Toilet Flush Handle Lever Too Short, Mansfield Trip Arm Is Longer

A too short toilet flush handle doesn’t work well, but a Mansfield trip handle arm is longer to reach the flush valve or chain. The Mansfield toilet handle lever is plastic and can be adjusted or curved to fit by heating the plastic and bending or cutting the trip bar to fit. An aftermarket toilet flush handle lever is metal and can be adjusted by bending it or cutting to the proper length.

There are universal toilet flush handles that will fit almost any toilet. With universal toilet handles, there are sometimes adjustments that have to be done to the handle to make them fit. These are metal or plastic extensions connected to the flush valve.

The trick is the nut that secures the handle in place is a nut with left-handed threads. That means the nut screws on and off in the reverse direction of a normal nut. So if you were to face the nut directly, you will turn it clockwise to loosen it.

To remove the old handle:

1. Some people turn off the water supply to the toilet and flush the toilet a couple of times to empty the tank.

2. Remove the nut securing the toilet lever to the toilet tank with a pair of pliers. You will turn the nut clockwise to remove it. Slide the nut off the arm of the flush lever and pull the arm out of the tank.

3. Be careful because the tank can crack. If you turn it hard the wrong way, the wrench slips or you bang the tank wall), you could damage the porcelain. If the nut is stuck, try a lubricant like WD-40. Once you loosen the nut, remove it by hand, and slide the arm through the hole.

4. Slide the nut off the arm of the lever and maneuver the old lever out of the tank. You may have to yank the fill tube off the flush valve top; pull straight off the disk.

To replace with the new lever:

1. Remove the nut from the new handle before placing the new flush handle.

2. Insert the lever the arm into the hole.

3. Slide the nut onto the arm.

4. Screw down the flush handle base clockwise because it is a left-handed threaded nut.

5. Don’t over-tighten onto the porcelain toilet.