Saturday, March 14, 2009

Behold, And Tremble: For I Am The Destroyer Of Porcelain



Thursday, I replaced the flapper valve in a toilet because it wouldn't stay open more than a second or two. Turning the shut-off valve disrupted the old, rotted seals, so that water was running out around the vavle stem. This led to a small pond in the bathroom and basement, so I had to shut off the entire house's water supply. Squeezing myself into the six inches of space between the toilet and wall, I unscrewed the old valve, managing to slice off a nice piece of skin via the large burr on the back of the valve I hadn't seen. Now there was blood and water all over the floor. Off to the store, where I bought a new valve, and adaptors for the different size threads. Install the new valve, and test the toilet. The new water line valve, perfect. The new flapper valve, sucks as much as the old one. Yesterday, attempt another new flapper valve. Works pretty good, but it's getting pulled out of alignment by the chain. Attempt to adjust alignment by bending the bar linking toilet handle to the flapper chain; break bar in half. Stop for the day before smashing toilet in frustration. Today, go buy new handle and bar. Attempt to remove nut holding handle on, and strip the nut with closest fitting socket wrench. Move to locking pliers,which starts to move nut....and rest of fixture, fracturing toilet tank. Quit before stroking out. Tomorrow, shop for entire new toilet due to crappy $1.99 part. Hope that floor doesn't collapse or new toilet spontaneously explodes during installation.

6 comments:

jon spencer said...

Did you forget that most toilet handles have left hand threads?

jon spencer said...

Forgot to add the next question.
Or was the handle nut fused tight to the threads?

MauserMedic said...

Caught the the thread reversal, but it was fused. Age and hard water have apparently made it impossible to turn. Even after the porcelain broke and I didn't have to be careful I couldn't get it to turn. Next time I work on something like that I'm just going to use a cutting wheel to slice the nut in half. Lesson learned.

TD said...

Ah, the joys of plumbing projects. Even the simplest ones seem to require 2 or 3 trips to the hardware store.

The Suburban Bushwacker said...

Probably too late to help you now, but it might help anyone who reads this afterwards. Always fit a service valve - then you can isolate the toilet to work on the flapper valve without having to drain the system down.
SBW

Anonymous said...

i love the toilet it is better than anything i can make :).