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Should The Toilet Tank Empty Completely When Flushed?

Should The Toilet Tank Empty Completely When Flushed

The toilet tank is a vital component of the toilet. It receives and stores water between flushes. The first toilets were installed in homes in the 1800s. Since then, the toilet has undergone many transformations to improve aesthetics and functionality. The modern toilet flushes and fills in about 1-1/2 minutes, no longer than three minutes. Toilets in commercial settings flush and fill quicker to ensure efficiency during continued use.

Should the toilet tank empty completely when flushed? Not necessarily, as factors could prevent some of the water from leaving the tank when the toilet is flushed.

How Much Water Does A Toilet Tank Hold


A modern toilet holds right around 1.6 gallons of water, meaning this is the amount you are consuming everything you flush that tank. Newer, even more, energy-efficient models hold somewhere between 1.28 and 1.30 gallons.

How A Toilet Tank Fills


Water can be heard running for several minutes after the toilet is flushed. This is essentially the tank refilling with water for the next flush. Toilet water leaks cost the average homeowner $200 to $300 annually.


The toilet tank’s primary function is to hold water between flushes. It works as a gateway for water to enter the toilet bowl. When that valve rises, it allows water from the tank to forcefully swoosh down and remove waste in the bowl. The most important thing to know is that water is essential in the waste removal process. Without water forcing the waste down the bowl and through the length of the drain pipe it would likely never reach the septic system.

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Sand Clogging The Discharge Tube

Municipal water treatment systems work around the clock to filter wastewater. The filtration process is too complex to provide a full explanation in this article. However, it can be summarized in a few sentences. Wastewater from homes and businesses returns to the water treatment facility to be sterilized.

Municipal water treatment utilizes a mixture of charcoal, gravel, and sand to remove bacteria, viruses, fecal material, parasites, dirt, and other contaminants from the water. Filtration can take up to 90 minutes before the water is sterilized enough to return to the system.

Sand, charcoal, and gravel act as filters to remove unwanted contaminants from wastewater. It is not unusual for particles of sand and charcoal to enter the system where it ends up in the bottom of a toilet tank. Any debris sitting in the bottom of the tank could result in water in the tank with each flush.

To remove debris in the bottom of the toilet tank, first, turn off the water. Flush the toilet to drain the tank. Any remaining water and debris can be suctioned up with a wet & dry vacuum. Once the tank is clean, the water must be turned back on before flushing. Make sure the tank is completely full before flushing. It is not unusual for some water to be left in the bottom of the tank.

Why Is The Tank Randomly Empty?

It is pertinent to keep an eye on the water in the toilet tank. If you notice that the water level is decreasing randomly, it could be a sign that something is wrong with the toilet. The water in the toilet tank may decrease due to a small leak. If the tank is empty randomly, there is likely a problem with the toilet or one of its components.

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Alternatively, you may be able to adjust the ball to add more water to the tank. Pull the float arm up toward the top of the tank. Once you’ve done this, the ball should raise and water should start filling the toilet tank.

The tank may be empty because of a leak or a problem with your water source. If you are unable to resolve the issue on your own, consider hiring a professional. Even if you’re dealing with a small leak, it could increase your water bill considerably.

Check The Fill Valve

When the tank is empty, it might be a problem with the fill valve. As the name suggests, the valve determines how much water is added to the tank after each flush. When you use the flusher, the fill valve will be used to fill the tank. Repeated use is eventually going to cause the fill valve to wear out to the point that it must be replaced.

Even if you have no prior plumbing experience, you should be able to adjust the fill valve. Continue making small adjustments until there is just enough water in the tank after each flush.

Float Ball

The float ball could also cause the tank to not have enough water. It also helps determine how much water should be added to the tank. If the ball is too low, you won’t be able to add enough water to the tank. Therefore, you might not have enough water to fully flush the toilet. You can pull the float ball upward to rectify this problem.

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You can also try replacing a faulty ball to deal with the problem. If the ball continues dropping too low, it will likely need to be replaced.

The Flusher Isn’t Working

In some cases, your tank doesn’t have enough water because the flusher isn’t working. When you press the flusher, the toilet should use the water in the tank to flush the bowl. If the lever is broken, the toilet will not properly flush. You may need to replace the components of the lever to get it working correctly again.

Should The Toilet Tank Empty Completely When Flushed? – Overall

When you flush your toilet, the water from the tank will be used to wash the bowl. Waste in the bowl will be pushed into the drain by the water. Then, it will travel through the drain pipe until it reaches the local sewer. The water in the tank will go down considerably with each flush, but it usually doesn’t empty completely.

There will be a few inches of water left in the tank. It may be possible to hold the flusher down to empty all water in the tank.