11 February 2013

How to Replace Toilet Handle

When we moved into our house last year,
the downstairs toilet handle was broken, as shown below:

Last week, I replaced it.
All by my lonesome.
(Unless you count the little one underfoot.)
For $5.
And now I'll show you how to do it, too.

First, buy a handle replacement kit.
I found this one at Lowe's.
Next, take off the top of the tank.
 Then turn off the water.
Flush the toilet so the water level goes down.
And since the water is off, it will stay down so you don't have to get your hands wet.
Take a look at the white plastic piece hooked on the end of the
handle lever: mine is plastic, but yours might be a metal
chain of some sort.  I prefer those, but didn't feel the need to replace this one,
since there's nothing wrong with it.
Remove the 'chain' from the lever, see below:
 Carefully set that aside.  You could drop it in the water if you want, or you might be able
to drape it/hook it over the floater rod (the gold piece in the pic above).
Or have a handy helper grab it for you and hold it in place.
 Next, unscrew the nut on the handle...it's right up against the tank.
I neglected to take a picture of it, until it was done.
Dispose of those pieces.
Next, insert the new handle lever into the hole.
 Slide the new nut onto the lever, and turn it a few times so it
won't fall off while you reconnect the chain.
 Reconnect the chain.
If you have the weird plastic kind like we do, make sure you double it through
the lever.  And pay attention to which hole you attach your chain to.
When you push the outside handle, you want the chain to lift up the flapper.
If you look up to the picture with my daughter's hand, you will see 
what the flapper is - it's the large flat piece on the bottom that's attached
to the chain.  That picture shows it in the up position.
The picture above that one shows it down.

Once the chain is attached in the correct spot,
tighten the nut to the handle.
Here's my completed photo.
Turn the water back on.
 It will flow into the tank.  Mine stopped where it should.
If yours doesn't, you may have altered something that you weren't supposed to.
Good luck.
 Replace the tank lid.
Enjoy the new handle.

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