How to Troubleshoot a Kohler Toilet

Hunker may earn compensation through affiliate links in this story. Learn more about our affiliate and product review process here.
Image Credit: Mark Lopez/Moment/GettyImages

The Kohler toilet is a popular bathroom brand due to its reputation for well-built and beautifully designed fixtures. However, when a Kohler toilet doesn't flush, water splashes out of the bowl after each whoosh or another malfunction occurs, it can be quite annoying.


Minor issues with any brand of toilet can arise. Troubleshooting a Kohler toilet malfunction is fairly simple and can be done with minimal do-it-yourself skills and effort.

Video of the Day

Kohler Toilet Running or Leaking

The sound of a steady stream of water filling the toilet tank, a ripple of water over the surface of the water in the bowl or a constantly running toilet means that you are wasting water. It is more than likely the fill valve that is causing the constant noise. Check under the cap of the fill valve at the bottom of the tank to see if debris has lodged under there or the trip lever arm is caught. Sediment from hard water can collect on the fill valve cap.


To remove the fill valve cap, press down and rotate a quarter turn. Remove the seal and clean it. If the seal is damaged, replace the fill valve. Cover the valve unit with a small plastic cup so that the water doesn't spray when you turn it back on. Turn on the water supply and let it flush out the fill valve for about 30 seconds. Replace the seal with the nipple facing up and return the fill valve to the assembly and turn the water back on.


If the toilet continues to run, then the fill valve needs to be replaced or the trip lever chain isn't set up correctly. Adjust the trip lever chain if it is too tight or loose. It should have about 1 to 2 inches of slack to function properly.

Adjust the Water Level

If the water level in the tank is too high or too low, it can mess with the function of the fixture. A low level of water in the tank can lead to a lot of clogs because there's not enough flush power to remove solid waste from the bowl. High water can lead to splashes and a running sound coming from the toilet. The water in the tank is raised or lowered by the float nestled beneath the fill valve.


Before adjusting the water level on the Kohler toilet, squeeze the C-shaped clip on the float valve so that it can be raised or lowered. To raise the water in the tank, adjust the float so that it is higher on the rod. To lower the water, slide the float down. Release the float valve adjustment clip when you think the float is at the right height.

Flush the toilet to see if the float is adjusted correctly. Repeat the process until the water is at the correct level and the toilet no longer makes noise or flushes incorrectly.


When to Call a Professional

A toilet that continues to run or make gurgling noises may need professional service. It could be that the tank is cracked or the seal is somehow compromised. A plumber can diagnose what the hidden problem is and fix the issue before it becomes a bigger, and possibly more expensive, problem.



Report an Issue

screenshot of the current page

Screenshot loading...