Best Toilet Fill Valve to Fix Your Slow and Noisy Toilet — Reviews & Buying Guide
- Posted by Mary O. Frazier
- On February 12, 2021
- 0 Comment
A toilet is a complex sanitary fixture, and while a bowl can last almost forever, other parts will need replacement at some point.
One of these parts is the toilet fill valve that controls the filling of the tank and holds the water until you trigger the flush.
Fortunately, you can easily replace it by yourself, and this guide will tell you how to do it, along with offering the 5 best toilet fill valves for any occasion! So, be sure to read the full article!
How to Find Out If Your Toilet Fill Valve Needs Replacement?
There are three main signs that your toilet fill valve needs replacement:
- Your toilet refills slowly. If your toilet takes a lot more time to refill than usual, this means that the water doesn’t pass through the valve properly. This could be because of scale build-up if your water is too hard, or worn out parts of the valve can cause an obstruction. Also, if the tank isn’t properly filled because of blockage in the valve, you might have a weak flush or no flush at all, so there’s another sign to look for.
- You hear strange noises during the flush. Both ballcock and canister fill valves have some moving parts that help close the valve as the water in the tank reaches the high point. During use, these parts may corrode or become jammed, and when water under pressure passes through them, you might hear different sounds, such as high-pitched screaming or a low humming sound. This indicates that the valve isn’t functioning properly and may need replacement.
- Your toilet tank leaks. Now, a leaking toilet has more than one reason. This could be because the flapper on the bottom of the tank is misaligned, or cracked and lets the water out. Or, it could be because of the worn-out parts in the fill valve. To rule out the flapper, you can add some food dye in the tank, and if the water will change its color after a few flushes, it’s the flapper’s fault (1). Otherwise, it’s time to replace a fill valve.
Fortunately, most fill valves manufactured today are relatively cheap and the replacement is easy and more reasonable than fixing certain parts. So, if you noticed any of the signs above, just pick a new fill valve and get rid of all the problems.
Our 5 Best Fill Valves
Best Overall — Editor’s Choice
- fits most 1.28 GPF and 1.6 GPF toilets with 2’’ or 3’’ flush valve;
- adjustable height from 10 to 15 inches;
- has a roller clamp that helps you adjust water usage;
- fills the tank up to 2 times faster;
- made of heavy-duty materials.
Fluidmaster is one of the best toilet fill valve manufacturers, and the 400ARHR is its best model because of universal height, great performance, and compatibility with a wide range of commodes, including dual flush.
This fill valve can be adjusted from 10 to 15 inches in height and fits the majority of toilet tanks. Also, it’s made of hard plastic without any metal parts and has a floating cup closing mechanism, which makes it suitable for water pipes with high pressure and overall more durable.
The 400ARHR is designed to eliminate the most common problems, such as leaks, noises while flushing, and slow refill. It features a roller-clamp part that helps you regulate water usage. Plus, it can make your tank fill up to 2 times faster, which is another advantage.
Finally, this fill valve doesn’t require any tools or advanced knowledge for installation, so even a beginner can do it.
- Fits the majority of tanks with 2’’ and 2’’ flush valve and commodes with a dual flush system
- Helps you regulate water consumption and fill the tank more quickly
- Doesn’t have metal parts that can rust in the water
- Sometimes it makes loud noises while refilling the tank
- Some users report minor manufacturing defects
Best Fill Valve for Dual Flush Toilets
- convert your standard toilet into a more efficient dual flush commode;
- has a leak-proof seal made of silicone;
- comes with a trip lever (or a flush valve);
- doesn’t require tools for installation;
- 1-year warranty.
Next by Danco is one of the best toilet fill valves on our list because it converts your single-flush unit into a dual-flush without replacing it, which can significantly reduce your water bills. Plus, the Hydroright is suitable for older models that spend 3.5 GPF or more, so if you have a toilet that is installed more than a decade ago but is still usable, you can easily upgrade it.
So, the Next by Danco is entirely made of durable plastic, which eliminates corrosion and makes it suitable for hard water. Also, it features a leak-proof silicone seal that creates a seamless connection and is resistant to high water pressure and chemicals. Aside from that, the seal keeps the valve stable and ensures quiet operation.
Finally, the Danco doesn’t require any tools or tank disassembly for installation. The only thing to keep in mind is that it requires at least 10’’ clearance to the inside of the tank lid.
- Easily upgrades your old toilet to water-saving standards
- Seamless and leak-proof design
- Replaces the flapper, chain, and handle, which are the most vulnerable parts of the system
- it may not fit one-piece units, as they have smaller tanks
- It might be difficult to install for complete beginners
Best Noiseless Fill Valve
- fits most toilet brands on the market;
- height adjustable from 7.75’’ to 13.5’’;
- QuietFill technology eliminates any unnecessary sounds;
- the twist-and-lock adjustment makes the installation straightforward;
- comes with all the parts needed for installation.
The 528 valve by Korky earned its place in our selection of the best toilet fill valves for its quiet operation and installation that takes less than five minutes. Plus, it looks very similar to the TOTO’s original flush valve, so if you have their commode, you can use the manual as your guide.
So, the Korky packs a convenient twist-and-lock mechanism, and its height adjusts from 7.75’’ to 13.5’’ to fit most toilet tanks. Also, this valve features the chlorazone rubber gasket, which is very durable and ensures a leak-proof connection for years.
Another prominent feature of this fill valve is its quiet operation. If you need to fix a noisy toilet, this valve can easily do it both because it’s seamless and because it has a more modern closing chamber that works quieter than a ballcock.
- Ensures no leaks and noises thanks to a seamless design and chlorazone rubber gasket
- Incredibly easy to install, you can use TOTO’s manual if you have one
- Suits most one-piece and two-piece commodes thanks to adjustable height
- Isn’t compatible with dual flush systems
- Some users report that it doesn’t fix the slow refill problem
Best Toilet Fill Valve for High Pressure
- suitable for most 1.28 GPF and 1.6 GPF toilets;
- comes with an adjustable 3’’ flush valve;
- adjustable valve height and flapper to fit different tanks;
- anti-siphon technology prevents the backflow;
- resistant to corrosion and high pressure.
Pressure in water pipes can differ, but the most common range is 30-80 psi. However, higher pressure makes fixtures and parts wear out more quickly. That’s why we included the 400CAR3P5 by Fluidmaster as our best toilet fill valve for high pressure: it’s made of hard plastic and features anti-siphon technology that prevents backflow, which is common in the case of high pressure.
This fill valve suits most single-flush toilets with 1.28 or 1.6 GPF water consumption and has an adjustable height that makes it fit most toilet tanks. Also, it has an adjustable flapper, but note that the peak performance is achieved with 3’’ flush valve tanks.
The 400CAR3P5 valve is easy to install and doesn’t require tank removal. Plus, it includes all the necessary parts and can be handled even by a beginner.
- Adjustable height and universal fit for most modern toilet brands
- Easy to install with all the parts included
- Great for higher pressure because of anti-siphon technology
- Might not fit toilets with a 2’’ flush valve, even though the flapper is adjustable
- Makes noise for the first 2-3 weeks after installation
Best Toilet Fill Valve for Hard Water
- adjustable from 8’’ to 13’’;
- ensures faster tank refill;
- comes with 6 water flow adjustment caps that help you regulate water use;
- features anti-siphon technology to keep drinking water safe;
- plastic parts have a smooth surface to prevent mineral buildup.
The Plumbcraft is the perfect toilet fill valve for hard water because of its smooth finish that prevents mineral buildup from adhering to it. Also, it ensures a powerful flush that works as a self-cleansing rinse, which contributes to a longer lifespan.
Aside from that, the valve is very versatile: it has an adjustable height (8’’-13’’) and comes with color-coded water caps that help you tweak water flow and make your commode compliant with modern water-saving standards.
The Plumbcraft is also pretty quiet. It has a float-cup design and doesn’t hiss as much as the traditional ball valve. Plus, it’s pretty sturdy and all the parts are tightly secured, so you won’t have awkward sounds while flushing as well.
- A smooth finish makes it resistant to mineral buildup in hard water
- Helps you regulate the water use with the water flow adjustment caps
- Floating cup technology is quieter than ballcock and can fit into narrower tanks
- Some users report that it’s not very durable
- Might not fit into a one-piece toilet
Things to Check Before Buying a Good Toilet Fill Valve
Fill Valve Type
There are several fill valve types:
- Piston (plunger) ballcock valve. This is the oldest type of fill valves, and you might find them in toilets that were manufactured before 2007. The advantage of piston valves is that their body is entirely made of brass, which ensures quiet operation and an almost eternal lifespan. The name ‘ballcock’ originates from a floating ball attached to the pivoting lever that opens and closes the water inlet port, thus regulating the refill. However, modern International Plumbing Codes require each fill tank to be equipped with a backflow preventer (also known as anti-siphon technology)(2), and piston ballcock valves don’t have it, so you need to replace it. (Code 415.3)
- Diaphragm-type ballcock. These fill valves are probably as old as plunger valves, but they feature anti-siphon technology in a form of a flexible rubber diaphragm that controls the water flow and prevents the backflow into the water supply line. These valves can come in the brass body (older models) or plastic body (newer models), and regardless of the material, they offer you excellent performance and a long lifespan.
- Float-cup valve. These are anti-siphon valves originally introduced by Fluidmaster. They don’t have a floating ball, which makes them more compact and allows fitting into narrower tanks. Instead, they feature a floating O-shaped cup that moves up and down along the valve shaft as the water fills into the tank. The water level in the tank is regulated by the metal clipped spring which attaches the cup to the actuating rod.
- Floatless fill valve. These are commonly found in low-profile and compact toilets and feature a pressure-sensitive diaphragm element to control the water inlet. However, floatless valves have a mixed record of reliability and are prone to leaks, so most plumbers avoid them in favor of float-cup valves.
Water Pressure and Hardness
Hard water with a lot of mineral ions can make certain parts of the fill valve deteriorate faster. This is especially true for the gasket that keeps the bottom of the tank sealed. Be sure to choose heavy-duty plastic and the gasket made of silicone, chlorazone, or another hard rubber — these materials wear out more slowly.
As for the high pressure, the diaphragm-type ballcock in the brass body might be a good pick, but this type of valve is considered obsolete. So, make sure that you choose a more modern variety with no metal parts because they tend to rust.
Every toilet manufacturer has its own specifications when it comes to dimensions. To ensure a universal fit, many fill valves today have an adjustable height. In most cases, to reach the desired point, you need to screw the shaft shorter or longer until it fits, which is very simple.
Make sure your flush valve is compatible with the flushing system of your toilet. Some fill valves allow you to convert a single flush commode into a dual-flush, which is great if you have an older unit, but most of them are compatible with either single-flush or dual-flush systems.
Also, make sure to pick a water-efficient fill valve that uses only 1.28 GPF or 1.6 GPF per flush.
How to Replace Toilet Fill Valve?
Finally, let us briefly walk you through the replacement process. It’s a fairly easy operation that takes a couple of minutes and doesn’t require advanced knowledge of plumbing. Here’s how to do it:
- Turn off the water and empty the tank. Normally, the water shutoff valve is located on the wall near the left side of the tank. This is the place where the water supply connects to the tailpiece of the fill valve. Find the valve, turn it off, and then flush the toilet. Open the tank and mop the remaining water on the bottom with a sponge or cloth.
- Remove the old fill valve. First, place the old rugs or towels under the place where the water supply connects with the tank because there might be spills. Second, take an adjustable wrench and disconnect the water supply tube from the valve tailpiece. Then, loosen and remove the mounting nut that connects the valve with the insides of the tank and the valve.
- Prepare the new fill valve. To do this, insert a rubber washer into the bottom flange of the tank: it will create a tight seal once you secure a new valve. Then, twist the shaft of the valve to adjust its height so that it will be slightly taller than the overflow tube, but not too high.
- Insert and secure the new valve. Insert a tailpiece through the bottom opening in the tank, and position the valve so that the water outlet nipple points at the overflow tube. Next, thread the mounting nut onto the tailpiece from outside the tank and screw it using pliers or wrench (make sure not to twist the shaft while you’re doing this). Finally, reconnect the water supply tube: first, screw it by hand, and then slightly tighten using the pliers.
- Fill the tank. To do this, attach one end of the rubber tubing to the water outlet nipple, and clip the other end to the top of the overflow tube. If the tubing is too long, you can cut it so that it bends smoothly with no kinks. Now, turn on the water supply and adjust the water level so that it fits the waterline inside the tank.
- Flush the toilet to make sure everything works fine and there are no leaks.
We recommend that you go for float-cup valves with no metal parts and the gasket made of chemical-resistant rubber or silicone. These features contribute to leak-proof operation and resistance to corrosion. Also, make sure that you know the model of your commode because some valves might be incompatible with it.
No, there are several types of fill valves, but today the most common of them are float cup and diaphragm ballcock types. Both of them are pretty durable and comply with the International Plumbing Code.
On average, toilet fill valves last 4-5 years before they start leaking. Note that if you use bowl cleaners, this can reduce the lifespan of the valve by more than half.
In most cases, fill valves have a lock and twist mechanism, so you just need to twist it with your hands until it reaches the needed height.
According to our research, the quietest fill valves are made by Korky. They have no loose parts and are made of smooth and durable plastic, which makes their operation quieter than other brands.