How to Adjust Water Level in Toilet Bowl?

A low or high water level in your toilet bowl can be a disaster. The low water level can cause clogs, while the high water level can bring a mess to your bathroom. Instead of waiting for disaster to happen, take matters into your hand as you wait for the plumber to arrive.

The main reasons behind the issue are:

  • The float in the tank is not correct
  • Clogged pipes
  • Cracked bowl
  • Blocked plumbing vents

Tools you will need:

  1. Phillips head screwdriver
  2. Towel
  3. Sponge
  4. Replacement fill valve (If needed)
  5. Wrench or pliers (If needed)

Possible damaged parts:

  • Fill valve
  • Float Ball
  • Flapper
  • Tank
  • Pipes
  • Release clip or chain

To fix this, the tank is the first thing to look at when you have a low or high water level in the bowl. If there’s a faulty part in the tank, the water level may be high or lower, which will affect the water level in the toilet bowl. Aside from adjusting your toilet’s float, you should also check your bowl and pipes.

4 Ways to Adjust the Water Level in Toilet Bowl

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You can adjust the water level in the toilet in just a few minutes. Here’s how you should adjust your water level in the toilet bowl:

The key way to adjust the water level in the toilet bowl is to understand why the water level is high or low and how much water a toilet uses.

If the water is exceptionally high, then there is a clog in your toilet or somewhere within the drain pipes. But if the water level is low, the float may be poorly positioned, the bowl or tank may be cracked, or the plumbing vents may be somewhat blocked.

Adjusting the float in the tank

Identify whether you want to lower or raise the water level based on the height of the float. If the bowl’s water level is low, the first place to look at it is the toilet tank. Your toilet tank may not have sufficient water in the tank to fulfill the vessel. Remove the toilet lid and check the level in the tank of water. There is a marked line where the water should be level when the tank is filled with water. The water should be 1 or 2 inches below the fill valve and overflow tube. Therefore, if it’s hugely lower than this, you need to adjust it right away. If you notice a leaky tank issue, fix it immediately. Turn off the water supply line before fixing it.Adjusting the float in the tank

Next, you should detect the type of float your toilet comes with. Some toilets have a ball-and-arm float, while others have a cylinder or cup float. Regardless of the kind of float your toilet has, you will start by turning off the shutoff valve at the back of the toilet. This helps to stop the water from flowing into the tank so that you can adjust the float.

Adjust your float by following the right procedure. Ball float and cylinder float are adjusted slightly differently. Regardless, you should change the float and attain the correct water level. After making the necessary adjustments, turn on the shutoff flush valve and test the toilet. Additionally, observe the level of water in your toilet. The level of water in your toilet bowl should be fine by now. If not, try re-adjusting the float again. It is essential to have the proper amount of water to ensure the toilet flushes smoothly.

Unclogging pipes

If the water level in your bowl is high, you should lower the float level. Typically, a blockage in the toilet drain can interfere with water flow from the bowl to the drain. This is a common problem in the household, but it can also be rectified with ease. If the blockage is not very bad, water may flow slowly and not get enough water to flush. But if the jam is severe, you may have to unclog the toilet.

Unclog the toiletPut on gloves and try removing what’s blocking your toilet. In most cases, it can be excess toilet paper or kids’ toys. But if the blockage is far, you should not insert your hand into the drain hole. Instead, pour some hot water into the bucket and pour it inside the toilet. Never flush the toilet if the water level is high, as it can create a mess on your floor.

Clearing a clog isn’t a problem, as there are various home products and tools you can use. Start with a plunger. Try a wire hanger or even a toilet auger. Besides you can also use vinegar, baking soda, or even some chemicals. After you’re done, try flushing the toilet and see if the blockages go down the drain. If none of the above tricks are successful, you should get in touch with a professional plumber to help you out.

Replacing a cracked bowl

Another possible reason for the low water level in the toilet bowl is a cracked bowl. If you’ve adjusted the toilet’s float, but the water level is still low, you should inspect your bowl. If the bowl is cracked, water will seep through the bowl slowly and reduce in the to fix a cracked toilet base

Related article: How to replace your old toilet easily

Besides, a leakage in the bowl can cause the water level in the bowl to be lower. Thus, you should also check the seal and see if it’s worn out and needs to be replaced. Failure to do so may cause serious structural problems that you wouldn’t want. Also, your bathroom may become a water puddle and a risky surface.

Replace the toilet bowl if it’s cracked. Make sure you get the perfect bowl for your toilet. If you cannot install the toilet by yourself, contact a professional plumber.

Clear the plumbing vents

If the tank and bowl are okay, the problem may be coming from your plumbing vents. A functional plumbing system has vents that allow air to maintain the ideal pressure. If the vents are faulty or damaged, air won’t flow as needed, and water won’t flow properly.Clear the plumbing vents of toilet

Some of the signs of blocked plumbing vents include toilet splutters and gurgles when you flush another toilet in the house or empty the bathtub. You can fix this problem by draining water from the vent pipes with high-pressure water from the garden hose. If the problem is consistent, you may have to protect your plumbing vents by covering them from the rooftop.

You can have peace of mind as the water level in your toilet bowl should be okay. If all of these tips don’t work, contact a professional plumber to inspect your toilet. Check the water level. Maybe the problem is with the sewerage line, which you cannot handle. Some toilet model features a release clip that helps raise or lower the float by turning it clockwise or anti-clockwise.


Adjusting the toilet bowl’s water level shouldn’t be a problem if you know where to look. The tips above should help you know where to look and rectify the situation as soon as possible. Never assume that it’s a poorly positioned float before checking other toilet parts, such as a cracked bowl. You can now fix your running toilet and have peace of mind.

Hi, this is Robert Crossan, the owner of this website, has 17 years of experience in the installation, maintenance, and repair of toilets and plumbing systems. After completing the Level 2 Basic Plumbing course in 2005, I started working in both domestic and commercial buildings as a professional plumber. So I can figure out the core difference between different toilet models and brands. It also helped me monitor their work performance and setbacks.

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