Leaky Toilet problem

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    • #275331
      Avatar photoAsanga Kumara


        I am not a plumber but thought this task would be easy enough to fix with my Home Depot book.

        I was getting a leak every time I flushed at the seat area where the tank and the seat meet.

        I talked to some people about it and they suggested replacing the gasket, that it might be dried and crackeed.

        I went to Home Depot and got a replacement gasket and some new screws.

        I took the tank off. I took the old gasket off.
        I put in the new gasket and the new screws and reattached everything. When I turned on the water there were leaks coming out near the bottom of the tank where the nuts to the screws are attached.

        When I noticed this I tightened the screws more. This did not fix it.

        Inside the tank I have a rubber washer and then a metal washer and then the bolt head.
        Underneath where the bolt comes out I have first another rubber washer then a metal washer then the hex nut.

        I called Home Depot and they said the tank is probably cracked.

        So now I guess I need to get another tank. So here’s another problem: The toilet tank is a Sterling and I was told they are no longer in business. I called a local plumbing supply shop and gave them what I thought was the model number of the Sterling tank (On the back inside of the tank is the branded number 4515-DB along with some other numbers. I have two other identical Sterling toilets and that is the only common number so I assume that is the model number.) However the plumbing supply shop couldn’t locate the Sterling tank based on that number. She told me Kohler bought Sterling and she sells Kohler and they may have old Sterling tanks around.

        Is that the model number?
        Is it possible to get a Sterling tank?

        The gasket that I took off seemed a lot better then the ones I could get at Home Depot. The one I took off had rubber pieces that went up into the screw holes.

        What do you think caused the leak in the first place?

        Why did I have a leak after I put the screws in?

        Is there any other way to see if the tank is cracked? Does it make sense that the tank would be cracked?

        Am I going to have to replace the entire toilet?

        I thought this would be a good learning project for me and it has turned into a mess.. though I’d like to keep doing it myself..



      • #291720
        Avatar photoRobert Stephen Morton

          Edcat. There have been an iunfinite number of sitcoms & advertisements depicting this very same scenario, the end result would be to call a licensed plumber, it is very cheap insurance, and if there are problems you blame the plumber!

        • #291721
          Avatar photoGuest

            Home Depot strikes again

          • #291722
            Avatar photoedcat

              So I guess I can’t get any real information out of anyone?

            • #291723
              Avatar photokerryedwards1

                I live in Denver. There is a used plumbing supply store here. That is the first place I would turn. It wouldn’t surprise me if there is a similar supplier in your area.

              • #291724
                Avatar photofourth year

                  Remove the washers between the rubber washer and the bolt heads. They are the reason for the leak.

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