Am a newbie homeowner and trying to learn. Apologies if this has already been asked before. I was not sure if my situation is different.

First problem - I have a tank bolt leak from one side of the toilet. So to try to tighten it and hopefully stop the leak, I shut off the water under the toilet with a wrench after some struggle. That led to...

Second problem - After shutoff the FluidMaster fill valve works properly and no water comes out of it after flushing. However the tank slowly fills up with water over the course of 30 mins to an hour.

Is the tank filling due to the shutoff valve not completely shutting off water?

Am I dealing with water coming from bowl to tank??

The shutoff valve looks like a gate valve and my wrench has slightly bent the valve head. Am I better off replacing the shutoff valve with a ball valve?


Shutoff valve with slightly bent handle in off position Tank with no water coming out of Fill valve as expected

1 Answer 1


Water is not magically flowing up-hill from the bowl to the tank...

It is almost certain that the shut-off valve is not... shutting off.

Consider the design. My experience is that the type of valve pictured uses a rubber washer as the sealing surface.

In most applications, a tap (sink, tub, garden hose) carries flowing water rarely. The rubber seal spends most of its life sealing off static water, whose oxygen is quickly depleted.

In a shut-off valve, the reverse is true. Fresh, oxygenated water is constantly flowing over the washer. As the surface of the washer deteriorates, the ability to seal against the seat vanishes.

But the shut-off valve isn't used, so the problem remains invisible.

Until the day it's needed, as in your case.

There's no guarantee that the next shut-off upstream won't fail the same way. I've had to call the City to shut off my water service at the water main, so I could replace the main shut-off, the hot water tank shut-off, and the kitchen hot-water supply shut-off...

And then change the faucet cartridge...

  • Thanks! I can’t vote on it yet. But hopefully others find this helpful. I decided to swap out both the shutoff valve (w/a quarter turn valve) and the tank bolts. Will post results once it is actually done.
    – Frank
    Commented Oct 10, 2017 at 21:51

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