My toilet bowl will not hold water. If I fill the bowl manually I can flush it but the water goes completely down and won't refill on its own. The tank refills fine,I can see water going into the bowl but it drains out as fast as it goes in. There is also a gurgling sound as it drains out. Any help?

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    Possibly a clogged vent stack, causing the drain to siphon everything out of the trap. If you have a septic system, check that the waste line is above the tank's water level, as that also might cause siphoning. Aug 29, 2016 at 13:32

1 Answer 1


As Carl noted above, if a pipe/system cannot pull fresh air in as water fills up the pipe on it's way out, a siphoning affect is created which can pull the water out of the 'u bend' in the toilet during a flush.

The vent is usually the last or highest part in the system. Look for the pipe outside as it vents into fresh air, usually through the roof or on an outside wall (in the UK at least).

It's a bit rare for a vent to get blocked though (birds and animals occasionally) as the pipe normally only has air in it! It's possible the pipe is blocked where the bottom of the vent pipe joins the sewer pipe (if the pipe gets backed up or such like).


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