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Marc, Plumber
Category: Plumbing
Satisfied Customers: 1127
Experience:  Plumbing heating & home maintenance contractor
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We have a Briggs toilet that looks to be ancient, and the

Customer Question

We have a Briggs toilet that looks to be ancient, and the flushing mechanism is shot...I was going to try to replace it myself, but it requires that the tank be removed entirely and the bolts that attach the tank to the toilet base are so corroded that I don't think I can get them office. We've been told that we should never replace these toilets because they are high flow and with the plumbing in our house (it was built in 1905) the newer low flow toilets should probably clog up.
JA: How long has this been going on? And how severe is the problem?
Customer: It's been a problem off and on for quite some time. I replaced the flushing handle some time back but it has corroded and needs replaced. As far as I can tell, the toilet operates fine with replacing only the handle, but I'm just not sure there aren't other issues.
JA: Do you plan on doing the work yourself?
Customer: If it's a simple matter of replacing the handle, I can do that. But if there's other issues, I'd need a professional. Should I just buy a new handle and see what happens after that?
JA: Anything else we should know to help you best?
Customer: no
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Plumbing
Expert:  Rick replied 11 months ago.

Welcome to Just Answer, my name is ***** ***** I will do my best to help you with your issue. First I’ll need some more info so I have a more complete picture of you situation.

What is the problem you want to correct?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
We have a Briggs toilet that is malfunctioning. The flushing handle is completely corroded. I've replaced the handle once before but it has failed again. The toilet looks to be ancient, but we've been advised by a plumber we trust that we should not replace it because the plumbing in our house would not support the new low-flow toilets that are on the market now. I don't know if the problem can be addressed with simply replacing the flushing handle alone.
Expert:  Rick replied 11 months ago.

Ok, but you haven't told me yet what the malfunction is. Is it not flushing? is it leaking from the tank into the bowl? I can't offer a solution until I know what specifically the problem is. I have a source for vintage Brigs parts. They may have what's needed.

Expert:  Rick replied 11 months ago.

Let me put it another way, what happens when it malfunctions?

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
It won't flush because the handle and chain link have corroded. I guess what I should do first is just put a new handle and chain in and see if that solves the problem. Like I said, another plumber said to not replace the toilet because the plumbing in our house would not support the low-flow toilets that apparently are the only thing available on the market today.
Expert:  Rick replied 11 months ago.

Your plumber's opinion is not one that I agree with. Low flush toilets have been installed in houses with old plumbing since they came out 25+ years ago and there have been no significant problems related to old plumbing (in good shape). If replacing the handle and chain (flapper?) solves the problem then that's an easy fix. If you want an assessment of the condition of the parts in your tank you can post a picture here by clicking on ADD FILES next to the SEND button.