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    A Guide to Replacing Your Home’s Toilet

    August 1, 2018


    If you’re a homeowner, chances are that at some point you’re going to have to replace your toilet. It may be leaking or it may be getting old. Below are the steps that you’ll take to replace your toilet and the tools and materials you’ll need.

    Tools You’ll Need

    • Adjustable wrench
    • Hacksaw
    • Plunger
    • Putty knife
    • Rag
    • Rubber gloves
    • Slip-joint pliers

    Materials You’ll Need

    Disconnect Your Supply Line

    Once you have turned off your water at your shutoff, flush your toilet so that most of the water is removed from the bowl and tank. There will be a bit of water left in your bowl. Use your force-cup plunger so that the water’s forced into your drain line. Remove the water that remains from your tank using a bucket and sponge.

    Remove Your Old Toilet

    You’ll have to pop off your toilet’s trim caps at its base so that you can remove your old toilet. Then you want to loosen up and remove the washers and nuts on the toilet’s closet bolts which secure it to your floor. If you have rusty bolts, it’s possible that you’re going to have to remove them using a hacksaw. If you are working alone, you want to disconnect your tank from your bowl before you disconnect and remove your bowl. It’s going to be a lot easier to lift those pieces separately.
    Once you have removed your washers and nuts on either side of your bowl, rock your toilet gently until you’re able to lift it up. Once the toilet’s removed, there’s going to be a line that’s open to your sewer system. If you take a rag and stuff it down into the hole you can prevent sewer gasses from coming into your home and keep your tools from falling in the hole.

    Put in a Brand-New Wax Seal

    Take your putty knife and use it to pry up and remove your existing wax seal. Inspect the underneath flange to ensure it isn’t cracked. Once you have done this, remove your rag from your hole. If you have a cracked flange, call your plumber. If your flange is okay, remove your rag and remove your closet bolts from your flange. Install your wax seal and then hook your new closet bolts in the slots on your flange.
    Important: Don’t forget to remove your rag before you install the new seal. If you leave it in, it’s going to be a costly but common mistake.

    Attach Your Bowl and Tank

    With your seal and closet bolts in their places, you’ll be able to attach your bowl and tank to assemble your new toilet. Slide your tank bolts through the openings in your tank’s bottom. Line up the bolt’s shank with the holes that are in your toilet’s bowl and then drop your tank in place. Secure your tank to your bowl by tightening nuts on each of your tank bolts. All of the nuts should be evenly tightened until your tank is resting firmly on your bowl.

    Secure Your Toilet & Complete Installation

    1. Put your assembled toilet on your flange assembly and make sure that your closet bolts, that are coming up through your floor, are lining up with the holes in its base.
    2. Press your toilet lightly into place so that a good seal is formed with your wax ring.
    3. Put a nut and a couple washers on each of your bolts. Secure the nuts using your small wrench, but make sure they’re not overtightened. If your bolts are extending far over your nuts and washers, the excess should be removed using your hacksaw.
    4. Pop your trim caps where they should go so that the ends of your bolts are covered.
    5. Secure your new lid and seat using mounting bolts
    6. Use your slip-point pliers and reconnect your supply line and your tank’s bottom.

    These are the steps that you will take when you are replacing a toilet. They’ll help it go a lot smoother for you and give you the guidance that you need to get the job done.

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