'Charlotte' High Level Cistern Flush Issues

Discussion in 'Plumbers' Talk' started by verynewtothis, Jul 14, 2020.

  1. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Hello everyone, it has been sometime since I have posted regarding this. The house I moved into had an old Victorian style toilet with a high level cistern. I had some issues last year with various leaks which I have not had any issues with - thanks to all of you at the time. However, i'm back with a problem that the bloody thing is now not flushing, unless you seriously keep pulling the cord 100miles per hour around 10 times continuously.

    I had a look inside but can't work why it's just gave up the ghost, could anyone give me any pointers to try and get it fixed please?
  2. nigel willson

    nigel willson Screwfix Select

    Syphon washer probs busted
    verynewtothis likes this.
  3. terrymac

    terrymac Screwfix Select

    Split diaphragm in the siphon.
    verynewtothis likes this.
  4. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Ok, thanks for your replies. Because the toilet is old would screwfix stock something that would be easy to install? If possible could you recommend a siphon that would fit please?
  5. DIYDave.

    DIYDave. Screwfix Select

    If the 'regular' old stylie siphon, as above, likely that the oval washer has split / perished
    Post a picture of the siphon, perhaps something like this ?


    Need to check height of your siphon and possibly its single flush ? but could change to dual flush, handy for just a No. 1 :)

    Loads of designs of siphons available but they all do the same thing and many are interchangeable

    If yours is above type, easy to change the washer but will have to shut off water to cistern, drain, remove siphon and take a apart but, its simple really

    Can't see the washers on SF but here they are from T Stn


    Can trim to size if needed or some peeps say you can make your own from thick polythene

    Anyway, post a picture from inside cistern, if you can, depends, may be close to ceiling ?
    verynewtothis likes this.
  6. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Not sure, looks very old.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG][​IMG]
  7. terrymac

    terrymac Screwfix Select

    You can just replace the diaphragm in the existing siphon ,or fit a complete new siphon in its entirety.
    Either option requires the siphon to be removed from the cistern.
  8. DIYDave.

    DIYDave. Screwfix Select

    Yep all standard stuff ,,,, basic siphon, link to diaphragms I gave will fit (may require a little trim to fit, maybe not)

    Ok, it’s not flushing but as long as flush handle springs back, there’s nothing else to go wrong, so it will be a damaged diaphragm (body of siphon could be cracked but that’s a long shot)

    Either simply replace diaphragm or for around a fiver, fit a new siphon and this will give you dual flush so water saving

    Flush and hold down lever for a few seconds for half flush

    Flush and let go for full flush

    Some siphons come with a label you can stick somewhere so it’s a reminder (don’t look brilliant though)

    Those in the house, just tell them a hundred times until it sinks in :)

    It’s no more work changing the diaphragm compared to fitting a new siphon

    Take a look on YouTube for guidance in fitting - no point me banging on ! But even with limited plumbing experience (you perhaps ?) it’s easy

    Just check height of fitted syphon and match to new unit, if your going this option. Some siphons are adjustable height so takes care of this issue

    That’s it

    Plumbing merchants may sell the diaphragms individually - but I don’t know

    You can upgrade to a well designed siphon - Dudley Turbo, superbly engineered, can be serviced without full removal, Rolls Royce kinda quality but the basic no frills one uv got has probably lasted 50 years or so so either repair or change for same type

    There you go - several options
    verynewtothis likes this.
  9. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Awesome, cheers for the info Dave. Will definitely do it myself so thanks for your help on this one.
    DIYDave. likes this.
  10. WillyEckerslike

    WillyEckerslike Screwfix Select

    As others have said - cut a new diaphragm out of some reasonably tough polythene. You'll see when you get into it. It's unlikely you'll need to do anything else. It's often a cheap and satisfying fix because it costs you nowt and the improvement is a revelation.
  11. Joe the Plumber

    Joe the Plumber Screwfix Select

    I'd definitely fit a new 'quick release' syphon while you've got the current one out. Yes, you can repair it, but with the quick release one, next time it will only take you a couple of minutes and you won't need to undo the syphon from the flush pipe or even turn the water off.

    I'd go for either the adjustable Dudley Turbo 88 as suggested above, or, if it won't fit (they can be slightly bigger than most - ie longer, not taller), a Turbo 44 ('D' shaped, you'll have to hunt for those) or a Derwent MacDee Metro 3 such as this. Various heights and shapes (oval, square, round, 'D') are available - look at your old one:

  12. Mr Rusty

    Mr Rusty Screwfix Select

    Reminds me of a funny(ish) story. I cut the top off some wellys a few years ago to make short wellys so they were more comfy, and I kept the rings of rubber - (you know where this is going) - when the cistern stopped flushing, guess what I used! I get accused of keeping all sorts of carp and cluttering up the place in case it comes in "handy", and this has been my "defence" story with SWMBO for quite a while!.

    BTW, the welly rubber was still working when we sold the house...
  13. marthaneilson

    marthaneilson New Member

    You can simply supplant the stomach in the current siphon ,or fit a total new guide completely. Either choice requires the direct to be expelled from the reservoir.
  14. terrymac

    terrymac Screwfix Select

    Would you recommend local anaesthetic for the stomach supplant procedure ,or fully induced catatonic distensia ,always taking the risk of occlusion to the central nervous system ?
    Mr Rusty and Joe the Plumber like this.
  15. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Ok, sorry but I have issues! I brought a turbo 88 9'' siphon at 205mm tall and tried to install this morning. The bloody thing is way to big (lengthwise) to fit into the oval shaped space in the base. The old siphon leaked on occasions and I can see why, it never fitted in the first place!

    I have taken some photos, hopefully someone could point me the the right direction of a similar branded replacement. My pregnant mrs is livid and i'm in the doghouse!

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
  16. terrymac

    terrymac Screwfix Select

    Your cistern is known as a " well bottomed cistern". Many conventional syphons will not fit into the well. You can get an extension piece which will raise the Syphon around 1 ¹/² inches ,so you need to establish if the lid will still close with the Syphon that you have purchased.
    Alternatively you can search for syphons for cisterns with well bottoms, be aware that many cistern variants exist and the sizes of the well are not consistent ,neither are the syphons made for them.
    verynewtothis likes this.
  17. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

  18. terrymac

    terrymac Screwfix Select

    Without knowing the actual width of that Syphon ,and the width of the well in your cistern ( from front to back ,and left to right) Your guess is as good as mine I'm afraid.
    verynewtothis likes this.
  19. verynewtothis

    verynewtothis Member

    Ok, I brought a Dudley Turbo 44 ('D' shaped) one today, still doesn't fit in there! Tearing my hair out!
  20. terrymac

    terrymac Screwfix Select

    Buy the extension piece as suggested in the earlier post above.
    It screws to the bottom of the Syphon ,thus extending the threaded bit and raising the valve. The big nut that holds the valve to cistern ,then actually screws onto the extension piece.

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