Is the Toilet Leaking?

You walk into your bathroom and discover water on the floor near your toilet. The first thing you wonder is my toilet leaking?

The water could have come from somewhere else and settled there. It may be condensation from cold water filling the tank or you may have a leaking or cracked toilet.

Unless you have a cracked bowl or tank, there are basically four locations where a toilet will leak from.

  1. The first is from the lid, if the fill valve or the bowl fill tube are not working properly, they can spray water onto the lid, where it will work its way out.
  2. The second is the water line  connection to the fill valve or the seal of the fill valve to the tank.
  3. The third is where the tank connects to the bowl, this can be the flush valve seals or the tank hold down bolt gaskets.
  4. And the fourth is where the toilet connects to the floor, which is sealed with a wax ring.

Check to see if the toilet rocks on the floor or if the tank rocks on the bowl. These will be quick signs that things aren’t right in those locations.

Here are the steps to do to determine if it is indeed the toilet.

  • Clean up any water that is present on the floor.
  • Wipe down the entire toilet.
  • With a paper towel or thin dry rag, wipe down the toilet slowly, starting from the top of the tank, checking regularly for moisture on your towel.
  • If you did not find any moisture on the first pass, flush the toilet and check again.

Once you find moisture, it is time to look at the area where it was found to determine the cause of the leak.

If you find moisture on the tank it could be condensation from cold water filling the tank or it could be leaking from under the lid.

If water is found coming from under the lid, remove the lid. Check that the bowl fill tube is in place, it is the small hose that is attached to the center tube (flush valve). If it in place, flush the toilet and check to see if water is spraying from the top the fill valve (the tower to the left or right of the tank). If so you will need to replace the fill valve. See our article on


If the water is found coming from the connection between the tank and the bowl. You will need to replace the rubber flush valve seal that seals the valve to the bowl.  For guidance on doing this, See our article on

If you determine that moisture is seeping from under the bowl, you will need to replace the wax seal that is under the toilet where it meets the waste line in the floor. For guidance see our article on


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