Wednesday, March 28, 2012

How To Replace and/or Install A Toilet

Spark's grandpa is having knee replacement surgery and wanted a taller toilet.  They actually had an abnormally short toilet at the place they just bought.  "Curse you tiny toilet!!!"  We volunteered to swap the toilet out for them. 

The important first step not shown here is to turn off the water supply from the wall, otherwise you will be sponging for eternity.

After the water is off, flush the toilet to empty the tank.  The tank still has water in it, so soak it up with a sponge.  This takes a while, but you have to carry the old toilet out through the house so do a good job.

The tank is held onto the toilet with a couple of bolts.  Unscrew the nuts under the tank and lift it off, you can see why it needs to be empty.

The toilet still has some water in it so sponge more out of the hole where the tank was.

There is a bolt on each side of the toilet to fasten it to the floor.  Unscrew these and lift the toilet off.

Under the old toilet there is a yucky wax ring.  You will need to scrape this wax off and use a new wax ring.  It is really sticky, use a putty knife or blade screw driver.  You are doing this over the waste pipe so it may not smell like spring flowers.  It looks gross but so does the new wax ring.

The floor under a toilet is usually pretty dirty from years of condensation in the summer humidity, mop it before you continue.

Here Spark is taking off the water supply from the wall and putting on a news water supply.  The new toilet is taller so the old supply line won't reach.  If it would reach you can skip this step, or you can get a new one anyway.  They only cost a couple dollars and new ones are made with a stainless steel mesh that won't burst.  It is also easier to change now with the toilet out of the way. 

Taking the new toilet out of the box, it's heavy!

Put the new wax ring on the toilet, not on the floor drain.  You can see it looks gross even when new.  You will need to press it firmly onto the toilet, when you flip the toilet over to install it needs to stay in place.   Set the toilet onto the bolts sticking up from the drain.  The plastic flange in the wax ring points downward into the drain pipe.  We used the old bolts, they were in good shape.  The toilet comes with new bolts if you need to swap them.   Push the toilet on straight down, don't rock it back and forth!!   You really, really want it to have a good seal.

Apply new nuts onto the bolts.  New toilets generally come with plastic nuts and steel bolts.  The plastic nuts are nice because it is a pain to try and get corroded rusty pieces apart.  Put the new tank, not shown here, on the toilet, two nuts and bolts hold it on.  There is a rubber gasket that fits between them to prevent leaks.

Hooking up the new water supply to the bottom of the tank.  Make it tight but don't turn it so far that the float valve inside the tank is turned or twisted.

Putting the seat on the toilet. 

Turn on the water supply and watch the tank fill up.

Putting the new cover on the tank, almost done.

Invite Grandma in to check out the new toilet.  Remind her to "enjoy the go".

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