Creative solutions for our toilet predicament. Banjo top

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by JustineQB, Apr 28, 2014.

  1. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    Hi everyone. I have been reading these forums and, having been convinced that you all are the experts, I now come seeking your help.

    A year ago we hired a contractor to remodel our bathroom. Our home was built in 1959 and the bathrooms are tiny, so we added some space-saving features, one of which was installing a granite banjo countertop for the vanity and drawer, which the toilet fits underneath. (similar to attached pic)

    Rather, the toilet was SUPPOSED to fit underneath. The measurements were done incorrectly, and now we are stuck with the problem of the toilet being set too far back underneath the drawer. The toilet's lid and seat can only be lifted to approximately 85 degrees upright before they knock against the drawer above it, meaning that they definitely do NOT stay up on their own. This is a ridiculous inconvenience that must be remedied, only the contractor said it would cost about $1000 to tear up the floor/ceiling and move the plumbing again, and he was "not interested" in spending that amount. (He did not accept responsibility for his miscalculation, even though the bathroom was completely gutted and every bit of work in there was done by him and his crew from scratch.)

    So, in order to avoid spending another $1000 (with a new contractor) to relocate the toilet, I'm wondering if there are other, simpler, options. We really only need the toilet pulled forward by 1-2 inches, max, to allow the lid to open to a bit past 90 degrees and stay up on its own. I know about the offset flange, but from what I read, this solution is really not ideal (and may still require tearing up the floor and adding cost?).

    1.) If we put a 10" rough-in toilet on a 12" rough-in (which is what we have in the floor currently), does that only increase the gap behind the toilet (not an issue for us, since the toilet is somewhat hidden under the countertop and drawer), or does it also shift the bowl/lid/seat 2 inches forward? (which is what we want!)

    Alternatively...

    2.) Is there a small round toilet that you know of that would clear 29.5 inches height with the toilet seat raised?

    Please help - I appreciate your expertise and time so much!

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  2. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,812
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    quote; If we put a 10" rough-in toilet

    IT depends on the toilet's manufacturer. Some just use a 12" bowl with a "skinny" tank so the seat would be in the same spot. The Kohler Wellworth DOES use a specific 10" bowl (K-4273) and the 12" rough tank, so it would be 2" further forward.
  3. dj2

    dj2 Member

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    425
    Location:
    California
    How about removing the drawer over the tank?
  4. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    Thank you, both, for your replies.

    dj2 - We spent a lot (money, time, effort) on the new cabinetry and really do need the drawer space. But you're right, if worse came to worse we could remove the drawer and do without.

    hj - do you know whether Toto is one of the manufacturers where a 10" rough-in toilet would mean that it moves forward two inches? I guess if I look at the spec sheets and the dimensions of the 10" and 12" toilets are the same, then the 10" rough-in would mean the toilet would project two inches further into the room, correct?
  5. Reach4

    Reach4 Active Member

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    2,385
    Location:
    IL
    American Standard COLONYâ„¢ROUND FRONT 10" ROUGH-IN TOILET would give 11-5/8 inches from the wall to the seat bolts, but their 12 inch rough toilet would give the same. That is one where they use the shallower tank. You did not say how deep the drawer front is from the wall. huge4.png This is not going to help you probably, but I already uploaded the graphic.

    Still, staying under your 29-1/2 number for the tank limits choices.

    A temporary workaround would be to use a commercial split-front toilet seat on your existing toilet. That would be shorter.

    A sculptured front on the drawer might make things work.

    I don't know what your agreement was with your remodeler, but a small claims court filing, or maybe just the warning, would increase his interest.
  6. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    Thank you, Reach4. The drawer is about 13" deep, total. (A so-called 12" drawer, but then the depth of face on the drawer adds more. This was the reason for his miscalculation.)

    We really screwed up by paying him at the end of the project, but - go figure - just before the toilet was installed. They had remodeled 3 bathrooms all at once and we had been living away from home for nearly 3 months, and it seemed like we were done! We made the colossal rookie mistake of paying (when pressured a bit) before the job was 100% complete, because it seemed like "all" he had to do was install the toilet - piece of cake! whoops. Now it's been a year (it took us this long to be able to face dealing with it again, after being so emotionally drained from before), so I don't know what I can do with him anymore. Not sure I want him back in the house anyway.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  7. Reach4

    Reach4 Active Member

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    2,385
    Location:
    IL
    So how close to OK is the drawer? Would 1 inch solve it? Would removing the drawer pull help?

    What determines how far in the drawer goes? The front of the drawer, or the back? huge5.png
    In sketch, red represents backer board added before any carpentry.
    Orange represents front board that was flat board. Remove drawer pull.

    Then with band saw or other cutter (dado?) cut relief for toilet seat. Paint white. Put 2 drawer pulls on drawer front sides.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  8. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

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    Land of Cheese
    Consider a commercial style seat, which does not have a lid.
  9. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    These are very good questions. I think all we need is an inch (either by shortening the drawer or moving the toilet) - an inch and a half to be safer.

    I think the front of the drawer determines how far in it goes. I'd have to look again to be sures
    The other thing is, though, we kept our previous toilet and just had it reinstalled with this remodel (a year ago) and then just recently a part broke and the toilet is not currently functioning. It is an old toilet (maybe 20 years), so we are okay with buying a new one, and we were hoping that by buying the "right" one we might be able to solve the problem with the drawer at the same time, before doing work on the drawer.


    Good idea, it is worth considering as a back-up option. I'd prefer an option to close the lid of the toilet, if possible.
  10. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    So what do you all think about installing a 10" Toto on a 12" rough-in? Will it push the bowl -- especially the seat hinge, is what I'm interested in -- forward two inches?
  11. Reach4

    Reach4 Active Member

    Messages:
    2,385
    Location:
    IL
    It would push the seat forward. However I think you will have a problem getting a 10 inch rough round seat Toto with your max tank height of 29.5 inches -- or can the tank be higher?
  12. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    Yeah, there is a max height of 29.5" available. There do seem to be some low-profile 10" Totos such as: Eco Soiree, Carlyle II, and Carolina II. These have the unifit rough-in, adjusting to 10". Anyone had experience with any of these toilets? Any recommendations for one over the other?

    Reach4, love the sketch of the drawer, great idea. Thanks.
  13. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    1,891
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Those are all stellar toilets. We have a Carlyle II and love it. One consideration is that if there is no room between the top of the tank and the bottom of the shelf, it's going to be challenge just to remove the toilet top, much less to get in there to replace a flapper or a fill valve down the road when the time comes. Although the "lowboy" toilets tend to have not quite as strong a flush, the Toto Carolina II has a lower tank than the Carlyle II and might give you more room under the shelf.

    You can see the dimensions on these by checking the spec sheets at Totousa.com Don't bother trying to click your way to the toilets; their web site isn't well-laid-out. Just do a search in the upper right box on Carlyle II or whatever, and then click on the toilet, and then click on the "downloads and resources" tab on the specific toilet's page to pull up the spec sheet, which will have the dimensions.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  14. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    15,111
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    I don't like anything deeper than 7" above a toilet for just that reason. A toilet has a seat, and it needs to be lifted at times to use it.
    Now one solution, would be to use a seat without lid, and sit down. Really? 13 inches?

    Cacher Chick is thinking the same way I am. Commercial seat. Sounds like a cheap $25 fix.
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2014
  15. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,812
    Location:
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    quote; I guess if I look at the spec sheets and the dimensions of the 10" and 12" toilets are the same, then the 10" rough-in would mean the toilet would project two inches further into the room, correct

    The only sure way to tell is to check the specifications for the toilets. If both use the same bowl number then a 10" would not help you.
  16. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

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    Location:
    Maryland
    I know, we really didn't want the drawer that deep, but we did want A drawer, and this was the only measurement offered by the cabinetry company we went with. Maybe we should have searched elsewhere. We were newbies at the world of remodels, and doing three bathrooms all at the same time was quite the initiation!
  17. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    26,812
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    The countertop probably sticks out further than the drawer or the drawer pull so it would have to be cut back to make any difference.
  18. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

    Messages:
    9
    Location:
    Maryland
    The toilet seat/lid doesn't reach anywhere near as high as the countertop, so that part is okay.
  19. JustineQB

    JustineQB New Member

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    Location:
    Maryland

    Thank you for your advice. I know, the Toto website is awful!! Completely un-user-friendly; very poorly designed for navigation.
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Forum Title Date
Toilet Forum discussions solutions for a very small bathroom Jul 27, 2011

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