We have lived in two new houses in the Comox Valley during the past 15 years: 10 years in a house located in northwest Comox and five years on another property located in southeast Courtenay.
Both houses are supplied with water from the Comox Valley Regional District. In the first house, the flapper valves in the toilet tanks had to be replaced every five years. Now, in the second house, now five years old, I’ve had to replace these valves. With leaky flapper valves, water constantly dribbles away between flushes.
We do not add any additives to the toilets.
I’ve talked to the manufacturer of the valves used in the first house and also the different manufacturer for the valves in our present home. In both cases, I was told that the harsh chemicals used in the municipal water causes the silicone seals on the flapper valves to deteriorate and leak. Some neighboring homeowners were aware of the problem. Others have told me that they don’t have an issue with leaky flapper valves.
I suggest that homeowners check their toilets for flapper valve leaks. This is easily done: At bedtime, check the level in a toilet tank and shut the supply water valve. The next morning, before flushing, check the water level. If the water level has dropped significantly or the tank is dry, there is a problem, water is being wasted and the flapper valve should be replaced.
I am sure that the CVRD is aware of the problem that their treated water is causing. I am disappointed that they have not made an effort to make this issue known to the public since we are subject to water rationing every summer. Not only is water being wasted from a finite source (Comox Lake) but uninformed homeowners who are on metered water could be paying for product that they’ve never had a chance to use, which just ends up in our sewage system.