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Apparently my original toilet valves were cheap because they both had problems and I replaced both with fluidmaster valves some years ago.

Two problems were apparent immediately which I solved:

  1. The chain had enough length to tangle around the flush arm when flushed quickly.
  2. The anti-leak grabby thing needs slack in the chain so that the weight of the chain will make it hold and the tank won't top-off.

Making the chain shorter left no slack to weight the grabby hook thing so it disabled the anti-leak. To address both of these issues I added a metal washer to the chain to give it a little weight. This seemed to solve these two issues.

Here is the issue

After the switch I noticed that if it has been more than a few hours since the last flush the tank fills instead of flushing. So the anti-leak feature has probably saved me a ton in water cost over time. Once the tank fills the flush works normally.

It was a manageable annoyance, but now as my 19 mo old son is going to be potty training I want to teach him the proper one-flush way of doing things.

Is this going to be a flapper issue? I can't afford a plumber.

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There is a simple test to verify a bad flapper. Put some food dye in the tank water, then wait an hour or so. Check the bowl water. If the water is colored, you have a leaky flapper. –  Tester101 Feb 13 '13 at 16:41
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FYI for those not familiar with the fluidmaster: The fluidmaster prevents the fill valve from running, unless the toilet has been flushed. If you have a leaky flapper, all the water will flow out of the tank, but the tank will not be refilled. –  Tester101 Feb 13 '13 at 16:44
    
I am not sure I have food coloring. I will look for some. I suppose I can use one of those Mio water flavor drops just as easily. –  lazfish Feb 15 '13 at 22:42
    
You can use flavor drops, but then you'll have to taste the water to verify the leak. You should be able to find food coloring at any grocery store, usually with the baking / cake decorating supplies. –  Tester101 Feb 16 '13 at 14:06
    
LOL. Mio drops change your water color just like Kool-aid. My toilet was full of pink water so I know it is the flapper. No toilet tasting. –  lazfish Feb 16 '13 at 19:59

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