Toilet fill valves last about 5 years and sometimes longer depending on the quality of the valve, how often the toilet is flushed, and whether the home has hard water. However, like any valve that’s constantly exposed to water, a fill valve can eventually clog or begin to leak.
Fortunately, replacing a toilet fill valve is usually a straightforward DIY project, and today’s universal fill valves fit the most common types of toilets. It’s often a good idea to replace the toilet’s flapper assembly while you replace the toilet valve, so many fill valves come as a kit with a flapper included as well.
The best toilet fill valve will have high-quality, durable parts and be simple to install. If your toilet tank is hissing, squealing, or filling slowly, one of the following replacement valves will help you get it back in top shape.
- BEST OVERALL: Korky 4010PK Complete Toilet Repair Kit
- BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: Fluidmaster High Performance Fill Valve
- BEST SILENT-FILL VALVE KIT: Kohler Silent Fill Toilet Valve Kit
- BEST WATER-SAVER VALVE: Fluidmaster 3-Inch Fill Valve Kit
- BEST UNIVERSAL VALVE: American Standard 400A Universal Fill Valve
What to Consider When Choosing a Toilet Fill Valve
Toilet fill valves have a simple task: They allow the flow of fresh water into the toilet tank after a flush, and then they cut off the water supply when the tank is full. That’s all they do, and when they’re working well, they’re easy to take for granted. The only time anyone pays attention to a fill valve is when the toilet starts making odd sounds as the tank refills or takes a long time to fill. The existing faulty toilet fill valveand the type of toilet are considerations when shopping for a new fill valve.
Common Types of Toilet Fill Valves
Fortunately, a few types of reliable toilet fill valvesare available. Many are universal, meaning they will replace the same fill valve type that’s in the toilet now, even if the toilet brand is different. For those who aren’t sure which type of toilet tankfill valveto buy, consider removing the old fill valve (turn off the water supply to the commode) and then taking it to a home improvement or plumbing supply store to ensure an exact match.
Ball Cock Fill Valve
Also called a plunger fill valve, the ball cock has been around for decades, and it was made to last—the earliest models featured all-brass components. The ball cock fill valve is identifiable by its elongated, air-filled orb that floats on top of the water in the toilet tank. When the flush lever is depressed, a bar lifts a chain connected to a flapper (seal), and the water rushes into the toilet bowl and flushes the contents. The air-filled ball drops to the bottom of the tank, which opens the fill valve so fresh water can flow into the tank.
As the water level rises, the air-filled ball floats upward, and when it reaches a predetermined point, the valve closes, and the water stops.
Float Cup Fill Valve
This type of toilet valve works on the same principle as the ball cock, but instead of an air-filled ball that floats on the water, it features an air-filled cylinder that moves up and down the valve stem when the toilet flushes and then the tank refills.
When the toilet is flushed and the water runs out of the tank, the float cup drops to the bottom, which opens the water flow valve. When the cup floats to the top, it shuts off the water supply.
Many of today’s toilets come with float cup fill valves, and they’re both simple to adjust (water level-wise) and simple to replace.
Internal Float Fill Valve
Some of today’s toilet fill valves work on the same general float system, but they contain a small internal float located inside the valve stem. While you won’t see an internal float rising and falling with the water level, it will still open and close the water inlet as needed.
Floatless Fill Valve
Rather than an air-filled ball or cylinder that controls the water supply in the tank, a floatless fill valve features a pressure-sensitive diaphragm that sits at the bottom of the tank and is completely submerged.
When the water level in the tank drops after a flush, the diaphragm senses reduced water pressure and opens the water inlet to refill the tank. When the water pressure increases to a preset amount—based on the level of water in the tank—the valve shuts off the water.
Compatibility With Your Toilet
Most toilet fill valves are compatible with valves of the same type—if they’re labeled “universal.” For example, universal float cup valves will fit the tanks of most toilet brands as long as they contain a similar valve. However, replacement ball cock valves won’t fit tanks with float cup valves and vice versa. Likewise, a replacement valve must fit the toilet’s flush configuration. Check to see if the flush lever is on the side of the toilet or on the lid of the tank.
Additionally, some toilets come with brand-specific fill valves that can only be replaced by installing a valve made by the company that made the toilet. It’s typically a good idea to check with the toilet’s manufacturer before purchasing a fill valve.
In general, fill valves are more likely to be universal than flush valvesor flapper assemblies because both of the latter often depend on the configuration of the tank. On the other hand, the fill valve is pretty standard from model to model and can often be combined with a variety of different flush valves and flapper assemblies.
Older toilets are notorious for wasting water—some of them use 5 to 6 gallons of water per flush. New toilets are designed to use just 1.6 gallons or less per flush. If you have a toilet that was sold after 1994, you probably have a low-volume toilet intended to flush efficiently with less water waste.
Many of today’s replacement fill valves are explicitly made for low-volume toilets, but you can still find a few models that will replace the valve in an older toilet. If you have an older toilet that is not a low-volume model, look for a fillvalvethat’s labeled for toilets with 3.5-gallon or larger tanks.
Flushing the toilet should be reasonably quiet, right? Well, for some, it’s anything but. Flushing the toilet can lead to banging, hissing, squealing, or loud gurgling sounds. Some of these unwelcome sounds may be alleviated by replacing the fill valve. Hard-water deposits in the valve can lead to squeaking or shrill whistling sounds. These noises will stop when a new valve is installed.
However, installing even the quietest fill valve might not stop all flushing sounds. If you’re experiencing banging or loud gurgling sounds, the problem could be in the water supply lines or the vent connecting to the drain line. Silencing these noises may require the services of a plumber.
Our Top Picks
The following models are made from quality materials and come with a reliable track record, which was necessary to qualify for a spot in this lineup of the best toilet fill valves. You’ll notice a couple of brands more than once; this is because only a handful of manufacturers are currently producing high-quality replacement fill valves. Try the manufacturer if you can’t find a valve that fits your toilet here.
Replace the fill valve only or replace the entire fill-and-flush assembly in the toilet’s tank with the Korky 4010PK Complete Toilet Repair Kit. The kit has a universal design to fit most toilets with standard 2-inch flapper openings. The valve comes with an internal float located in the stem. The water level is adjustable, and the entire assembly is designed to fit in low-flow toilets that use 1.6 gallons of water or less per flush.
The toilet repair kit contains a fill valve, a flush valve, a premium flapper made of long-lasting chlorazone rubber, a new tank-to-bowl gasket, complete installation instructions, and all the hardware needed to install the new fill valve and flapper assembly.
- Type: Internal float fill valve
- Compatibility: Low-volume toilets
- Included components: Fill valve, flush valve assembly, and flapper assembly
- Adjustable water level
- Durable components
- Contains flapper and flush valve as well as fill valve
- Universal with most float-type valves
- Users may pay for components they don’t need to replace
Get the Korky toilet fill valve repair kit on Amazon or at Ace Hardware.
DIYers need not spend a fortune to replace a toilet fill valve. The Fluidmaster High Performance Fill Valve fits most toilets, it features a refill rate that’s up to two times faster than many other fill valves, and it’s about half the price of some competing models. Users can flush again soon after the first flush, which is a boon for large families with limited bathrooms. However, keep in mind that the toilet tank refill time is also dependent on the pressure in the water supply hose that feeds the tank.
Though powerful, the Fluidmaster fill valve also has a quiet operation and adjusts so that users can select the water height in the tank that works best for them while conserving water. The Fluidmaster universal fill valve sets the standard for today’s toilets and has a design that should last for years. Best of all—it comes an an attractive price point
- Type: Float cup valve
- Compatibility: Most low-volume toilets
- Included components: Fill valve and hardware
- Fits most low-volume tanks
- Designed for quiet flushing
- No flapper or flush assembly included
Get the Fluidmaster high performance toilet fill valve at Amazon, The Home Depot, or FaucetDirect.
Silence is golden, and the Kohler Silent Fill Toilet Valve Kit is designed to damper the sound of water rushing back into the tank after a flush. This is the fill valve only—no flapper—and it’s designed to adapt to most Kohler commodes. The valve comes with multiple fill-rate inserts users can adjust to optimize the water level in the tank and conserve water.
Kohler is a leading manufacturer of high-quality toilets, and if your home has a Kohler toilet, it’s a good idea to go with a Kohler-brand replacement valve. The new fill valve assembly comes with all the necessary components and complete instructions. Find the model number of the Kohler toilet on the inside back of the tank and check here to find the right fill valve.
- Type: Float cup fill valve
- Compatibility: Most Kohler toilets
- Included components: Replacement valve, fill hose, and hardware
- Designed for quiet operation
- Adjustable water level
- Fits a range of Kohler-brand toilets
- Not a universal fill valve
Get the cat Amazon, Lowe’s, or The Home Depot.
Replace a damaged fill valve in a water-saver toilet with a new Fluidmaster 3-inch Fill Valve Kit. It comes with an oversize rubber flapper for toilet tanks with 3-inch flapper drains. This universal toilet fill valvekit features adjustable valve height to control the amount of water in the tank.
The fill valve can be installed with or without the included flapper assembly. The Fluidmaster fill valve assembly features corrosion-resistant materials for long-lasting use, and the kit comes with the fill valve, a flush valve, a flapper assembly, all the hardware required to install the unit, plus complete instructions. Note: It does not fit standard 2-inch flapper drains.
- Type: Float cup valve
- Compatibility: Universal with most 3-inch drains
- Included components: Fill valve, flush valve, flapper assembly, and hardware
- Adjustable water level
- Additional flush and flapper components for complete replacement
- Fits water-saver toilets
- Will not fit standard 2-inch flapper drains
Get the Fluidmaster 3-inch toilet fill valve kit at Amazon, Lowe’s, or Tractor Supply Co.
The American Standard 400A Universal Fill Valve comes with only a replacement valve and the hardware necessary to install it, making it well suited to repairing toilets where the flush valve and flapper assembly are still in good shape.
The American Standard fill valve is made from durable plastic designed to resist corrosion and withstand frequent use. The water level in the tank can be adjusted from the valve to increase the amount of water if the bowl is not clearing during a flush or lowered to save on water consumption if desired. The American Standard fill valve is also suitable for most types of flush and flapper assemblies. Check your toilet’smodel number here for compatibility.
- Type: Float cup valve
- Compatibility: Universal, replaces most float cup valves
- Included components: Fill valve, installation hardware
- Fits most toilet tanks
- Designed for high use
- Adjustable water level
- Valve height is not adjustable
Get the American Standard toilet fill valve at Amazon, The Home Depot, or Lowe’s.
While any fill valves in this lineup are among the best options for replacing an old valve, our choice for the best overall, the Korky toilet fill valve repair kit, ticks all the boxes. It fits most types of toilet tanks and it comes with a flush assembly to boot. In the silent-flush arena, the Kohler toilet fill valve kit is designed to minimize noise during flushing, and it’s compatible with a range of Kohler toilets.
How We Chose the Best Toilet Fill Valves
In selecting the best toilet fill valves, we extensively researched dozens of models and looked for ones that came with high customer satisfaction both in quality and in ease of installation.
We looked at brands such as Kohler, Fluidmaster, and American Standard that are well known in the toilet and bathroom industry with a reputation for producing high-quality products. We selected a range of individual fill valves and entire kits that contained other tank components, most often a flush assembly or a flapper assembly—or both.
We recognize that not all fill valves will fit all types of toilets. If you’re not sure what type of valve to order, we recommend removing it from the tank and taking it into a plumbing supply store where a customer service technician can assist in choosing a suitable model.
Hissing or groaning after the toilet flushes and the tank is refilling is a sign that the existing toilet fill valve is on the fritz. Fortunately, replacing a fill valve is relatively simple, and many DIYers are capable of the task. For those contemplating replacing the fill valve, some questions are likely.
Q: How does a toilet valve work?
The toilet fill valve has just one purpose: It opens the water inlet after a flush so fresh water can fill the tank and then closes the inlet when the water level reaches a specific height. The most common way of doing this is via a float that drops and rises with the water level, but some valves have pressure-sensitive diaphragms that determine when to open and close the inlet.
Q: What are the signs that it’s time to replace a toilet fill valve?
The most common signs are noises after a flush, such as hissing, squealing, groaning, or the tank taking an extraordinarily long time to fill.
Q: How do you replace a toilet fill valve?
Tanks and toilet fill valves may vary slightly, so follow the instructions that come with the valve. However, in general, you’ll need to take the following steps:
- Turn off the water supply to the toilet and then flush the toilet to remove water from the tank.
- Disconnect the fill hose from the valve (it usually twists off easily).
- Remove the old valve that connects to the bottom of the tank (you’ll probably need adjustable pliers), and place a bucket under the tank to catch any excess water that runs out.
- Clean out the tank—no sense in installing a new valve in a dirty tank.
- Install the new valve by inserting the bottom through the tank’s valve hole and tightening the nut on the outside to secure it in place.
- Attach the fill hose to the valve.
- Turn on the water supply and test by flushing. Also, look for leaking around the bottom of the tank, indicating you need to tighten the nut a bit more.
Q: How do you adjust a toilet fill valve?
This depends on the type of fill valve. Ball cock valves can often be adjusted by slightly bending the arm that supports the air-filled ball. A float cup valve often comes with an adjustment screw that can be turned to increase or decrease the water level. Consult the new valve’s installation manual for the correct technique for your chosen valve.