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Plumber Matthew
Plumber Matthew, Plumber
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 156
Experience:  Licensed Journeyman Plumber. Eleven years of Commercial and Residential plumbing.
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notices a water stain in my ceiling below upstairs bathroom.

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notices a water stain in my ceiling below upstairs bathroom. Water began to drip down, so I turned off my upstairs toilet and water stopped dripping. So the leak is coming from the toilet, could it just be the wax o-ring seal?
Hello and thank you for your question,

If it were the wax ring leaking you would only have water dripping immediately after you flush the toilet. If the water stopped dripping when you shut off the toilet shut off valve then look carefully at the water supply line running from the shut off valve to the toilet.

Do you know what type of water lines you have in your home?
Do you see any visible water around the toilet?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
There is no water outside the toilet. I think all my water lines are pvc
Did the water stop dripping as soon as you shut off the toilet or did it take a little while? With the water off to the toilet did you notice the water level in the bowl or tank dropping?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
The water stopped dripping once I shut off the water and flushed the toilet. It was not immediate it stoped dripping after about 3 minutes.
With the water valve still turned off try pouring a bucket or two of water down the toilet bowl. If the dripping returns then it is most likely a bad wax ring seal. If it doesn't drip let me know and we will continue to diagnose.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I have poured water in the bowl and now I am waiting.
Did you pour enough water in to basically cause the toilet to flush?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I put enough water in to cause the toilet to flush. I noticed a dripping sound in the toilet tank that should have gone away once the plunger rose. it kind of sounds like a fast dripping but I don't see where the drip is coming from. Weird.
Did you pour the water in the tank and then flush it or did you pour the water directly in to the bowl?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I poured the water into the tank.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
It is not dripping. I think it has to be coming from inside the wall now.
Where is the shut off valve for your toilet? Is it at the toilet?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Shut off valve is at the toilet, right behind it on the left.
I don't see how shutting off the valve at the toilet would cause a leak in the wall to stop dripping. Do you have anything else around the toilet? Does the bathroom back up to a kitchen or another bathroom? You may have to open up the ceiling below to see what is dripping. If there is a lot of water it would be a good idea to dry the area out and replace the drywall.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.

next to the toilet is a bathtub but it is not in use regularly because this is my guest bath. Iunderstand what you are saying about the water valve at the wall, I was hoping it was the o-ring but ass soon as i turn on the water from the wall, drip happens. It is not a lot of water, water spot is the size of a smoke detector, actually the water was dripping from the detector too.


The only other reason I thought it might be the o-ring was that when the water is off the tank seems to drain like I flushed the toilet but no drip occurs unless I turn the water on.

Customer: replied 8 years ago.
The water is draining from the tank into the bowl until it is gone.
The most likely cause of the water draining in to the bowl is a damaged or out of adjustment toilet flapper. I would recommend replacing the flapper. Since whenever the water is on, the toilet tank is leaking in to the bowl and the water is running in to the drain pipe it is conceivable that the wax ring seal is damaged causing the dripping. If you have the ability I suggest removing the toilet and replacing the wax ring. With the toilet removed look for damage or cracks in the toilet floor flange, piping and the entire toilet itself. Please let me know what you find.
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
I think that since the tank is constantly filling the bowl with the water on, the water pressure is simultaneously forcing the bowl to drain and the o-ring it then leaking water which is dripping into opening where socket for smoke detector is. The water buildes up then seeps through hole where spoke detector is. My plan is to install a new tank kit, replace the o-ring and reseal the toilet to the floor.
Sounds like a very good plan. Please take time to let me know how it turns out. Thanks!
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