RV Toilet Leaking at Foot Pedal

RV toilets aren’t indestructible!

They’re produced and assembled with a bunch of moving parts, valves, washers, flanges, and more. With enough time or use, some parts from even the best RV toilets will show signs of wear.

It’s a good idea to give them the once over now and again to look for RV toilet leaking problems. This way, you can catch them before they potentially flood your RV bathroom.

One of the most used parts of any RV toilet is the foot pedal. It takes the foot’s weight and activates the flushing action.

As a result, it can sometimes wear down or wear out, and that can contribute to a water leak issue.

Is your RV toilet leaking at the foot pedal? As RV toilet leaks go, it’s one of the most common things to happen. Usually, it’s either because of residue surrounding the pedal area or the intake valve has become damaged.

Certainly, any residue will break away with enough toilet flushes. However, the water intake valve won’t fix itself and if this is the issue, it will need replacing. But the good news is that it can be done by hand.

Let’s now look at RV toilet leaking, how to resolve any leaking below the foot pedal, and what the root causes might be.

Table of Contents show

RV Toilet Leaking

When dealing with a Thetford toilet leaking or a Sealand RV toilet leaking, it can create a palpable sense of panic where we imagine the worst. Nevertheless, don’t fear.

How do I stop my RV toilet from leaking?

There are some common causes for toilets leaking in an RV. Fortunately, there are reliable solutions to many of these RV toilet problems, which are covered in detail in this article.

Let’s start off with 5 of the common RV toilet leaking issues experienced by RVers:

#1. RV Toilet Leaking at Base

There are several potential causes for an RV toilet leaking at the base:

Deteriorated Internal Seals – If the internal seals have worsened to a stage where it’s causing a leaking at the base, then the toilet may be on its way out.

Conclusion: It may be possible to get the seals inspected, and replaced, but if this is the real issue, then it’ll be expensive. Most of the time, this occurs outside of the toilet’s warranty period. Then it becomes more sensible to replace the toilet at a known fixed cost versus the uncertainty of a repair that may not take.

Toilet Flange Seal is Bad – Simply put, the closet flange provides a seal from the bottom of the toilet to the floor and beyond. This can be one of the more common Thetford toilet problems. When the flange stops working effectively, water leaks at the base are bound to occur.

Conclusion: A replacement RV flange seal will be required to fix this. This Thetford Closet Flange Seal (Part number 33239) (affiliate link) fits many of their RV toilets. Also, the following part will be good for Dometic 300 Series RV toilet owners needing a Mounting Hardware Kit (affiliate link) for their toilet too.

Faulty RV Toilet Valve – A bad water valve will leak water at the base near the foot pedal. As covered earlier, repairing the valve is a non-starter.

Conclusion: Replace the valve with a new one from a respected brand like Dometic, Thetford, or Beech Lane. Avoid inexpensive third-party valves because the cost of water damage should it fail just isn’t worth the risk. See our expanded section on water valve replacements for many different RV toilets makes & models.

Toilet Bowl Has a Crack – The toilet could have sustained damage during your travels. This could have created a crack in the toilet bowl that is now creating a slow water leak either when the water reaches that level or when it is flushed.

Conclusion: You could try using an RTV silicone sealant (affiliate link) in the short term to seal where the crack is located. This may work for a few weeks or months. Sooner or later though, it will be necessary to purchase a replacement RV toilet.

#2. RV Toilet Leaking on Floor

Many of the identical likely causes for an RV toilet leaking on the floor match one that’s leaking at the base.

In addition, look into the RV toilet vacuum breaker because it has a float seal that can cause floor leakage when it fails too. Usually, this is a leak originating from a higher point on the toilet, but the water will reach the floor eventually.

Beyond that, please refer to the above suggestions to “Work the problem” and determine the root of the issue.

#3. RV Toilet Leaking Between Bowl and Base

A problem with a leak originating halfway down an RV toilet is an unusual one for sure.

Commonly, this is with a Dometic 310 toilet leaking between the bowl and base. It’s one of the main Dometic 310 toilet problems. This is confirmed where the seam is located on this model. Look at where the porcelain bowl meets the plastic base material.

This type of leak is not considered a fault per se and isn’t expected to be repairable by the toilet’s owner. Some professional RV repairers might be able to help.

Conclusion: The best advice is to use an RTV silicone sealant (affiliate link) smeared over the seam to avoid anything inside it creating the potential for a future leak. Ultimately, this is a good preventative measure, but when not doing it early enough and the seam starts to go, it’s already too late and a replacement RV toilet will be needed.

#4. RV Toilet Leaks When Flushed

Flushing the toilet adds pressure to the toilet system. This can reveal RV toilet leaks when flushed that aren’t happening otherwise.

There are a few possible causes of leaks that occur only when flushing:

Improper or Loose Fitting – The bolts used to secure the RV toilet to the floor may have never been sufficiently tightened or worked loose over the years.

Conclusion: Tightening up everything could fix the issue and stop the leaking.

Cracked Bowl – Microfractures in the RV toilet bowl might not let water escape normally. However, the pressure of flushing could be opening wider fractures and permitting water to leak out.

Conclusion: If the toilet bowl is indeed fractured, it will only worsen with time. While a sealant could be used, (affiliate link) that’s only a temporary fix. We’d suggest a replacement RV toilet is the only permanent solution here. Otherwise, you’ll regularly wake up to a flooded bathroom floor and longer-term moisture damage to worry about too.

Broken Flange – The flange creates an external seal. When it begins to fail, there’s not much that can be done other than to replace it with a new one.

Conclusion: The flange could be inferior, deteriorated, or coming apart. We’d suggest replacing the closet flange to solve the problem.

#5. RV Toilet Bubbles When Flushed

There are a few different possibilities when bubbles appear when flushing the RV toilet:

Black Tank is Near Capacity – When the tank is almost full, the sudden addition of more water waste where there’s little space for it forces air bubbles to surface. Essentially, they’ve got nowhere else to go. You’ll also get an indication of this because the smell will be pungent too.

Conclusion: Dump your black tank as soon as possible and the problem should disappear.

Black Water Tank Vent is Blocked – The RV black water tank vent could be blocked by little animals making a home there. In the fall, this vent often gets blocked by fallen leaves and mulch too.

Conclusion: Remove the black water vent and clean it. Then refit it again.

Black Tank Has Debris – Various debris can accumulate at the bottom of the tank and refuse to get flushed out. This can cause a blockage and create bubbles feeding back up to the toilet bowl.

Conclusion: Use a wand sprayer to help dislodge gunk that won’t break up otherwise. This PS-Camco Flexible Swivel Stick to flush clean a black tank is ideal. (affiliate link)

Drain Pipe is Clogged – The drain pipe can also become clogged up with time from debris that accumulates.

Conclusion: Again, the wand sprayer can work wonders here. (affiliate link)

Broken Vacuum Breaker – The RV toilet vacuum breaker prevents clean water from mixing with dirty water. It’s usually fitted adjacent to the water valve, so it’s easy to locate.

Conclusion: If it’s broken, then it’ll need replacing.

Why Does an RV Toilet Foot Pedal Leak?

When it comes to an RV toilet leaking from pedal and water pooling on the floor, the most common causes are either a build-up of residue that usually shifts after a few flushes or the intake valve has malfunctioned or broken.

The residue or sediment only builds up with a lack of use of RV toilets – for instance, if the RV is only occasionally used for short vacations and otherwise sits in the driveway. This is confirmed to be the case, or not, after a few flushes.

The intake valve can become broken or damaged due to several possible causes. These are as follows:

Metal rust – RV toilets are mostly produced using either rubber or polymer, but the occasional part is still made from metal. The original intake valve is often metal and so can rust with water exposure.

A secondary toilet issue could have subjected the valve to additional moisture that accelerated the onset of rust too. To avoid rust in the future, use a lubricant that’s sprayed on the valve.

Wear and tear – It doesn’t matter what part of the RV it is, it will experience the bumpy road, moisture effects, and a host of other issues.

So, wear and tear is definitely a factor. Just going over a country road with vibrations shaking the entire RV won’t do anything much good!

Winter or colder temperatures – The cold or extreme temperatures down to freezing or below can cause an intake valve to freeze and break. The colder temperatures may cause parts to become fragile and develop cracks as a result.

Alternatively, when ice forms either inside or surrounding the valve and it then thaws, this creates pressure that could cause a crack.

Failing to use RV antifreeze in the winter can easily play havoc with your RV toilet’s intake valve (and other components too).

Also Read: How to Protect RV Skylights from Hail?

What to Do If Your Camper Toilet is Leaking

With a leaking camper toilet in the pedal area, it’s not something that can just be left. An RV toilet flush valve leaking is the likely cause. It won’t self-correct if given additional time to do so.

Unless you’ve left the camper or motorhome a few months without use, then it’s not a residue build-up problem either. Almost certainly it’s due to the RV toilet valve leaking.

With a camper toilet valve leaking, here are some initial suggestions:

Try Some Lubricant on the Intake Valve

While you can add a lubricant to the valve to free it up, if it’s become stuck and won’t open or close properly, that’s not likely to be due to a lack of lubricant.

There’s nothing to stop you from using an appropriate lubricant and giving it a try first, but if that doesn’t change anything, then probably the RV toilet leaking water valve has gone bad.

Read Also: How to Stay Warm in a Camper Shell

Repairing the Valve Isn’t Usually Worth the Bother

Even if you’ve got a valuable Dometic RV toilet leaking at the foot pedal, the cost to call out an RV plumber for a toilet repair doesn’t make economic sense.

An RV toilet water valve repair should be avoided.

Replacement valves are relatively inexpensive to replace and fit compared to paying plumber fees for a bad valve.

Also, it isn’t worth trying to remove it and fix it yourself; even if you’re great at DIY. Furthermore, on the road, most people won’t own the right tools for the job anyway.

Also Read: Can You Flush a Tampon Down a Camper Toilet?

RV Toilet Valve Replacement

When your RV toilet foot pedal leaking is confirmed but the pedal itself is undamaged, then most likely the valve’s broken.

A valve replacement will be necessary to resolve an RV toilet with a foot pedal leak. If causes such as rust, wear & tear, or cold temperatures seem to ring true to you, then that’s even more confirmation.

Here are some valve kit suggestions tailored to popular RV toilet brands and models:

Dometic Valve Kit for the Dometic 300 or 310 RV Toilets (385311641)

If you own a Dometic 300 or Dometic 310 RV toilet, then a Dometic RV toilet foot pedal repair involves purchasing a valve kit designed to fit either of these two models (the valves are interchangeable).

There is a Dometic valve replacement kit. It’s not always in stock, so we’re also showing an alternative produced by another company that will fit these Dometic toilets too.

Dometic 385311641 Water Valve Kit for 300 and 310-Series Toilets

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Read Also: Should I Run a Dehumidifier in My RV?

Beech Lane Valve Kit for the Dometic 300, 310, or 320 RV Toilets (385311641/‎BL-110-Master)

Alternatively, the Beech Lane valve kit will fit the Dometic 300, 310, and 320 Series RV toilets too.

It’s often available when the official Dometic version is not. We include this here because when your toilet is leaking, it’s not something that typically can wait until the product is back in stock.

Therefore, it’s good to have alternatives too.

Beech Lane Upgraded Water Valve Kit 385311641/‎BL-110-Master for Dometic Toilets 300, 310, and 320

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Valve Kit for the Dometic/Sealand 506+, 510, 511H, 547+, 548+, EvoVac 146-149, and Multiple VacuFlush Model RV Toilets (385314349)

The Dometic Water Valve Assembly part is designed to fit scores of Dometic and Sealand RV toilet models to replace the valve installation.

In a situation where the valve is faulty and needs swapping out, this Dometic-branded valve provides the best quality replacement.

A replacement ball and shaft kit and/or a new floor flange seal may also be needed.

This Water Valve Assembly is one of the more popular Dometic VacuFlush parts. It’s designed to fit the following Dometic/Sealand RV toilet models :

  • Dometic 506+, 510+, 511 H, 547+, 548+
  • Dometic 706, 709, 748, 749
  • Dometic Sealand 806, 808, 847, 848
  • Dometic Sealand 1147 & 1148
  • Dometic Sealand 2010, 2011
  • Dometic Sealand VacuFlush 5006, 5047, 5048 & 5049
  • Dometic Sealand VacuFlush 168, 606, 647, 648, 1006, 1008, 1047, 1048, 1049, 1106, 5146, 5147 & 5148
  • Dometic Sealand EcoVac 146-149
Dometic/Sealand Water Valve Assembly – White (Part number 385314349)

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Valve Kit for the Thetford Aqua-Magic IV RV Toilet (13168)

To resolve Thetford RV toilet valve issues, there is both a Thetford official valve kit and a Beech Lane one too.

For Thetford toilet problems, the valve kits do vary depending on the model of RV toilet that you own. A complete Thetford RV toilet valve replacement is required, but care must be taken.

By matching the respective Thetford or Beech Lane valve kits to your Thetford toilet model, it’s possible to get the necessary Thetford Aqua Magic IV water valve replacement.

We’ve done that already for you.

The RV toilet valve kit below is for the Thetford Aqua-Magic IV model. This is the Beech Lane version:

Beech Lane Upgraded Toilet Water Valve Kit for Thetford Aqua Magic IV Toilets (Part number 13168)

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Valve Kit aka Water Module Assembly for the Thetford Aqua-Magic V RV Toilet (31705)

The valve kit for the Thetford Aqua-Magic V model is referred to as a Water Module Assembly. Don’t let that put you off. It is a similar valve replacement to the others included in the article.

This RV toilet replacement part is designed specifically as a Thetford Aqua Magic V water valve replacement. Also, it’s under the Thetford brand, so quality should be assured:

Thetford Aqua-Magic V Toilet Water Module Assembly – White (Part number 31705)

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Also Read: Showering in an RV

RV Toilet Foot Pedal Repair

With an RV toilet foot pedal repair, the pedal itself can become damaged or broken. Or it could be that the RV toilet foot pedal fell off.

Here is what to do in either situation:

RV Toilet Foot Pedal Fell Off

When the foot pedal has fallen off, it could be simply that it worked itself loose and eventually fell off.

Driving off-road where the toilet was being bounced around with the RV’s movement could have completed that process. Then, the next time you go to use the facilities, you discover the foot pedal on the floor.

Try refitting it in the correct position. The process will be similar for several models from the same toilet brand (Dometic, Thetford, etc.).

Refer to the product manual to ascertain the correct actions to take.

Avoid trying to force the pedal into position, because you’re more likely to either break the pedal or the seating it’s supposed to slot onto.

And if the seating is subsequently broken, then likely an RV toilet replacement will be required.

RV Toilet Foot Pedal Repair

If the pedal is broken into sections, it’s possible to use Gorilla Glue or super glue to get it back into working condition.

However, a pedal repair for an RV toilet is tough to complete successfully. This is because the amount of foot pressure when depressing the pedal to flush the RV toilet will now more easily break it in the future.

It is one of the more common Dometic 310 toilet problems, but other toilet manufacturers and models aren’t immune to this either.

Pedals can only take so much punishment and will wear out or break with years of repeated use.

To avoid having to repeatedly try to fix a broken foot pedal on a Dometic, Thetford, or another brand, an RV toilet foot pedal replacement might be the solution.

Unfortunately, it’s a classic good news/bad news situation:

The good news is that fitting a new foot pedal isn’t difficult once it’s in hand. The embedded video lower down in this section explains how it’s performed on a Thetford Aqua Magic Style II (other models and brands will be similar).

The bad news is that some Dometic models don’t offer replacement pedals and require a replacement RV toilet. With some other brands, only a pedal cover is available.

By the time a foot pedal is causing repeated issues and depending on the toilet’s age, it might finally be time to purchase a new RV toilet. Just like with an RV, once it reaches a certain age or number of miles/uses, the list of issues will only grow with time and increase in frequency too.

Note: Please be aware that the RV toilet pedals & pedal covers are specific to only certain makes & models. They won’t fit the other ones not listed.

Considerable care has been taken to locate the correct toilet replacement part for the more popular RV toilet models. Sometimes, even the listing information isn’t as complete as one would like.

This can be the case with replacement parts infrequently purchased because most buyers will simply replace the RV toilet with a new one, given that older RV toilets don’t hold up well.

Here are some of the foot pedal covers and foot pedal kits available (some cable kit replacements also included) for different RV toilets:

Dometic 300 Pedestal Cover Kit Replacement (385311656)

A replacement flush pedal is not made by Dometic for their 300 Series.

However, a pedestal cover kit is available to replace a damaged pedestal cover where the pedal itself is still intact and proven functional.

If your Dometic 300 Series RV toilet has a broken foot pedal, then it is time to replace it with a new RV toilet.

Here is the Dometic 300 Series pedestal cover kit:

Dometic 300 Pedestal Cover Kit – White (Part number 385311656)

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Dometic 311 and Dometic 510H Foot Pedal and Cover Kit Replacement (385311119)

There are foot pedal and cover kit replacements designed for the Dometic 311 Series and Dometic 510H Series models.

The pedal cover kit will solve a cracked pedal cover for either the 311 or 510H models. Here it is:

Dometic 311 and Dometic 510H Foot Pedal Cover Kit – White (Part number 385311119)

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Dometic 510 Foot Pedal Cover Kit Replacement (385310114)

The Dometic 510 Series RV toilet has the option of a foot pedal cover replacement.

The cover can replace a cracked or broken pedal cover, to support ongoing use just as long as the underlying pedal hardware is still functional and undamaged, i.e. only the pedal cover is broken.

The product is difficult to source, at times, because it’s not frequently purchased due to customers opting to buy a new RV toilet instead.

Here is the Dometic 510 foot pedal cover kit:

Dometic 510 Foot Pedal Cover Kit – White (Part number 385310114)

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Tall Base Pedal Cover Replacement for Dometic/Sealand 510+, 547+, 548+, 808 & Multiple VacuFlush Models (385310115)

The Dometic/Sealand Foot pedal tall base pedal cover replacement is intended for toilets with an elevated base that has a metal flush lever.

This Dometic part number 385310115 provides a new cover to replace a broken one. The part will neither be suitable for a short base toilet nor one that doesn’t feature a metal lever.

If the problem is with the metal flush lever itself, then it will either need a specialist or replace the RV toilet with a new one.

However, if it’s only the cover that’s damaged, then this part will solve that for the following, compatible Dometic RV toilet models:

  • Dometic/Sealand 510+, 547+, 548+, 808, 847, 848
  • Dometic/Sealand 2010
  • Dometic/Sealand VacuFlush 1006, 1008, 1047, 1048 & 1049
Sealand Bone Pedal Cover Kit – Bone color (Part number 385310115)

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Replacement Foot Flush Pedal for a Thetford Aqua-Magic IV RV Toilet (33198)

A replacement foot pedal for a Thetford Aqua-Magic IV model is the best option when the existing pedal is lost or broken.

The part below replaces a broken or damaged pedal with a new one:

Thetford Aqua-Magic IV Foot Flush Pedal – White (Part number 33198)

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This is the newest Thetford Aqua Magic model video we could find for you.

Foot Pedal Flush Repair Kit/Cable Package for a Thetford Aqua-Magic IV RV Toilet (24571)

To perform a foot pedal repair on a Thetford Aqua-Magic IV model, purchasing the Thetford 24571 RV toilet package is advisable.

It includes two replacement cables, and other parts to complete a solid repair of the mechanism that allows the foot pedal to activate the flushing process. When the RV toilet won’t flush and it’s the flush mechanism at fault, this package is designed to resolve that.

Thetford Aqua-Magic IV Foot Flush Repair Package (Part number 24571)

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Thetford Flush Pedal Kit For Aqua-Magic V RV Toilet (31709)

Thetford produces a genuine pedal kit to replace a broken one for their Aqua-Magic V model of RV toilet.

It is a basic kit and isn’t difficult to fit. It includes the pedal itself, and fittings to replace it.

Here is the Thetford Aqua-Magic V Foot Pedal Replacement:

Thetford Foot Pedal for Aqua Magic V – White (Part number 31709)

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Thetford Flush Pedal Cable Kit for the Aqua-Magic V RV Toilet (31711)

When the cable has broken, then it cannot be successfully fixed.

Instead, replacing it with a new Thetford Flush Pedal Cable Kit for the Aqua-Magic V is required. The toilet won’t flush with a broken cable. This replacement cable will solve that for you:

Thetford Flush Pedal Cable Kit for Aqua Magic V (Part number 31711)

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Replacement RV Toilet

When it’s clear that an RV toilet repair would only be a temporary solution with more water leaks in the future, many RVers make the pragmatic decision to replace their RV toilet.

Here are some popular replacement RV toilet models to choose from:

Dometic 320 RV Toilet

The Dometic 320 RV toilet provides affordability with solid features.

A step up from the 310 Series, there is both a standard height and a sleek, low-profile version. Also, a hand sprayer can be added.

With a residential-style toilet seat and Ceramic bowl, it screams quality and durability. The two-bolt base also makes the Dometic 320 RV toilet simpler to install.

Also, there’s a choice of white or creamy bone colors to help this toilet fit into the existing decor.

Dometic 320 Series Standard Height RV Toilet, White (Part number 302320081)

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Dometic 510 Plus China RV Toilet

The Dometic/Sealand 510 Plus model provides a touch of luxury being made from China material.

It also only uses half a liter of water per flush, is partially self-cleaning, and has an elongated bowl.

The seat is larger than most in its class too. Because it’s made from porcelain china, the weight is around 50 pounds. So, this RV toilet will be best installed in a motorhome bathroom, rather than in a camper or trailer.

The Dometic/Sealand 510 Plus is a classy option:

Dometic 510 Plus China Toilet – White (Part number 302651001)

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Dometic/Sealand 975MSD Portable RV Toilet

The Sealand 975MSD uses plastic as its building material and clocks in at a light 13 pounds. With a two-tone, off-white, and grey color scheme, it’s no aesthetic slouch; the finish is matte and ardently resists scratches too.

Its push-button flush system is supported by a 5.0-gallon capacity (18.9 liters). Each flush only uses a pint of water (0.4 of a liter for those keeping scores). It has an adult-sized toilet seat.

Also, there’s a water tank level indicator at the front, near the flushing button.

While Sealand is part of Dometic, they’re largely still operated separately. Some people feel that Sealand branded toilets are of a higher quality compared to Dometic RV toilets.

This Sealand 975MSD model is better than most portable RV toilets available:

Dometic Sealand 975MSD Portable Toilet. Grey with Brackets – 5.0 Gallons

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Thetford Aqua-Magic Residence RV Toilet with a High Profile

The Aqua-Magic Residence is made from Polypropylene, so it’s lighter than many other models. As such, it’s a good option for campers or travel trailers where the installed weight is a factor.

The pedal system is neat here. Depressing the foot pedal halfway adds more water to the toilet bowl whereas fully depressing it activates the flushing action.

The seat has antimicrobial protection to reduce the potential for bacteria to hang around there. A nice touch. A hand sprayer is also an optional extra with the Thetford Aqua-Magic Residence RV Toilet too:

Thetford Aqua-Magic Residence RV Toilet with a High Profile – White (Part number 42169)

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Thetford Aqua-Magic V RV Toilet with a Pedal Flush in a High Profile Design

This version of the Aqua-Magic V comes with a front-facing enlarged pedal for easy access. The high profile at 18.5 inches avoids hurting your knees when pitting on your bathroom throne.

Made from plastic, this toilet is light at 9.5 pounds. The seat is a pleasing size and is angled higher at the rear for greater comfort. An optional hand sprayer can reduce the water used too.

The Thetford Aqua-Magic V RV toilet is an excellent choice for RVers looking for functional, light, and presentable in a single package. There’s also easy access to parts including replacement foot pedals and cables to keep the toilet usable for many years:

Thetford Aqua-Magic V RV Toilet with a Pedal Flush. High Profile design – White (Part number 31671)

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How to Better Maintain Your RV Toilet

Here are some quick reminders on how to take better care of your RV toilet.

  1. Use it regularly to avoid any residue build-up near the valve or associated components. This can help to prevent some of the common issues.
  2. Add lubricant to the valve and other necessary toilet parts (and others in the bathroom, where appropriate) as a once-a-month maintenance activity. Doing this prevents many different bathroom issues from cropping up.
  3. Ensure that you add RV antifreeze to all the lines, the toilet, and even the toilet sprayer to avoid them seizing up during the winter and becoming unusable after the thawing process has been completed. It prevents many toilet-related issues.

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