Kohler Touchless Toilet Will Not Flush

Technology can and does fail us every once in a while, and touchless toilets are no exception. Although Kohler Touchless Toilets are fantastic products, they sometimes refuse to flush. But what causes this problem, and how can you resolve it?

Kohler Touchless Toilets will not flush if the sensor fails to activate the touchless flush. Most often, the problem is caused by installing a tank cover within 5 to 10 seconds of the last actuation. It is also possible the module has been incorrectly positioned.

This article will explain why Kohler Touchless Toilets sometimes fail to flush and give you solutions to deal with the problem. 

How Kohler Touchless Toilet Flushes Work

water flushes the toilet

The Kohler Touchless Toilet has a sensor that reads the movement of your hand over the tank and sends a signal to the module. This module then actuates the flush by lifting the valve lid and letting water in through the valve. 

Many types of toilet flushing systems are available in the market. You can read more about them in this article about types of toilet flush systems. Not all of them, however, are compatible with the Kohler Touchless Toilet Flush Kit.

Two gravity-flushing mechanisms that are compatible with the Kohler Touchless Toilet Kit are discussed below:

Flapper Flushes 

The most common and simplest type of flush is a flapper flush. It has a flap or a lid that sits atop the opening through which the water flows out. The cover is attached to the touchless toilet module by a chain. This chain pulls the lid open and causes the toilet to flush when you hover your hand over the sensor.

Canister Flushes 

A canister flush is an upgraded version of the gravity flush. As the name suggests, the system uses a canister that covers the water inlet. Manual canister flushes tend to have a double flush system wherein push-down buttons raise the canister to different levels. This provides two different levels of water inflow.

When the Kohler Touchless Toilet Kit is attached to a canister flush system, the module is linked to the canister using a chain. Like a flapper flush, the module senses your hand movement and lifts the canister to allow water flow. 

How To Fix A Kohler Touchless Toilet That Is Not Flushing 

Your Kohler Touchless Toilet may not be flushing for one of three reasons. These are:

The Module Has Run Out of Battery 

It might seem obvious, but if your Kohler Touchless Toilet runs out of battery, it will not work. Since the module is a battery-operated device, the lack of power from batteries will most definitely cause it to stop working. 

If a drained battery is the cause of the problem:

  1. Remove the tank lid and take the module out
  2. Open the battery compartment and remove the old batteries
  3. Replace the drained batteries with fresh ones
  4. Reinstall the module and test it 

Your toilet should now flush. If it doesn’t, the problem lies elsewhere. There can be two other reasons why your flush may not work.

remote control with buttons of the smart toilet bowl

Improper Tank Cover Being Installation

As per Kohler’s user instructions, there needs to be a minimum of 15 seconds between the last actuation and the tank being covered. If the tank lid is installed too early, the Kohler Touchless Toilet may fail to flush.

If improper tank cover installation is the cause of a malfunctioning flush:

  1. Remove the tank cover 
  2. Reinstall it after at least 15 seconds have passed since the most recent cycle
  3. Wait for a minimum of 5 minutes after this 

After 5 minutes have passed, the module calibrates itself automatically. This should resolve the issue, and your tank should flush normally. If this doesn’t solve the problem, there is still one more possible explanation.

The Touchless Module Is Installed Too Low

Another reason your Kohler Touchless Toilet is still not flushing may be the incorrect placement of the module. 

If the module is fixed at too low a height, the flush sensor may not be able to register your hand movement above it. Since the sensor does not receive any stimulus, it cannot provide any command to the module. 

If an incorrectly positioned module is causing the problem, you will need to raise it. The module is attached to the tank with the help of a clip that has notches built into it. Raise the height of the module one notch at a time. Do this until there is about 1 to 2 inches (2.54 to 5.08 cm) of sensor range above the tank cover.

Fixes For Other Common Kohler Touchless Toilet Issues

Besides the previously discussed issue, there are a few other problems common to Kohler Touchless Toilets. Solutions for many of these issues are listed on the  Kohler Customer Support page. 

Phantom Flushing

There are multiple reasons why your Kohler Touchless Toilet may be flushing on its own without any stimulus. These include: 

Water Splashes

When the toilet is refilled, some water may splash onto the touchless module or the tank cover, causing it to flush. This splashing is caused due to the presence of gaps between the refill hose and the flush valve. 

To fix this problem, try one of these methods:

  1. Ensure that you insert the refill hose into the valve, so no gaps are visible. You can also reposition the hose to ensure no splashing.
  2. If you have a Kohler toilet with a black canister cap, replace it with the cap provided in the canister repair kit.
  3. Close the water supply partially to slow down the tank’s refill rate, reducing the splashing.

Internal Condensation

In places with warmer temperatures, the water inside the tank may evaporate and condense on the touchless module. To deal with this, you need to clean the inside of the tank and install foam pads under the tank’s lid to reduce the amount of condensation. 

The Touchless Module Is Too Low/Waterline Is Too High

If the flush module touches the surface of the water in the tank, it may go off. To resolve the issue, ensure the module doesn’t touch the water. 

This can be done by lowering the water levels or raising the height of the module. There should be a minimum of 0.5 inches (1.27 cm) gap between the water and the module.

Toilet Flush

Repeated Flushing

If your Kohler Touchless Toilet keeps flushing after you have actuated, it is most likely because of the same reasons as the Phantom flushing problem discussed in the previous section. Apply the same solutions to fix the problem.

You can read more about repeated flushing in this article about double flushing.

Actuator Wheel Does Not Fully Rotate 

If the flushes actuator wheel is not rotating completely, your toilet will not flush properly. This is usually due to low battery. The flush module indicates it is running low on battery by beeping five times before actuation. So watch out for its warning.

To fix the problem, replace the batteries in the module with new ones. Remember not to use rechargeable batteries in the module.


The Kohler Touchless Toilet Kit is a helpful gadget that makes using the restroom more convenient and hygienic. However, it can come with its own issues.

If your Kohler Touchless Toilet isn’t flushing, it’s usually because the module is running out of battery, flush actuation is taking place too fast, or the module has been installed too low. The solutions outlined in this article will help you deal with the problem in no time.