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DCL

13.7% of water used in the home isn't even used. It's wasted through leaks. You're spending 13.7% percent of your water budget on nothing. That isn't money down the drain. It never even made it to the drain. One of the most common sources of these leaks is the toilet flapper.

The toilet flapper is that little rubber thing that covers the hole in your toilet tank. Water, being the universal solvent, will corrode that rubber flap over time. If you put a brick in your toilet tank to save water, you should consider replacing it with a plastic bottle filled with gravel. Minerals from the brick can corrode toilet parts.

Make sure that it is, indeed, the flapper that needs replacing. Make sure the chain isn't tangled or the flapper isn't misaligned. Check to see if the flapper hasn't come off it?s hinges. If the flapper feels old and stiff and if your toilet runs intermittently, you probably need a new flapper.

Here's how to replace a flapper.

1. Turn off the water to the toilet.

2. Flush toilet.

3. Remove old flapper from chain and hinges.

4. Clean the area where the old flapper sits. Remove all detritus and debris.

5. Attach new flapper to chain and hinges.

6. Turn on water.

7. Keep the tank open. Watch the flapper when you flush to make sure that it sits right. You may have to adjust it.

8. Floats will have a clip for adjustments. Arms will have screws. Make adjustments as necessary.

A toilet flapper costs less than ten dollars.