What to do about a “phan­tom flush”:

The Capital - - COMICS & FEATURES -

On oc­ca­sion, you may hear your toi­let flush it­self. Though this can be dis­con­cert­ing to hear in the mid­dle of the night, it’s no ghost and no home in­truder. In­stead, the phan­tom flush in­di­cates that water is leak­ing from your tank into the toi­let bowl. Thanks to the phys­i­cal laws that make toi­lets work, when enough water fills the bowl, it flushes au­to­mat­i­cally.

In most cases, a wornout flap­per in the tank causes this leak. Test for a leak by put­ting a few drops of food col­or­ing in the tank and wait­ing to see if it be­comes vis­i­ble in the bowl with­out flush­ing. You can hire a plumber to re­place the flap­per, or if you feel handy enough, you can pur­chase the parts at a hard­ware store and try it your­self.

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