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Toilet Tank Wobbles? [Do These 3 Things to Fix It]

If your toilet tank is wobbly, you can fix it by tightening the bolts carefully. Alternatively, a wobbly tank can be caused by a loose gasket. You can correct this by replacing the gasket. Finally, toilet tank wobbles are not a cause for concern as long as the tank is not leaking onto the floor or into the bowl. You can stabilize a slightly wobbly toilet tank by using plastic braces designed for this purpose.

Toilet tank wobbles

Is it OK for Your Toilet Tank to Wobble?

Contrary to popular belief, a small amount of wobble where your toilet tank bolts to the bowl is usually fine. What is important is that the tank is not leaking water onto the floor. It’s also essential that the toilet tank does not constantly leak water into the bowl. If the tank is leaking into the bowl, your toilet will run to refill periodically even when it hasn’t recently been flushed. If there are no signs of leaking, fixing a slightly wobbly toilet tank is usually more preference than necessity.

  • A small amount of toilet tank wobble is okay.
  • If your toilet tank is leaking water onto the floor, it requires repair.
  • If water is leaking into your toilet bowl from the tank (your toilet will run to refill the tank periodically), repair is necessary.
  • If the tank wobbles a lot or is not secure, it should be repaired.

If your toilet tank wobbles excessively, seems in danger of coming loose, or if it leaks water, then it should be corrected. What’s most important is that your toilet tank is secure and functions properly.

Why is Your Toilet Tank Wobbling?

Your toilet tank typically wobbles because the bolts that hold the toilet tank to the toilet bowl are loose. Loose connecting bolts allow the tank to shift. However, your tank may wobble because the rubber gasket connecting the tank to the bowl is old, damaged, or too thin.

  • Toilet tank bolts are too loose.
  • The gasket between the tank and bowl is old or damaged.
  • The rubber washers for the tank bolt are working correctly and there is only a slight wobble.

Because rubber washers are used for toilet tank bolts, they may compress to allow the tank to wobble slightly. This is okay. If the tank bolts are too tight, they can crack the porcelain toilet tank. A cracked or broken tank is sure to leak and must be replaced. This can be an expensive repair. So, a cracked toilet tank is much worse than a tank with a slight wobble.

3 Ways to Fix a Wobbly Toilet Tank

Toilet models that have separate tanks and bowls commonly have toilet tanks that wobble. If you are currently experiencing this and would like to correct it safely, here’s how to get the job done so that your toilet tank is secure and undamaged.

Replace and Tighten the Toilet Tank Bolts

Loose bolts are the number one cause of a wobbly toilet tank. Corroded rubber washers on your tank bolts can also contribute to a wobbly tank. So, replacing and tightening these bolts is the best way to reduce or eliminate toilet tank wobbles. If you’re wondering how to get the job done precisely, follow our complete guide to tightening toilet tank bolts. To do this job yourself:

  • Turn off the flow of water to the toilet.
  • Flush the toilet 2 times to fully empty the tank.
  • Locate the 2–3 tank bolts at the bottom of the tank.
  • Use a wrench or screwdriver to prevent the bolts inside the tank from turning.
  • Remove the toilet bolt nuts by using an adjustable wrench.
  • Replace the old bolts with this new toilet tank bolt kit.
  • Hand-tighten the nuts on the new bolts.
  • Use your wrench to gently tighten the bolts one-quarter turn per bolt.
  • Tighten just enough to make a snug seal.
  • DO NOT overtighten. This can crack your toilet tank.

Take extreme care when tightening toilet tank bolts. Once the nuts are finger-tight, use your wrench to tighten each bolt one-quarter turn before moving to the next. Tighten the bolts as little as you can to achieve a wobble-free tank. If you overtighten these bolts and crack the tank, you will have to replace your toilet tank.

Replace the Tank Gasket

Water passes from the toilet tank into the toilet bowl via a rubber gasket between the tank and the bowl. If this gasket is loose, too thin, or has hardened with time, it can lead to a wobbly tank that leaks water. If your tank is leaking water and is wobbly, it’s best to replace the gasket. To do this:

  • Turn off the flow of water to your toilet.
  • Flush the toilet until the tank is empty.
  • Remove the bolts holding the tank to the bowl.
  • Lift the tank straight off the bowl.
  • Lay the tank on its side or upside-down on a towel.
  • Remove the rubber gasket at the bottom of the tank.
  • Replace the old gasket with this gasket from this kit.

When replacing the toilet gasket, it’s a great idea to replace the tank bolts and washers as well. Over time, rubber gaskets and washers break down, leading to hardened rubber and a wobbly tank. By following these steps, you’ll prevent your tank from wobbling and stop any water leaks.

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Install a Brace for Your Toilet Tank

If your toilet tank has a slight wobble but isn’t leaking water, sometimes all you need is a set of inexpensive toilet tank braces to stabilize it. A brace for a toilet tank fits onto the back of your toilet tank. It extends backward to brace snugly against the wall. This prevents the tank from rocking back and forth. To make this fix:

  • Use this set of adjustable-length toilet tank braces.
  • Remove the top cover from your toilet tank.
  • Measure the distance between your toilet tank and the wall behind it.
  • Adjust the length of your tank braces to fit the measured length.
  • Slide the hooked end of the brace over the top edge of your toilet tank.
  • Repeat for a second brace—you need 2 braces to stop your tank from wobbling.
  • Make sure the braces are snug against the wall.
  • Put the top cover of your toilet tank back on.

It really is that simple. No tools are required. This simple fix can prevent a wobbly tank. In cases where the tank wobbles slightly but the tank bolts and gasket are in good condition, tank braces provide a fast, cheap fix that stops tank wobbles.

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How to Stop a Toilet Tank from Wobbling

In order to prevent a toilet tank from wobbling, the best solutions are to:

  • Remove and replace loose toilet bolts.
  • Replace the rubber gasket connecting the toilet tank to the bowl.
  • Install plastic braces that prevent the tank from wobbling.

Remember, the most important thing is that your toilet functions properly, without leaks. If your toilet tank has a slight wobble but is not leaking into the toilet bowl or onto the floor, it may not need repair. It’s best to be gentle and avoid over-tightening tank bolts. This can crack your toilet and cause serious damage or water leaks.

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