Timing is everything in getting the handle on flushing toilets


by admin on March 31, 2011

The Editor,


Re the suggestion in “Tips to minimize energy waste rate a high five” (Low Down, March 9-15 edition) to replace toilets with low-flush models:

That’s great, if said toilet needs replacing. If not, then here is how anyone with a pair of scissors and a few minutes can turn an existing toilet into low or “dual” flush types.

Simply disable the flapper valve (the rubber part that lifts from the opening at the bottom of the tank which in turn causes the flush) by cutting out a V-shaped wedge (opposite its hinges) from the bulbous hollow part (careful to not to damage the flat part that makes the seal). This prevents the flapper from floating and will close immediately on releasing the handle.

Thus you become “auto,” and quickly learn how long to hold the handle for short, intermediate or heavy-duty flushes. The extra seconds this will add to workload will be vastly outweighed by your greatly assuaged conscience (Canadians are the greatest wasters of water on earth).


Jean Maisonneuve,

Masham, Quebec