4 Steps to Replacing an Old or Leaking Toilet

Any homeowner will at some point have to replace their toilet. Your toilet could be getting old or leaking. Below are steps to take to repair a leaking or old toilet like a professional plumber.

1. Disconnect the Supply Line

After turning off the main water supply, flush the bathroom to get rid of any water in the tank or bowl. However, a little water will be left in the bowl, and that’s when you will need to use a plunger to force the water into the drain line. You can then use a sponge or bucket to remove the water left in the tank.

2. Install a Wax Seal

Homeowners can use their knife to pry up and get rid of any existing wax seal. However, inspect the underneath flange first to check whether it has any crack or not and then proceed to remove the towel or clothing from the hole. Call your professional local plumbers if your flange has cracks. However, if the flange seems okay, pull the rag off the hole and remove closet bolts. After that, install a new seal and hook closet bolts in the flange slots. Caution, never install the new seal before removing the clothing or towel from the hole. Leaving the cloth in will not only complicate the process but cost you a lot of money.

3. Remove the Old Toilet

Homeowners will have to fix the trim caps that are often installed at the base of the toilet before removing the old toilet. You want to remove and loosen up the washers and nuts securing the toilet’s closet bolts to the floor. You might need to use a hacksaw for removing rusty bolts as some may not loosen up with a spanner. Homeowners working alone should first disconnect the bowl and the tank and then remove the bowl later. Lifting the bowl and the tank separately will be a lot easier than lifting them together. After removing the nuts and washers on either side of the bowl, lift it gently to avoid breakages. An open line will be left on the sewer system once the homeowner removes the toilet. One way to prevent sewer gases from sneaking into the house and ensuring tools don’t get into the hole is to stuff a rag down into the hole.

4. Secure the Toilet

After placing the assembled toilet on the flange, line up the bolts and nuts with the holes in the base of the flange. Press the bowl a bit so that the wax ring forms a seal. Then put a few washers and nuts on each bolt and tighten them using a small wrench. However, don’t over-tighten them as this can damage the bowl. You can use a hacksaw cut any piece of a bolt that extends far over the washers and nuts.

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