bad toilet in bathroom

Signs of a Bad Toilet

Toilets, like every household appliance, do not last forever. Your toilet will probably last longer than your air central air conditioner, but it will eventually need to be replaced.

If you’ve had issues with your toilet recently and have needed more than a plunger to fix it, it might be time to start considering replacing your toilet. The plumbers at Heartland Heating, Air, and Plumbing explain the typical signs of a bad toilet, so you know what to look out for when upgrading your porcelain throne.

How Long Do Toilets Last?

The average porcelain toilet tends to last about 50 years. The mechanisms inside the toilet can wear out much more quickly and may need to be replaced about every five years. If your home has hard water, it may cause sediment to close these parts, and they may need to be replaced more frequently. However, your toilet bowl is built to last, and you shouldn’t have to worry about replacing it often.

It’s a good idea to learn about how old your toilet is. Toilets that were purchased in the early 1990s may be wasting a lot of water. Low flow toilets used to not be able to flush very well with less water, but toilet manufacturers worked on the process, and now toilets can use about 1.6 gallons of water per flush.

Recent advancements have reduced the amount of water used for flushing to 1.28 gallons of water per flush. So if your toilet is older, you might be wasting a lot of water, and investing in a new toilet could be good for your wallet and the environment.

Signs It’s Time To Replace Your Toilet

Besides the age of your toilet, there are other signs that your toilet is going bad. Pay attention to see if you’re experiencing any of the following toilet problems.

Frequent Repairs and Clogs

Most toilet clogs can be remedied with a plunger, but if you find that you need to plunge your toilet after every use, this could be a sign of a bad toilet. If your clogs are so bad that you’ve had to call a plumber to help you multiple times, then talk to the plumber about why this is happening. It might be in your best interest to replace the toilet to save money on repair costs.

Constantly Running

A toilet that is constantly running is a wasteful toilet. Running often indicates that your toilet has a leak and you are wasting lots of water. Try replacing the toilet’s flapper to see if that helps. If it doesn’t, try the dye test to see if you can find the source of the leak. Sometimes toilets develop invisible cracks that cause water to leak out of them, and these leaks can make your toilet run.

Weak or No Flush

When your toilet just won’t flush right, a plunger is usually the first thing you try. However, if it takes multiple flushes to get things moving, it might be the kit in the tank is worn and parts down open or closed completely.


Toilet leaks can come from a number of different places. The seal at the base of your toilet could fail and can cause water to run on your floor and damage your flooring; there could also be a crack in the tank or the bowl that causes your toilet to leak; as your toilet ages, its more likely to develop hairline cracks that can cause leaks.

Hard To Keep Toilet Clean

Porcelain is hard and smooth, making it difficult for bacteria to stick to it. If your toilet is old, scratched, or cracked, this can create porus spots that will attract and allow bacteria to grow, making it a constant battle to keep your toilet clean. This bacteria can spread to other areas of your toilet or cause strong odors.

Talk To the Plumbers at Heartland for Plumbing Fixture Installation Services

If you’ve noticed some or all of these signs of these issues with your toilet, it’s time to replace it. Talk to the team of plumbing experts at Heartland to get started on your bathroom upgrade. Contact us today to get started on a toilet replacement estimate.