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Why Is My Toilet Whistling? 5 Common Bathroom Plumbing Issues

From a whistling toilet to a clogged shower drain there are many little, annoying bathroom plumbing problems that crop up. Many of them are minor and you can fix yourself. Let’s take a look at five of the most common ones here.
From a whistling toilet to a clogged shower drain there are many little, annoying bathroom plumbing problems that crop up. Many of them are minor and you can fix yourself. Let’s take a look at five of the most common ones here.

Why is my toilet whistling? A question you never thought you’d ask yourself.

Not only is it annoying to have your toilet whistle every time you flush it, but also it doesn’t sound good when you’re trying to sell your home and someone flushes the toilet during your open house.

It’s not necessary to call a plumber for every little thing that goes wrong in your bathroom. Thankfully, most bathroom plumbing issues you can take care of yourself. Let’s take a look at five of the most common ones.

1. Whistling Toilet

While normally, whistling a tune is pleasant and cheerful, this isn’t the case when your toilet is the one making the noise. Luckily, this problem shouldn’t be too difficult to fix.

Toilets typically whistle when the metal parts inside of their ballcock valves begin to vibrate. This usually happens as the tank is filling and is a result of either the gasket wearing out or wear-and-tear on the parts.

Replacing the valve is a simple fix. New valves are made of plastic so your toilet shouldn’t be belting out a merry tune again anytime soon. You can do this yourself, but if you don’t even know where to look for the valve, you may want to call in an expert.

2. Clogged Sink

This issue is so common that you’ve probably already run into it a time or two. Unclogging a sink can be as simple as using a plunger to dislodge the clog. It’s good to follow up with a chemical drain cleaner to ensure that the clog is completely removed — otherwise it may clog up again quickly.

Tougher clogs may require removing the U-bend under the sink. Most clogs end up either in the bend or near it. Turn off the water and place a bucket under the pipes to catch any leftover water. Then you can remove the U-bend and clean as necessary.

3. Leaky Faucet

That drip...drip...drip from the bathroom faucet not only keeps you up at night but also runs up your water bill. The usual culprit in this case is a worn-out washer. This is a little piece of rubber that is supposed to create a seal when you turn off the faucet.

Simply remove the faucet handles to check for damage to the washers and replace as needed. In most cases, you can do this yourself. However, some faucets may require a special tool to remove, in which case you may need to call in a professional.

4. The Tub Drains Slowly

Most people lose between 50 and 100 hairs a day. Much of that ends up going down the shower drain. As you can imagine, it can build up quickly — particularly if you have long hair. As regular maintenance, you should clean the hair from the drain to prevent this problem.

However, even if it does clog up, it isn’t usually too difficult to remove the clog. Needle nose pliers may be long enough to insert into the drain and pull out the hairball. You might have to remove the tub stopper to do this.

If that doesn’t do the trick, there are special plumbing tools you can get to reach down into the drain and clean it out.

5. A Clogged Toilet

A clogged toilet is one of the nastier plumbing issues you can run into. Thankfully, as long as you catch it in time, it isn’t too difficult to fix. The plunger that we mentioned earlier for clearing out the sink should do the trick.

If that doesn’t work, you can try a closet auger. This is a long, flexible steel “rope” that you can insert into the toilet. It has a handle on one end that you can use to maneuver.

If neither of these solutions works, it’s probable that the problem isn’t local and you’ll need to call in a professional to service the line.

What Repairs Are Necessary?

Some problems might not need an immediate solution, but if you’re planning to sell your home you should repair them anyway. Buyers are, understandably, more interested in buying a home that doesn’t need a number of repairs right off the bat.

What if you’re unsure what types of problems you should fix? This is where the expertise of a knowledgeable real estate agent is useful.

As you know, making repairs means investing more money in your home and you want to keep that at a minimum. Every situation is different and a list of recommended repairs, while helpful, won’t always steer you right.

For example, in a seller’s market, you may not have to make as many repairs to sell your home. In a buyer’s market, however, you may have to do everything possible to attract interested buyers. A knowledgeable real estate agent can make recommendations based on the current market and other factors about your home.

How do you find a local agent? We’re so glad you asked. Here at Clever, we can connect you with an expert agent in your area. We only work with the best so you can be assured that you’re getting good help.

Whether buying a home or selling your current one, we can help. So contact us today!

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Jamie Ayers

Jamie is the Director of Content at Clever Real Estate, the free online service that connects you with top real estate agents and helps you save thousands on commission. In the past, Jamie has managed columns for clients in a variety of leading business publications, including Forbes, Inc., CEO World, Entrepreneur, and more. At Clever, Jamie's primary goal is to provide home sellers, buyers, and investors with the information they need to successfully navigate the ins and outs of the real estate industry.

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