How to remove a hard plastic toilet flapper?

How to remove a hard plastic toilet flapper?

To remove a hard plastic toilet flapper you need:

  1. Turn of the main water shutoff valve
  2. Open the toilet tank by removing the top lid
  3. Find the flapper, disconnect the flapper chain from the flush lever, remove the flapper
  4. Install new flapper, connect the flapper chain to the flush lever

One of the most common problems that one might encounter in the household, specifically concerning the restroom, is a problem with toilet tank flapper. This can happen quite occasionally and once you know the signs of it, you can immediately tell you are dealing with toilet flapper. The common sign of toilet flappers issue is when the water continues to run after the flush cycle has been completed. Now if the sound might not bother you, but the amount of lost water which is usually lots of gallons might upset you, especially when you will receive your utility bill. Here is where the unfortunate surprise might be waiting you. But don’t worry toilet flapper is not a big issue and it can be fixed quite easily. For those who come across the name “ toilet flapper” for the first time, I would like to explain what it actually is.


how to remove a hard plastic toilet flapper


Toilet Flapper is a rubber seal that closes the flush valve to keep the water in the tank  and it opens up the valve once you press the handle to flush the toilet. Now you probably can understand why the water leaks from the bowl tank if the toilet flapper is not working properly.

How to change toilet flapper or how to adjust toilet flapper?

 First of all, to be able to identify if you need a new toilet flapper or you just need adjusting toilet flapper you need to identify what exactly is wrong. The best way to do so is to actually check it visually. So you encountered the problem of toilet water leaking even after the flush cycle. The first thing that you are going to do is to take off the cover of the tank of your toilet. You will see a flap valve made of plastic and soft rubber that is connected to the chain, that is the flapper you are actually looking for. If you flush the toilet, you will see that the chain will lift up the rubber flapper and the water will flush down into the toilet bowl. This is what we referred to previously to as the flush cycle. After all the water is flushed the flapper should ideally drop back and close the valve and the refilling of the toilet tank will start. However, when it does not happen and the flapper does not seat properly inside and does not properly close the valve, the water starts to leak. The bad thing about it, that the water will keep leaking until you attempt adjusting toilet flapper.

How to adjust toilet flapper?

1. Make sure that the rubber flapper is perfectly aligned so it seals the flushing valve. If the toilet flapper seat does not seem to be correct, make a readjustment yourself, by simply moving it a little bit, until you hear and see that the water stopped leaking down the toilet bowl.

2. Rubber flapper might get old and worn out, the same can happen to toilet flapper seal ring. In this case, you will need to consider replacing the toilet flapper. Keep reading the article to find out how to replace a toilet flapper.

3. Sometimes the flapper chain might be too long and it occasional might get stuck under the flapper. In this case, you should attempt shortening it a little bit.

Now that you know what the toilet flapper and how exactly it works, let’s proceed to instructions on how to change a toilet flapper.

How to change a toilet flapper?

 The tools you will require to proceed:

  • Rubber gloves
  • Bucket
  • Pliers
  • Towel/sponge
  • Rubber flapper and flapper chain

Step 1:

 You probably know this step yourself, if you attempted to do any plumbing work before. So the first thing you will need to do is to turn off the water supply by shutting off the shutoff valve water line leading to the toilet. It is really easy to locate it, as it is usually behind the toilet and connected to it. You will not miss it, but in case you are not sure, we are attaching the picture below for your reference. Turn the handle clockwise until the water completely stops. The next thing you want to do is to empty the toilet tank from the already existing water inside. So, flush down the toilet, in some cases, you will need to hold the flush handle until all the water is flushed (that really depends on your type of toilet).

toilets with our flappers

Step 2:

Now open the toilet tank by slowly removing the top lid, be sure to do it carefully not to drop or damage the lid. This is the time when you want to put your rubber gloves one, for hygienic purposes. Identify the flapper and disconnect the flapper chain from the flush lever. You will see a small clip on the top end of the chain that hooks right into holes on the lever. Remove the chain and let the chain drop, you will be replacing it anyways together with the new flapper. Remove the flapper.

Step 3:

Tip: If you are not sure which model of flapper you have, simply take the old flapper to the store with you and ask the sales assistant to get you the same one.

Now it is time to install the new flapper and flapper chain. There are different toilet bowl flappers and depending on the design the installation itself will be a little bit different.

Typically the flapper is attached to pegs that are on the sides of the flush valve. If this is your case that you will not need the ring on the back of the new flapper, simply remove it (be aware sometimes the flapper does not have it originally).

If you flush valve though does not come with pegs on the sides for the flapper then you will use the ring to slide the flapper into the place.

Step 4:

Install the new flapper by hooking the ears of the flapper into one of the pegs on the sides of the flush valve. Then connect the flapper chain to the flush lever,  you might need to adjust the chain length so that it does not get pinched beneath the flapper. Now you are set! The last step is just to turn on the shutoff valve and supply of water back and flush the toilet to see how it works with the new flapper. Congratulations you are all set!


The last question, we would like to highlight is how to replace toilet flapper American standard?

 For those who do not know, the American standard is a famous manufacturer brand of bathroom and toilet equipment. They have a lot of different flappers, however, the method of replacing the toilet flapper described above will fit all of them.


Hopefully, this article was of benefit to you, share it with your friends if you consider it to be valuable! Please, don’t hesitate to leave your comments below! Any feedback is highly appreciated.

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