How A Novice DIYer Can Change The Plastic Handle On A Toilet

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Toilet handles aren't always made like they used to be. Some newer plastic handles have a tendency to break after a while and you'll need to replace it to get your toilet working again – unless you want to keep on dipping your hand into the water tank to grab the chain connected to the flapper (which sits on the drain that allows the water to flush down into the toilet bowl) and pull it up to flush the toilet. Here is how you can replace the plastic handle on your toilet even if you don't have any plumbing experience.

What You Will Need:

  • New Handle
  • Adjustable Wrench
  • Small Flathead Screwdriver

Remove Old Handle

The first thing you need to do is remove the broken parts of the old handle. The handle arm that is connected to the flapper chain is removed by sliding the small cotter pin out of the chain that connects the chain to the handle – you may need a small screwdriver to help push the cotter pin through the chain since it's very hard to do with just your fingers. Make sure you notice to which hole in the arm (there are usually several of them) the chain was connected. Take the arm and set it aside. The push handle is typically screwed into place with a large plastic nut that you can reach on the inside of the tank. Loosen the nut with an adjustable wrench and unscrew with your fingers. You should take the push handle and arm with you to the hardware or plumbing supply store.

New Handle

The handles for many toilets are custom-made by the individual manufacturers and one size typically does not fit all toilets. The handle arms can have different curves that make one handle difficult to use if it's not the one specifically designed for your toilet – so make sure you match up the handle parts to the new handle to make sure the curve is correct.

Install New Handle

Slide the arm of the handle through the handle opening in the toilet. Screw the handle into place and tighten with your adjustable wrench – do not tighten it too hard as you can easily break the plastic threads if you use too much force. Connect the chain to the same hole in the arm that it was connected to in the broken arm and replace the cotter pin. Push the handle down to make sure that everything works well and flapper lifts up so the water can flush down into the toilet bowl. If the flapper doesn't come up, you'll have to adjust the chain so it will pull up the flapper by placing the chains into a different hole, or by attaching the cotter pin to lower link on the chain.

If you need help, contact a professional like C J Plumbing & Heating to get your toilet back in working order. 

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26 March 2015

Learning All About Plumbing Materials

Hey everyone, my name is Marcell Robins. I am excited to share information about plumbing supplies on this site. Plumbing repair services caught my attention after a pipe burst during the last winter storm. The temperature dropped so quickly that we did not have time to prepare the home for the changes. As a result, one of the pipes running under the laundry room froze shut and popped open at the seams. When the water thawed, it started leaking like crazy beneath the house. It was at that point that I started to learn about the wide range of materials used for plumbing repairs. I want to share that knowledge with you to help everyone correctly maintain the plumbing components throughout their home. Thanks for coming to my website.