It's pretty annoying starting out the morning routine when something breaks and throws it off. This particular morning, the handle of the toilet broke, severing the handle from the lever that pulls the chain to the flapper. Of course, it's fairly simple to open the cover to the tank and pull the chain to start the flush. I didn't think my wife would want to have to do that for the rest of the day until I had the chance to replace it.
I looked around the bathroom for a quick fix, channeled my inner Macgyver, and came up with this.
Step 1: Toilet Paper Tube and Dental Floss
This "fix" was never meant to be in place for more than a day. However, there's no reason it wouldn't work for longer. All that is needed for this is a used toilet paper cardboard tube and a length of dental floss (a couple feet are sufficient). The cardboard tube is only used as a handle that isn't too heavy and prevents the floss from slipping back into the tank.
I tied one end of the dental floss to the pull chain to the flapper valve and fished the other end through the hole for the handle. Then I looped the floss around the tube and tied it tight. For a more secure fix, you could poke a hole through the cardboard for the floss to go through so it doesn't slip off.
To flush, just pull the tube and it should lift the flapper valve. Don't pull too hard or the chain could get lodged in the hole.
Step 2: Fix It Properly
As much as I love my toilet paper tube flush handle, I knew I had to make the permanent fix. I picked up a new handle from Lowe's Home Improvement ~$17:
There are plenty of compatible repair handles out there, but I picked this one due to its stoutness. The repair was really easy. I removed what remained of the old handle threaded hole and inserted the new one. This handle had a couple of clips that hold the handle to the lever and adjust the angle. I was able to leave the angle as it was, but other tanks may need adjustment for it to be compatible. The chain hooked into the end of the lever like the old one. The new handle works great! I admit it "handles" better than my original fix.