It’s easy to tell if the chain in the tank of your toilet is broken: you’ll press down the lever to flush and there will be no resistance and nothing will happen. Luckily, a toilet tank chain is a simple piece of equipment: you should be able to tell exactly what the problem is once you look in the tank.
Step 1: Shut the water supply valve by turning it clockwise to prevent more water from entering the toilet tank.
Step 2: Remove the top of the toilet so the tank is exposed. Reach in (keep in mind that the water in the toilet tank will be as clean as the water coming from the tap) and pull up on the rubber flapper that seals the hole in the bottom of the tank. Let the water drain into toilet bowl.
Step 3: Use a small cup and sponge to remove any remaining water that is still in the toilet tank.
Step 4: Take a look at the toilet tank chain. It should be a chain with small links that connects the lever of the toilet handle and the mechanism above the rubber flapper.
Step 5: If the toilet tank chain has simply slipped from the end of the flapper mechanism, reattach the chain to the hook on the flapper. Jiggle the toilet handle to make sure that when the handle is depressed the rubber flapper lifts up. Shorten the length of the chain until this occurs. Then pinch the end of the hook that attaches to the toilet tank chain with a pair of pliers.
Step 6: If the toilet tank chain has broken in the middle, you can use a small piece of wire to connect the two pieces of chain. Insert a piece of wire into the first whole link in the broken ends of the chain. Twist the ends of the wire together, not leaving a gap, with a pair of pliers. Trim the wire so it is short and will not interfere with the surrounding pieces of the toilet. Jiggle the handle of the toilet to make sure that the flapper will be engaged when the handle is depressed.
Step 7: If the toilet tank chain is in overall bad condition, with a break or other problem, you can replace the whole chain. Purchase a chain from a home improvement center, then use a pair of pliers to detach the pieces of the old chain and attach the pieces of the new chain. Check the length of the new chain by using the toilet handle to make sure that the flapper moves properly.
Step 8: Turn on the water to the toilet by twisting the water shut off valve counterclockwise. Wait for the tank to fill, then flush the toilet to make sure everything is operating properly. Place the top of the toilet back over the tank.