Big toilet levelling problem, help!

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by iman, Mar 12, 2010.

  1. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    Big toilet levelling problem, help!...All Done :)

    First time posting, great forum!
    As you can see my basement floor is sloped towards my floor drain which happens to be in the bathroom very close to my new Toto Drake. This much shimming doesn't seem right. How un-level can the toilet be before performance becomes an issue? The flange is level so one side is slightly below the finished floor and the other side is slightly above the finished floor (1/8th inch or less). Should I use a wax gasket or wax-free? How will the shimming affect the gasket? I noticed that the flange is only glued to the drain pipe, not fastened to the concrete floor below, is this a problem?
    Any help is appreciated!
    Thanks
    Ian

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 26, 2010
  2. jc60618

    jc60618 DIY Junior Member

    Messages:
    88
    Location:
    Chicago
    I have seen toilets that are totally unleved and performed just fine. That is too much shimming, in your case I would shim it just a little and made sure the tank is set level. With the tank level an unleveled bowl wont stand out as much. I always use the #3 wax ring with out the horn which is thicker and makes up for any imperfections. Finally I always secure the flange to the structure. Go out and get yourself some tapcon bit/screws which are made to go into concrete.
  3. Doherty Plumbing

    Doherty Plumbing Journeyman & Gas Fitter

    Messages:
    810
    Location:
    Penticton, BC
    Use wax not foam.

    The flange SHOULD be secured to concrete.

    And how come you're trying to install the toilet with the washer and nut BELOW the toilet? I have never seen an install setup like that... especially considering the nut and washer aren't even brass.

    If the floor is sloped that much you'll have no choice but to shim like mad. However don't forget that the toilet is brittle and you'll want to support the base as strongly as you can where you have it shimmed.

    And I hope you're good at caulking because you're gonna have one helluva gap to seal up and make look good :D
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2010
  4. jc60618

    jc60618 DIY Junior Member

    Messages:
    88
    Location:
    Chicago
    "And how come you're trying to install the toilet with the washer and nut BELOW the toilet? I have never seen an install setup like that... especially considering the nut and washer aren't even brass"

    That is done to secure the bolts to flange. Doing it like that will make installation easier because you wont have the bolts moving around when setting the bowl.
  5. Doherty Plumbing

    Doherty Plumbing Journeyman & Gas Fitter

    Messages:
    810
    Location:
    Penticton, BC
    I gathered that but I have just never seen that before. The T bolts I buy around here come with little plastic rings that do the same thing. Regardless the nut and washer should be brass.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2010
  6. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    Thanks for the replies.
    My plumber added the extra washer and nut, I thought it was a little unusual.
    I've remember using those little plastic rings to hold the T bolts last time I replaced a wax gasket.
    My plumber also wants to use a rubber gasket, from what I've read wax is the way to go.

    Is it OK to seal the holes in the flange and the gap around the flange where it meets the floor to prevent any water (if there ever is a gasket leak) from getting under my sub-floor, I'd rather see the water leak out from under the bowl on top of the floor.
  7. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,124
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Since the floor is leaning, and you will be shimming the bowl to level, the rubber sounds like a good way to go.
    I've had good success with the Fluidmaster Waxless.

    Last edited: Apr 26, 2010
  8. johnfrwhipple

    johnfrwhipple Bathroom Design & Build - North Vancouver, B.C.

    Messages:
    4,412
    Location:
    North Vancouver, BC
    From the photo it appears there is a lot of voids under your WC flange. Is this being filled? I would want to see this area filled so a potential leak does not go unnoticed for years and years.

    How is the WC flanged attached to the floor? It doesn't appear to me anchored in anyway.

    This set up looks like a recipe for disaster from my chair. I think this area should be redone as the WC flange should be secured to the 3/4" plywood I see in your picture.

    If this is not an option and your moving in the direction of a less than standard install consider other means of securing the WC flange to the sub floor like - Premium Construction Adhesive or some custom metal tabs that can be secured to the flange and tucked under the ply maybe an inch or so. If you glue this set up leave it for at least 2-4 days so the glue can set up and siliconing the front and sides of the toilet to the floor can only help stiffen things up.

    Good Luck.
  9. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    Thanks again everyone.
    I think my contractor & plumber decided to attach the flange this way because it's a floating floor.
    DRIcore over concrete all sloped towards the floor drain. The flange is only glued to the drain pipe.
    I was going to fill all the voids under the flange with something, not sure what, I might be able to
    get some cement under there, possibly caulking? Now I'm worried.

    Attached Files:

  10. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,124
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    The red circle areas are not a problem.

    The flange does need to be secure to something though,
    or the bowl will be move.
  11. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    Got it fastened to the concrete with some Tapcon anchors.
    I'll let you know how the shimming goes.
    Thanks!!!
  12. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,831
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Toilets are NOT affected by how level they are. The limit to how unlevel they can be is when you have to use a seat belt to keep from sliding off it.
  13. PJM

    PJM New Member

    Messages:
    4
    Location:
    NY
    I found these shims made especially for toilets but, can't find a place that sells them not even online. Does any one know where to get them? And luckily my toilet isn't anywhere near as out of level as Ian's.
    http://www.ezshim.com/products/johnnyshim/index.html
  14. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,831
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    Hardware stores should have them. But anything that fits the opening and levels the toilet will work just as well. Some plumbers use lead because it can be hammered to the right thickness.
  15. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    After a closer look at my toilet bowl, I noticed that it's lopsided.
    One side of the bowl is 1/4 inch lower than the other, unfortunately the lower side
    is leaning the same way that the floor is so it makes it look even more un-level.
    I called the place where I bought it and they're getting me a new bowl.

    I was looking at the Fluidmaster Wax-free and Fernco Wax-free gaskets today,
    I like the idea of the flexible adhesive on the Frenco.
    Does anyone have any experience with these gaskets?
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2010
  16. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,139
    Location:
    New England
    I've used the Fluidmaster. Their installation instructions are a little hokey. Terry puts it on the horn of the toilet first, then sets the toilet. That would probably be the easiest (if you can lift the toilet!).

    [​IMG]
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2010
  17. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    Just got my replacement bowl, BIG difference!
    My first bowl was really lopsided. Is this a common problem?
    I thought that when buying a TOTO I wouldn't have to deal with this kind of thing.
  18. iman

    iman New Member

    Messages:
    8
    Location:
    Canada
    Toilet installation went smoothly. I used the Fluidmaster Wax-free gasket.
    I also tried one of the FloodSafe Connectors but it shut off on the first tank fill,
    I reset it and it shut off again on the second fill... it's going back to Home Depot.

    I have to push on the trip lever fairly hard to flush, is this normal? (Toto Drake)
    My old American Standard upstairs is very easy to flush.
    Thanks!
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 26, 2010
  19. nukeman

    nukeman Nuclear Engineer

    Messages:
    711
    Location:
    VA
  20. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,124
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    If you had read previous posts in this forum, you would know that you can't use the Watts Floodsafe connectors.
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