Plumbing Question

Old fashioned toilet cistern trouble


We just moved in to a new place and the toilet has a very lovely old toilet cistern well above the toilet and to one side. It does a great job of flushing the toilet, when we finally get it to flush. It takes a lot of effort to pull the chain, more effort than one would normally expect with an old toilet cistern. I am strong and it takes me a good 4-5 hard pulls to finally get it to go. It's a case of tugging really stiffly and holding for a few seconds. My wife is really struggling!

I've had a look inside and it nothing seems broken or cracked, but everything does have a thick coating of limescale, and the 'float' is an big old metal one.

We had a plumber come to take a look at it, amongst other things, and he said there was nothing he could do about it, it's just the way they are... but I think he just didn't fancy the job because it's in a really awkward position for getting access to it (we have a sloped roof which runs right across the top of the cistern). I was hoping he might replace some or all of the parts inside - would that help?

Any advice would be welcome.

UPDATE: Thanks for your answers, if it's the syphon/diaphragm, can I just get any syphon or does it need to be particular to the system?

2 Answers

Best Answer

If this is v.old, the float you think is iron may well be the iron bell. The unit may be almost Victorian if it is all cast iron. I have stripped them down and refitted them, and they are bomb proof. Unlike the push button rubbish today that goes wrong after 2 yrs.

As for the parts inside and replacement, The ball valve can be done with ease but, the rest should just clean up.

Answered 28th Aug 2012

pjb plumbing & heating

Member since 17 Apr 2012

It sounds like the syphon is not working properly a new syphon is only about £5 to buy and not a particularly difficult job to relace.
screwfix sell a dual flush siphon (£5-49) that will I believe fit your cistern but you will have to compare them for compatibility.

Answered 28th Aug 2012

kevin cassidy building contractors

Member since 16 Dec 2010

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