Toilet Installation: professional plumbing advise
Toilet installation needed? It is not very difficult to install a toilet, all you need to do is follow the right steps, and you will be good to go! You might be looking into toilet installation jobs or just trying to follow a toilet installation YouTube video. Below are a few guides and steps on how to complete a toilet installation DIY.
- What is the Toilet?
- Dimensions for a Toilet Installation
- How to perform a 1 piece toilet installation
- How to perform a 2 piece toilet installation
- How To Replace A Toilet
- Removing the water from the toilet
- It is time to remove the toilet
- What is a Toilet Installation Flange?
- Complete a Toilet Fit Test
- Time To Apply The Wax Ring
- Place the Toilet
- Connect the Plumbing Fixtures
- Existing Toilet Removal
- Different Types Of Toilet
- Flushing Systems For Toilets
- Dual-Flush Toilet
- Double Cyclone Toilet
- Gravity Fed Toilet
- Macerating Toilet
- Pressure-Assisted Toilet
- Vented Toilets
- Waterless Toilet
- Common Smart Toilet Options and Features
- Height Consideration
- Remote Control Toilets
- Conceal Fixture for Trap way
- Self-Cleaning Toilet
- Hands-Free Toilet Flush
What is the Toilet?
A toilet is basically a bathroom fixture whose main purpose is to collect bodily waste (urine and feces) and transport it to the sewage. The toilet is constructed in such a way, which makes the process of expelling waste from the human body sanitary, safe, and convenient. There are so many different kinds of toilets in the market. We will be discussing the different types and their installation process.
Dimensions for a Toilet Installation
The typical toilet installation dimensions or measurements are the standard 10″, 12″, or 14″ for a rough in. To find the appropriate measurement for you, measure from the middle of the bolts behind the toilet to the wall. This will give you a rough measurement for your toilet placement.
How to perform a 1 piece toilet installation
1-piece toilets can be quite heavy to carry, so it is advised that you have a partner with you, as it can be quite the workout. It could either be a 3-bolt toilet installation or more. To install a 1 piece toilet, all you need to follow the instructions and guidelines carefully, and you should have a brand new toilet.
- First things first, it is important that you remove the old wax ring and make sure you scrape it off as hard as you can.
- If your holes are too small or too close, then you might want to dig holes into the floor, near the flange for your bolts and nuts. Take your wax ring, remove its packaging, and stick it onto the toilet base.
- You might need a partner for this step, but what you need to do is put the toilet over the flange to check that it aligns.
- After doing this, get the nuts and washer and tighten it unto the toilet properly. Use your hands first, and if it is not tight enough, you can use a wrench to tighten it as well. Try not to make it too tight as it can cause damage or crack the toilet.
- If your toilet has covers for the bolts, then you stick the hook and loop adhesive into place.
- Some toilets come with the double flush mechanism already installed, if yours doesn’t, you might need to put it together and install it. When you attach them together, install it into its place.
- Installing the toilet seat is a relatively easy process. Attach the plastic screw anchors to the toilet seat, and then use the hinges to attach it to the toilet.
How to perform a 2 piece toilet installation
For a 2 piece toilet to be installed, you must go through three phases. The phases include:
- Securing the base of the toilet to the floor
- After that, the tank must be connected to the base and fastened
- The toilet must be connected to the water supply so that the toilet can be filled with water.
To complete a 2 piece toilet installation appropriately, you must read all the instructions in the toilet package and make sure all the parts needed are complete.
- Firstly, if there is a rag or dirty cloth in the flange hole in the floor, remove it.
- It is important to remove any old wax or debris still remaining around the flange and the flange itself. The scrape of the wax if you have to.
- After removing any debris left around the area, find the bolts closest to the flange and turn the t-shaped head of each bolt there. This will enable it to slip out easily from the flange. After it slips out, push the bolt into the slot in a way that it slides into a position that makes it parallel to the wall at the back of the toilet. After doing that, turn the bolt and make sure that it is secure enough that the head cannot be pulled out easily.
- After holding the bolt in place, take the toilet and turn it upside down, making sure to rest it on a padded surface to prevent damage.
- Find the toilet horn that is located in the middle of the base of the toilet. When you locate it, attach the wax ring to the toilet horn, as well as its sleeve and make sure to press it down firmly.
The wax ring that is attached and fitted around the toilet horn will continue to compress the drain flange, as it is pressed downwards to the floor and then bolted into place. After bolting it into place, you must make sure that the plastic spout is facing up.
The process of inserting and compressing the wax ring can only be done one time, as it will not spring back again. This means that it is important to get it at the first try before the ring is compressed.
The most important part is ensuring that your sealing is done properly, is lowering the toilet to the drain flange with changing or disturbing it.
- After the wax ring is attached and the sealing is done properly, it is time to lower the base of the toilet to the flange. This will be done by aligning the toilet base to the closest bolts with holes on it.
- You might require another hand when you get to this part. Your partner will help line up the bolts to the holes to the toilet base, as the toilet is lowered unto the floor. You must make sure that you maintain the base level when you’re lowering it to the floor.
- All you need to do now is gently place the base down to the wax ring.
- It is time to put the carpenter’s level across the base of the toilet. This will help to ensure that the bow is within the required level. When this is completed, you can place nuts on the bolts and place the washers as well. Depending on how tight you want it, you can use an adjustable wrench to tighten all sides with nuts in bolts. Try not to tighten the bolts over though, because this can cause damage to the toilet and crack the base.
- Take your trim caps and cover the bolts. If the trim caps are not long enough to cover the bolts available, you can reduce the length using a hacksaw.
- If your toilet has a flush mechanism, this will be tube time to install it, else leave it if your toilet already comes with it installed (most come with it already installed).
- Now it is time to attach the spud washer (rubber seal), and you will need to turn the tank upside down and attach it to the pipe. It will be attached to the pipe that is sticking out of the bottom of the tank.
- Turn the tank back to the correct side and make sure to center the spud washer over the opening for the water intake. This is located at the toilet base (back edge).
- After the spud washer is put correctly, lower the tank till it aligns with the back of the bowl. The rubber washers and tank bolts must be aligned together with the holes in the tank. After they are aligned, insert the tank bolts through the bowl holes.
- Under the side of the toilet bowl, while tightening with your hand at first, thread on the nuts and washers. If you don’t think it’s tight enough, use a large wrench to tighten it.
- Try not to over tighten it to avoid cracking. Make sure that you’re not turning the bolts but the nut. Depending on the kind of 2 piece toilet you buy, it might come with pre-installed mounting bolts. Some others don’t come that way, and require to you to install the bolts yourself.
- It is time to connect the shut-off valve and supply tube by fastening the shut-off valve and compression fitting together, and the nut (coupling) to tank fitting. Tighten it first by hand, and then you can use a wrench.
You can either get it in braided stainless steel or white stainless. They are better than using plain or standard plastic tubes.
- Now that the toilet is attached turn on the water supply to fill the tank. The stop valve controls the water inlet. Filling of the tank will help you to check for leaks and watch how the toilet fills with water.
When it gets to a point, the flow of water should begin to reduce and stop eventually when it hits the mark. If you see that it is still leaking, you can tighten the bolts a bit, but not too much.
- Adjust the water level according to the manufacturer’s direction. Depending on the kind of valve you have, it might come with either a setscrew or float arm.
- Now you can install the toilet seat, and all you need to do is insert the seat bolts through the holes of the base of the toilet. Screw in the nuts with your hand and then tighten with a large screwdriver.
How To Replace A Toilet
Despite the fact that toilet is a necessity in any house, building, commercial or residential, after some time because of wear and tear, these durable fixtures will need replacement. You might want to replace it because it is broken, or you’re trying to change the design, or it’s just wasting a lot of water now. If it is just a leaking problem, then you might not need to replace the whole toilet, all you need to do is change the wax ring, although this change will require you to remove and reinstall the toilet.
Supplies needed for this procedure:
- A partner (toilets are very large)
- Hacksaw blade
- Closet flange
- Adjustable wrench
- Wax ring
- Putty knife
- Large sponge
- Plumber’s putty
Removing the water from the toilet
This is the first step to reinstalling or removing a toilet. You must drain all existing water from the toilet. To do this:
- Turn off the valve that controls water inlet into the toilet, or you can turn off the main water supply control into the house.
- To empty the tank of the toilet, flush it.
- Take off the lid of the tank carefully and put it away.
- Use a mop or rag to mop out the water left over in the tank, or you can use a large sponge that absorbs the water. Squeeze the sponge out so that the water leaves it and goes into a bucket and repeat this process all over again. You must continue this process until there is no more water left in the tank and it is dry.
It is time to remove the toilet
After drying out the tank, the next step is to remove the toilet. You will need to remove the mounting bolts holding the toilet in place. If you are very careful and have the strength for it, you can lift the connected toilet and tank together. This way can be a little difficult, as the tank can get cracked where it connected to the toilet bowl with bolts.
If this method is too difficult for you, disconnect the tank first from the toilet bowl, and then remove the bowl itself.
- The water supply tube must be disconnected from the toilet tank itself. This can be done using an adjustable wrench or pliers
- After disconnecting the supply tube, remove the cover caps (plastic or porcelain) covering the bolt to the floor. If the nuts are too tight, use an adjustable wrench to unfasten it. If you’re trying to remove the nuts and it’s impossible because it has become rusted, you can use a hacksaw to cut off the bolts below the nuts.
- It is time for your partner to help because this part might be difficult to do on your own. You and your partner will lift the toilet bowl and tank off the floor and closet flange bolts, which secures the toilet base to the floor.
- Move the toilet bowl and tank away from its position and place it on a stack of newspaper or a large rag to prevent it from staining your floor area. Make sure that you lay it on the side or back so that all sides of the toilet are supported.
- Scrape off the plumber’s putty and wax ring that is left at the bottom of the toilet. Also, scrape off the plumber’s patty and old wax from the flange attached to the floor as well.
- Check the flange for wear and tear or damage. If there is a problem with it, you can repair or replace it.
What is a Toilet Installation Flange?
The flange is a plastic or metal fitting fixture that is attached to the bottom of the toilet and is popularly known as a closet flange. The flange is the main connection between the floor structure and the toilet. Most flanges come with flat sides and square holes (two) that allows for bolts to be slid into it. This function allows the flange to help secure the toilet to the floor by tightening nuts to the bolts. The flanges also come with screws that can drive into the flooring of your bathroom. A toilet installation broken flange can be replaced as they come in different types such as:
- Offset flange
- Repair kit for different types of drain
- Replacement for cast-iron drains
- New closet flange for different types of drain
- Replacement for cast-iron drains
If your flange requires replacement, it is best to find one that is suitable for you. You can go with a replacement part or kit and follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installation.
Complete a Toilet Fit Test
It is time to complete a test fit of the toilet to make sure it is sitting well. To do this, you must put the toilet over the flange and check to ensure both the flange bolts and holes align together.
It is important to make sure that the toilet sits level. You can bend down and level the toilet yourself by putting a washer underneath it.
After checking to see if its level, remove the toilet and place on a stack of papers (so as not to damage your flooring). If the tank is attached, place it on its back or side, if it is not, gently place it upside down.
Time To Apply The Wax Ring
The wax ring is a very important part of the toilet installation guide or process, as it helps to prevent leaking or waste slipping out of the base of the toilet, and also to seal out sewer gases. Depending on the wax ring purchased, some of them are just wax, while others may come with a toilet installation flange built into it for extra adhering properties. If your closet flange is above the flooring, then you need only a plain wax for this, but if the closet flange is on the same level with the flooring, then it is advised that you get a wax ring that comes with a bell or funnel.
The most popular method for installing a wax ring is sticking it to the bottom of the toilet (the horn outlet). The wax ring will come with a paper or plastic packaging, dispose of it and its protection. Ensure that you install the wax ring when the temperature is above 70 degrees. Place the wax ring onto the outlet and press it until it sticks. If the wax ring is damaged during the process of attaching or when it’s taken out of the package, it might not seal properly so you might need to get a new one.
A good tip used by plumbers is setting the wax ring at a warm spot to heat it up a bit and soften it, before sticking it to the discharge outlet of the toilet.
You can also use a different method which involves setting the wax ring on the closet flange first, and then carrying the toilet and placing it on it. With good precision, this can be a relatively easier and less messy method.
You can also incorporate a plumber’s putty into the mix. This method involves adding the plumber’s putty on the bottom of the toilet base, just outside of it. This is done to help seal the toilet to the floor and to avoid leakage if any. You can also choose to caulk the outside of the toilet base if you wish to.
Place the Toilet
After the installation of the wax ring has been completed, it is time to set the toilet in place.
- Make sure that the bolts threaded into the flange in their respective slots are pointing straight up.
- You need your assistant again for this part, as you need to carefully lift the toilet and place it onto the closet flange, making sure that the toilet base holes slip into the flange bolts. As you lower the toilet, it will hit the wax ring. Continue to press it into the wax ring until the toilet is completely connected to the floor. You might need to lie down or bend to align yourself with the bowl to make sure that the placement is okay.
- After placing the toilet on the flange, attach the other plumbing fixtures such as the nut, plastic cover base, washer, and more.
- After attaching the nuts on the bolts, tighten it with your hands. After doing this, grab a wrench and tighten it but don’t make it too tight so the base doesn’t crack.
- Use a rag to clean up any extra plumber’s putty from the base of the toilet.
- If the tank and toilet base are not attached, you can install it now.
Connect the Plumbing Fixtures
After installing the toilet tank, it is time to connect all the remaining plumbing fixtures to the toilet. After doing this, turn on the water supply back and flush the toilet to check that the flusher works and that there is no leak. If there is a leak, you might need to tighten some nuts or start the process all over again.
Depending on the type of toilet you have, most of them come with the flush and fill valve preinstalled in the tank. If the one you bought doesn’t have it, you might need to buy and attach these fittings yourself. It is best to attach and install them before installing the main toilet.
If you choose to, as this is an optional step, you can use some pure silicone caulk to seal around the base of the toilet. Some plumbers prefer to not add the silicone caulk to the back of the toilet in case of any leakage. This way the leak can present itself more readily.
Existing Toilet Removal
If the plumber has to remove an existing toilet, then you might need to pay an additional fee for this procedure. If you’re on a budget, you can follow the steps above and complete a toilet installation DIY. You can also watch a toilet installation video and follow the process shown.
Different Types Of Toilet
There are different types of toilets in the market right now. It could be because you want a more eco-friendly home or trying to save money on the water bill. A typical basic model toilet when flushed uses up to 7 gallons of water. New age toilets now use only between 1.00 to 1.30 gallons of water per flush. With this, you’re not only saving on water bills but also reducing water waste.
As addressed in the beginning, a toilet unit can either be one-piece or two-piece. It is way more expensive to buy a one-piece toilet than it is to purchase a two-piece one. Most toilets manufactured these days either come with an elongated or round bowl. The round bowls are a good option for small spaces, but an elongated bowl is often more comfortable and is better looking overall.
Flushing Systems For Toilets
In the market right now, there are four popular types of toilet flushing systems: dual flush, gravity fed, double cyclone, and pressure assisted. Toilets might look the same, but they function very differently depending on the type you want, or you purchase.
This type of toilet offers a water-saving method for individuals who are eco-friendly or trying to save water. This toilet offers two buttons, one for a bigger flush than the other. The lighter flush can be used for liquid waste and the standard flush for solid waste.
This toilet provides two different flush options for clients and is relatively eco-friendly. An average cost for this toilet is €180, and there are not enough designs and styles for this toilet to choose from.
Double Cyclone Toilet
This toilet works by circulating water through the bowl with the use of jets that work in a cyclone motion. This motion allows it to push and clean everything in the toilet to the exit. This kind of toilet is very specific and not made ready for commercial acquisition, and it is also known as the self-cleaning toilet.
This toilet is relatively expensive, costing an average of €500 or more depending on the design and quality. They offer very effective flushing actions. They help to keep the toilet bowl relatively clean.
Gravity Fed Toilet
Amongst all the different types of toilets, this is the most popular one. This type of toilet makes use of gravity and pulls waste from the toilet bowl through the drain pipes with large amounts of water. This process requires up to six gallons of water per flush, for the gravity to pull the waste. Due to the fact that toilets are now made to be more eco-friendly and save more water, this type of toilet is no longer effective and is used less often.
They do not require a stacked line, are effective if you’re installing toilet upstairs (top floors) and are relatively inexpensive. Not eco-friendly and gravity-fed toilets require a lot of water to function properly. It is also not advisable for toilet installation in basements and ground floors. An average cost for this kind of toilet is €100.
If you want to install a toilet in an area that does not have a traditional waste pipe, then the macerating toilet is the best option. It is good for slab installations, as it cuts of waste into different small particles before pushing them down to a sewer or septic tank. The toilet uses tubes and pipes to move the waste and does not require the installation of a standard waste pipe.
This type of toilet can be installed on any floor, in any building. The average cost for a macerating toilet is €600, which is slightly on the expensive side. They are not enough styles to choose from, and they do not require a waste pipe. For this toilet to be installed, there has to be room in and around the wall.
This is also a type of toilet that works by pushing waste through pipes using street-pressured water. Most people utilize this kind of toilet in their basements or areas where the waste will travel upwards. This type of toilet is often very noisy or loud when used.
Pressure-assisted toilets are often very effective and one of the best options for a basement toilet installation. An average cost for this type of toilet is €250, and they are not eco-friendly, very loud (like toilet flushing sound in a plane), and they require the use of a wider tank.
This toilet uses a gust of air that works like a vacuum to pull the waste through prior to opening for the waste to enter. It is also called a vacuum assist toilet and is a good option for individuals on the first floor of a building. To use this toilet, you will require a stacked line, and this line must exceed the total height of the roof by at least two feet to be the most effective.
Vented toilets are often inexpensive with an average cost of €100. They only use little amounts of water, and they work very efficiently. Unlike the gravity fed toilet, they require a stacked line and are not the best option for basements.
There are also toilets known as composting or waterless toilets. This is a kind of toilet that you install if you don’t want to do any plumbing. The toilet utilizes organic compounds to allow waste decompose, and it is then used for fertilizing non-edible plants. The toilet does not use water; it is mostly used in RVs (replacing toilets in RV) and is also present in outdoor areas. Homeowners seeking to make better eco-friendly decisions are incorporating the waterless toilets in their homes.
This toilet is amongst the most expensive types of toilets, as they cost a whopping €900 or more. They are very eco-friendly, and they require high maintenance. They can also be installed anywhere, in any location.
Common Smart Toilet Options and Features
A nice feature incorporated into the making of toilets by manufacturers is higher toilets. These toilets are good for individuals who are disabled or are generally tall and require a higher toilet installed. Right now, the average cost of a basic toilet with an added two inches begins at €150 and goes higher.
Remote Control Toilets
These are electronic toilets that can be controlled using a remote. This also offers additional functions such as position, temperature, pulsating or oscillating motion, and many more. It can also come with built-in odor control, heated seating, warm air flow, and many more. This can cause anywhere from €1,118 to €4,230, and the heated toilet seats cost ranges from €800 – €7.500.
Conceal Fixture for Trap way
Manufacturers are also now producing toilets with concealed trap ways. The pipes bend in the back so that cannot be seen unless you actually kneel and look at it. The price ranges from €250 to €500.
This kind of toilet works by using a cleaning solution that is swirled around the toilet bowl. Some other kinds of this toilet use a UV light to help break down the dirt. It costs from around €350 to €3.500.
Hands-Free Toilet Flush
This is a good option for individuals who would rather not have to touch the flush handle to flush the toilet after using it. The price range for this is around €300 and €4.500.