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Many people consider toilets to be some of the most difficult appliances in their homes. They use them several times a day, but when it comes to fixing them, they draw blanks. Leaks in toilets generally happen in two main spots: the refill valve and the flush valve. If your valves are leaking, it can mean thousands of gallons of water are wasted each year from your home. That can cost you big bucks in water expenses.

How do you know if your flush valve is leaking?
You need to test your flush valve. Take the top off your tank and put some drops of food coloring inside. Don't use the toilet for an hour or so. After an hour, check the inside of your toilet bowl. Water should not leak from the flush valve into your bowl. If there is food coloring in your bowl after and hour, you have a flush valve leak.

How do you know if your refill valve is leaking?
Take the top off your tank and look for the plastic pipe that originates from the bottom of the tank. Your tank's water level should be about an inch below the top o the pipe. If the water level is even with the top of the pipe, your valve may be leaking. Try flushing the toilet and watch the refill valve. If you see any trinkles of water squirting up, your valve has a leak.

How do you fix your toilet leaks?
Replacing the valves will solve your problem. Once you determine which valve is the problem, simply go to your hardware store and buy a new valve. They typically cost less than $10. The valves you buy in the store likely have instructions on how to install them, and they typically are easy to repair. If you aren't sure how to install your valve, you can ask your hardware store experts. This generally will save you a lot of money in plumbing fees.