Just like your car, the search for the right toilet part begins by identifying the manufacturer and model number. Search for the manufacturer’s name on the bottom side of the water tank lid. It may be stamped into the lid or painted there. Then, remove the tank lid, and place it carefully on the floor. You’ll find your four-digit model number located on the back of the tank, near the water level mark.
The most common manufacturers are Kohler, American Standard, TOTO, Duravit, Swiss Madison, Gerber, Cotto, Niagara Conservation, Woodbridge, and Saniflo.
Common Toilet Tank Parts
While there are some differences in how your toilet may have been made depending on the manufacturer and the specific model, you will find the most common versions include the parts depicted in the graphic diagram below:
- Toilet Handle – the exterior tank lever starts the flushing process.
- Cistern Tank – houses the flushing parts and stores the water that flushes the toilet.
- Toilet Tank Lid – covers the top of the cistern tank.
- Rubber Flapper – envelops the opening at the bottom of the tank where water runs out to the toilet bowl when flushed. The flapper is a common point of toilet malfunction.
- Fill Valve – regulates the water entering the tank to refill it after a flush. It also simultaneously dispatches water to the toilet bowl at the same time.
- Fill Float – the mechanism that triggers the fill valve to turn on. The float sits on top of the water, when the water level recedes (such as when you flush), the float drops with it, pulling down on the lever that turns on the fill valve.
- Flush Lever and Chain – attach to the inside of the external flushing mechanism. The other end of the chain pulls up on the rubber flapper as you push down to flush. With the flapper open, water rushes out of the tank and into the bowl, using gravity to flush the bowl.
- Overflow Tube – as the tank refills, some water escapes through the overflow tube and into the toilet bowl since the water levels are low in both the tank and the bowl after a flush. If the water level gets too high, the overflow tube directs it out of the tank, so it won’t spill and cause water damage.
Toilet Bowl and Seat Parts
The components of a toilet bowl are built into the structure, don’t have any moving parts, and are not likely to be the issue for do-it-yourself repair. They include:
Flapper Valve Gasket – The union between the tank and the bowl.
Rim Holes – Tiny holes along the rim where water is propelled to rinse the sidewalls of the toilet bowl.
Siphon Jet – A large water jet located along the rim that flushes the water through the main trapway.
Trapway – Route the water travels through the bottom portion of the toilet before it enters the toilet trap.
Outlet – The base of the toilet bowl where the toilet flange joins the floor plumbing.
Toilet Flange – A rubber ring that connects to the drainpipe and mounts the toilet to the floor.
The toilet seat consists of just 5 easily recognizable parts which are simple to replace. They are:
Lid – Covers toilet seat and prevents objects from falling into the toilet.
Seat – Connects to the bowl and is where the user of the toilet sits.
Hinges – Connect to the toilet allowing the seat and lid to move up and down.
Bolts – Hold the hinges.
Bolt Covers – Plastic pieces that cover the bolts to prevent them from getting wet.
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