Having a toilet problem is never a fun time. Especially if your toilet fills up then slowly drains it can be frustrating. It can also be dangerous because you run the risk of overflow. 

The main reason your toilet is filling up with water and slowly draining is that there is something stuck in your toilet. Despite this, there are also other reasons this problem might be occurring.

Reasons Your Toilet is Filling Up and Draining Slowly

Something is Stuck Up Your Toilet

The most common reason your toilet is losing water slowly is due to having something stuck up it. When this happens, the water in your bowl will go up first before going down. This can be alarming. The most common things that may get stuck up your toilet bowl includes:

  • Wipes
  • Razors
  • Tissues
  • Small toys
  • Toothbrushes
  • Q tips

Your Toilet Ports and Bowl Are Clogged

Rather than something simply being stuck in your toilet, another reason that your toilet water may not be draining properly is that the toilet ports could be blocked. In order to do this, you will need to check the toilet ports. Toilet ports are essentially where the water drainage tube attaches under your toilet bowl, they look like two little holes under the rim. 

You Need More Water in The Toilet Tank

Another reason your toilet is flushing slowly, and possibly incompletely, is because the water level is too low in the toilet tank. This is often the case behind the toilet issue. In order to avoid this, you can keep an eye on your toilet. 

Do this by checking the toilet bowl often, check its flushing speed, and keep an eye on how quickly it is draining. The instant you see a problem you should fill the toilet tank and see if that is the reason.

How To Solve These Toilet Problems

If your toilet is flushing slowly and rising slowly, the toilet water rises too high when flushed, or the toilet bowl slowly loses water, there are easy fixes for these problems.

Hot Water and Dish Soap

Since one of the reasons for toilet water rising slowly is due to a clog in the drainage pipes of the toilet, you can remove this bu using hot water and dish wash soap. You can simply use dawn or another soap that breaks down oils. 

Take both hot water and the soap, and mix them in a bucket or bowl. Pour these into your toilet. Let them sit for a few minutes. Hopefully, this will work to unclog the blockage in the toilet and allow the toilet bowl to fill normally.

Use a Plunger to Unclog the Toilet

Using a plunger is a simple way to unblock a slow draining toilet or stop the water from filling your toilet bowl slowly.

  1. Take your plunger and insert it into your toilet bowl.
  2. The top of the bell should be covered with water.
  3. Insert the rubber part directly into the drain opening.
  4. Push and pull the handle with strong thrusts for 20 seconds.
  5. Make sure you do not lift the plunger and break the seal

Use Substance Dissolvers or toilet cleaners

Also known as substance dissolvers, you can also use toilet cleaners typically used commercially to solve a blockage. These typically contain chemicals that will dissolve clogs in your toilet. By putting these into your toilet, you should easily fix your problem of toilet water draining slowly. 

Note: if you plan to use strong chemicals, you need to take extra caution. Do not get these chemicals into your eyes, and make sure to wear gloves as well as eye protection.

Clean Out the Toilet Ports

If you examine the toilet ports and there is something inside them, you will need to unclog them. When doing this, you will also need to open the drain pipes. The reason for this is that threads, hair, or other substances may get stuck in these pipes.  

Do this by inserting a thin wire into one of the clogged holes under the rim. Scrape out the debris, and be careful not to scratch the bowl. 

Other Common Toilet Problems

Phantom Flushes

Water trickling into the bowl can also be known as a phantom flush. This occurs when you hear your toilet spontaneously refilling. This almost seems as though someone has flushed it, but it never was. If you have a toilet that is turning itself off and on by itself, then it means you have a very slow leak from the tank into the bowl.

This problem is certainly caused by a bad flapper or flapper seat. The solution to this is to drain the tank and bowl. Then you need to check your flapper and replace it as it is most likely damaged.

Hissing Sound Coming From Your Toilet

If you hear a constant hissing coming from your toilet, then it is most likely because of water trickling into the tank from the supply line. You will need to check a few parts in this case:

  • The float
  • The refill tube
  • The ballcock or inlet-valve assembly. 

This hissing sound is usually caused by water coming through the inlet valve. In order to confirm if this is the problem, you must first check to see whether the float is sticking.

Next, check the refill tube. It should not be inserted too far into the overflow tube. If this does not solve the problem, then you may need to replace the ballcock assembly.

Weak Flush

If you have a bowl that empties slowly, it also means you have a weak flush. This is due to having clogged holes under the rim of the bowl. Using a curved piece of wire, you should poke into each flush hole.

Try to clear out anything that is stuck in these holes. If you can, use a small mirror to see under the rim. You can also use a coat hanger to loosen anything that is blocking the jet at the bottom of the drain.

Leaking Seals

There are five main seals on the toilets. Each of these seals needs to be in working order or it must be replaced. The largest seal will be found between the tank and bowl. If you have a break between this seal, you may run into major problems such as water coming out from under the tank each time you flush.

How To Replace This Seal

  1. Drain the tank by turning off the water supply, then flushing the toilet until there is no more water left in the tank. Follow up by wiping away any residual water with a sponge or towel.
  2. Next, remove the tank and turn it upsidedown. 
  3. Remove the old seal, and replace it with a new one.
  4. Check the smaller seals at the base of the ballcock. If necessary, replace these as well.

Related Questions

When do I need to call a plumber?

If you are having trouble with your wax seal underneath the toilet base, you may have a serious problem. This water leakage can eventually rot the floor. If this leak is caused by a broken flange, then it would be in your best interest to call a professional.