Besides the occasional plunging, toilets are very low-maintenance. However, whenever there is a mechanical problem, it’s usually due to a broken toilet flush handle or lever – after all, it’s the most-used apparatus. If your toilet is having a problem with flushing, you can safely bet that it’s an issue with the handle and the rod. Or, you just might want a new toilet handle for aesthetic purposes.
Toilet flush handles come in a surprising number of variations – that’s why, when you’re looking to replace your toilet handle, it’s best to know exactly what you’re looking for ahead of time. If you want to be absolutely sure you’re getting the correct handle, you should remove the old handle and bring all of its corresponding parts with you to the hardware store. Toilet flush handles can have very specific features, even going down to the length and angle of the little arm.
However, you aren’t limited to replacing your toilet flush lever with the exact same kind as the one before. There are plenty of options available in stores and online. If you know the customer service number for your toilet, you can call them and ask which handle is the best one for your model, and learn about capacity so you don’t make a mistake.
A universal toilet tank flush lever is compatible with nearly all modern toilets, no matter what kind of tank lever or other parts the toilet uses. All it takes is some adjustments, and the universal toilet handle will fit without fail to any toilet you need.
You can also purchase a toilet handle from the manufacturer of your toilet – as long as you have the model number, you’ll be offered plenty of handle options.
It’s important to remember that, when you loosen the nut holding the handle from within the tank, it is threaded the opposite direction we’re accustomed to. Rotate the bolt clockwise to keep from stripping the threading.
So what kinds of toilet flush handles are available?
Front-Mount Toilet Handle
Your most typical toilet handle, the front-mount handle is built to the foremost part of the toilet on the left-hand side. The flush rod within the tank moves parallel to the handle lever, making the front-mount and easy handle to identify.
However, even though front-mount handles are the most common, they don’t all equally fit with every toilet. You always need to measure the lever of a front-mount handle, or bring the old handle to the store before you buy a new one for your toilet.
Side-Mount Toilet Handle
Whereas the front-mount handle is located in the front of the toilet, the side-mount is located on – exactly – the side of the toilet. More specifically, a side-mount handle is attached to the side of the toilet that would be perpendicular to the wall against the back of the toilet. In order to identify a side-mount toilet, examine the inner lever and see whether the rod is at a 90-degree angle – this lets it pivot up and down when it functions.
While less common than front-mount toilets, you can just as easily find a side-mount handle to match up almost any toilet.
Angle-Mount Toilet Handle
Most toilet-tanks come in square-shaped tanks, but some tanks are round. For these round toilet tanks, there is the angle-mount handle. These handles are the most difficult to match up, because they come in a variety of angles that are specific for the differing curvatures of rounded toilet tanks. An angle-mount toilet handle is commonly set at a 45 degree angle so that the rod can reach the valve at the center of the tank.
You can adjust some flush rods so you can achieve the best angle for the rod that fits with the curvature of the tank. When replacing an angle-mount handle, you need to take the old handle to the hardware store, contact the manufacturer and order a new handle from them – or, there are universal toilet handles that are available that are specifically designed to accommodate all angle-mount handles.