank. The design of the tank really needs to work with the design of the bowl.
Hint: When shopping for a toilet look for a large (2 inch or larger) trap and make sure the trap is fully glazed.
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Joseph Meehan

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By "plumbing" I mean the flaps, valves, floats, seals, flusher handle - that sort of stuff.
There is someone in this group who typically answers questions about toilets with a "Get the <mumble> superflush 9000 valve for the tank" That lead me to ask whether or not the valves, and flappers inside the tank affect how a toilet work - whether it will make the toilet "better". But if the rest of your comments are correct it sounds like the overall toilet design affects that more than actual plumbing inside the tank.
My toilet gets pretty terrible performance, it uses a lot of water per flush, doesn't get all the TP down the drain, but otherwise works just fine. Since I'm on septic I was wondering if there was a way to improve the efficiency of the toilet or if replacing it is the best alternative assuming water conservation is my goal.

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Eigenvector wrote:

The easiest, and most satisfying, solution to poor flushing is to change your diet to all/mostly meat (yum!). This results in a higher percentage of "sinkers" as opposed to the "floaters" resulting from a diet high in fiber, fruits, and vegetables.
Remember, vegetables are not food. Vegetables are what food eats.
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Try flushing your poor flush toilet with a bucket of water!
If it flushes bad its a drain issue for SURE.... get out the snake..
If it flushes good with a bucket then come back here and I will explain the problem the 5 buck 15 minute easy fix along with a link to the last person who had the water just swirls and doesnt flush good problem, and had success with my fix:)
newer low flow toilets which it appears yours isnt can be a bad design issue....
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Well I poured 2 quarts of water in the bowl and the bowl drained out. When I flushed the exit hole farted then flushed normally.
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Eigenvector wrote:

try it with some ahhh effluent solids:)
If it flushes good then the bowl rim and inner passages are sluged up. sediment hard water clogs the inside passages:(
Easily fixed heres a link from a old thread post number 11 said it was miraclous
http://groups.google.com/group/alt.home.repair/browse_frm/thread/366e89c8a7b42308/23d4efa0a6cc9aba?hl=en#23d4efa0a6cc9aba
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http://groups.google.com/group/alt.home.repair/browse_frm/thread/366e89c8a7b42308/23d4efa0a6cc9aba?hl=en#23d4efa0a6cc9aba
Hmm, I'll give it another go with some solids. If no grace I'll look into the Muratic acid treatment. I'm on the cusp of just going to a GOOD low flush toilet rather than much with the current crapper, although this one isn't a bad unit. My fear is that the modern low flush toilets will all have that same scrawny small bowl that makes me feel like I'm sitting on a waste pit all scrunched up. I like the older designs because they're roomy.
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Eigenvector wrote: ..

You can get a new one with lots of room. You may not see them at your local DIY store as they tend to stock only the cheap models and maybe some fancy looking expensive ones, but they seldom stock top line basic models that work well and don't cost as much as the expensive ones they have.
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Nice thing about being in the Seattle Metroplex is that I have access to Home Despot, Lowe's, McClendon's, Ace, and more than a few specialty houses. But I don't want to go down that road unless I really have to. No reason to swap out a perfectly working unit once I determine if the flush issue is fixable.
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Try muriatic acid BEFORE tossing your toilet. Ours is a low flow model we keep plunger close by at all times:(
Acid WORKS SO GOOD its amazing. I have used it on friends toilets, pittsburgh has very hard water....
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Eigenvector wrote: ...

I like Seattle. My girlfriend is from Centralia down the road.
I agree. No need to change it out if you can get it working and frankly I believe you can.
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Eigenvector wrote:

More than you ever wanted to know can be found here:
http://www.toiletology.com/index.shtml
Jeff
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Jeffry Wisnia
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Don't know of any basic web sites, but I'd look at your local home improvement store and get a book that has what you want. The inside tank plumbing can be important. You can save water costs by adjusting how high the water fills the tank on a refill. All are adjustable this way.
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