Saturday, March 25, 2023


An easy, quick way to fill your RV’s toilet bowl

By Nanci Dixon

Thetford toilet instruction

This tip seemed so simple I hesitated to write about it, but since it has saved us a lot of work and quickened the toilet fill I thought you should know about it too. RV toilets, unlike home toilets, require a manual fill with water. Holding down a lever to get sufficient water into the bowl requires some patience and time.

On our toilet, the screws would loosen on the fill mechanism and start to leak. It was such a hassle to remove the shroud, lay down on the floor and tighten the screws every few weeks. It leaked enough that I had ordered a spare mechanism to replace it but hesitated when the instructions read, “Remove toilet from floor.” Ummm…

Filling cup in sink

We now simply keep a plastic cup in the bathroom to fill the toilet bowl with water from the sink. The sink water pressure is much higher than the toilet fill pressure was – and the best part, no more leaking!



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Jacques Lemieux
1 year ago

Keeping water in the toilet bowl ensures you do not get fumes from your black water tank leaking into your living area. (Yuck!) I agree with those who advise you get this rather small problem fixed before the stink starts to really make things nasty.

Roger B
2 years ago

We have a Dometic toilet that you can lift the flush handle to fill and push down to flush. Fills fast. We too use wash water when boondocking.

Don N
2 years ago

If the screws keep coming loose, get a small tube of mild lock-tite at your hardware/auto parts store. That would keep the screws from coming loose. If your discharge seal is leaking, check it for debris in the seal groove. Otherwise you can replace the seal to stop the leak-down.

2 years ago
Reply to  Don N

My whole bathroom floor had to be replaced because the toilet valve had a tiny leak unnoticed by us until too late. Water went down the pipe and then into the insulation under the floor. We didn’t know there was a problem until the floor buckled on a short drive between campgrounds. What a mess!

2 years ago

If I don’t have to drain the bathrm sink of soapy, hand-wash water, I use it with a sm plastic cup to add water to toilet bowl.

2 years ago

Wow I just checked my toilet. It took 5 whole seconds to fill. Multiply that by 15 years of RVing (5 full time and 10 half time) that’s a lot of wasted time.
Oh wait you have to go to the sink fill the cup then pour it in the toilet.
Never mind 😎

Jennifer R Willner
2 years ago

We also pour dish washing grey water down the toilet. I like Nanci’s suggestion to fill the toilet with sink water because that *does* go faster than the toilet fill, leak or no leak. A container is also handy when you want to rinse the bowl after cleaning it. Thanks Nanci!

2 years ago

Hmmm? It sounds like the foot lever is loosing the screws with each down press. Is there supposed to be a small thin metal (SS) washer behind the screw head to allow the lever to move without taking the screw with it? (KISS) Start with the simple first.

Thomas D
2 years ago

Not the funnist job ( pun not intended) but sooner or later it’s going to need fixing. The beauty of it is so simple to remove and replace the toilet. Maybe its time to go high boy or add a sprayer. Online i bought a new porcelain high rise with sprayer a couple years ago for around $150.

Jeff Arthur
2 years ago

Actually most rv toilets aren’t complicated. 2 bolts and a supply & your out . Get a new floor seal & ball seal ahead of time . There’s YouTube videos out there. Just get the model numbers off the toilet first! Get another valve assembly & git ‘er done .
It’s not difficult

Wayne c
2 years ago
Reply to  Jeff Arthur

And once properly repaired or replaced, problem will be solved for a long time and no more wasted time doing the work around.

2 years ago

Geoffrey-how do you get the used water into the jug? At the sewer dump valve? Yuck.

2 years ago
Reply to  Thom

They’re probably like us. We do dishes in a tub that fits in our kitchen sink and dump that in the toilet. Otherwise we would fill the gray tank a lot faster than the black tank. It also keeps grease and small food particles out of the gray tank–which helps reduce gray tank sensor problems.

2 years ago
Reply to  Irv

sounds to me that is fixing problem A to create problem B. Whats to keep food and grease off Black tank sensors.

2 years ago
Reply to  Dale

Most RVer’s use an additive to the black tank to break down waste.

Geoffrey R Baker
2 years ago

When boondocking, we keep a large jug of used washing up water by the toilet and use that to flush and fill the bowl after we turn off the water pump. Saves on fresh water and helps to even out the wastewater tanks levels.

2 years ago

Agree with everyone else. Something is not right in toilet-ville….

2 years ago
Reply to  Rick

should buy a new toilet that works properly.

2 years ago

I don’t see why it would stop leaking, you are still flushing it, right, so you are still using the valve! if it leaks when you are putting extra water in its going to leak when you flush it. There’s a problem & that “Ummm” you mentioned is going to happen sooner or later!

Diane Mc
2 years ago

Our coach is 19 years old. Never had a problem like that. We did have to replace the seal. But the foot lever that flushes & fills the bowl works like the day we picked up the motorhome. (Hope I didn’t just jinx us😂). I would agree with the others, something is a miss.

2 years ago

The remedy offered should be temporary at best, just to get you to where you can get it fixed. Leaks don’t heal themselves so get ready for the surprise flood. And have that water pressure checked too.

2 years ago

I also have never had this problem and neither has any of camping gang. Need to have someone investigate for root cause.

2 years ago

I’ve never encountered an RV toilet with the problem you’re having. I would start by checking to see what type of distribution system your RV has. If it’s a “manna block “ each line has it’s own valve and it’s possible that valve has been partly closed which could account for a loss of volume and pressure.
If that doesn’t work dissemble the valve at the toilet and check for debris that could be blocking the flow.
Next, trace the water supply line that’s connected to the toilet and check for kinks. One of those should solve the problem. If not I would then try replacing the toilet valve internal parts. If all of that doesn’t solve the mystery you could tap into the sink cold water line and plumb it to the toilet. That would be the closest supply and the least amount of new plumbing.

2 years ago
Reply to  bisonwings


Yours is the same toilet as ours which we’ve had (as original to the rig) for 12+ years. We’ve never had the problem you describe. Many of our friends have the same thing as well and to my knowledge don’t have the issue either. The more common problem with these is the leaking water valve- which I’ve experienced. I had to replace it about 6 years ago when it started a slow drip…and by-the-way, this involved removing the toilet as well. -Not hard…just a little tedious. My personal suggestion is to replace the whole toilet- probably around 150 bucks or so. Be sure to get a new flange too. Good luck!

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