Question about overtightening bowl bolts

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by jumpyg, Feb 7, 2005.

  1. jumpyg

    jumpyg New Member

    Messages:
    75
    Location:
    Michigan
    Hi, I'm installing my first toilet (Toto Drake), so I'm a little unsure about how tight to tighten the bolts connecting the tank to the bowl. I'm guessing that I can't crack the tank until the tank is pressing up against the bowl, right? Now, there is a little gap all the way around, so the tank jiggles a little too much when I flush it (from the force on the handle). Am I supposed to tighten it until the two pieces are touching?

    I love the toilet so far, but I don't like the fact that there are only two bolts. My old toilets have three bolts, including one in the back, middle portion of the tank. This prevents the tank from leaning forward too much. Other than that, a great toilet!

    Thanks! :)
  2. Clayton

    Clayton Plumber

    Messages:
    124
    Wobble wobble

    A little tank wobble is normal with most two bolt tanks. Some of them will tighten down until the tank and bowls touch but many do not. Do not over tighten or you will crack the tank or bowl even if they are not touching yet. Tighten them until they are good and snug and you can usually see the gaskets on the bolts have compressed some. test it for leaks, if no leaks it is good enough.
    That is one reason I like the mansfiled toilets is because of the 3 bolts and also the flush valve gaskets seem to last forever around here. Although they don't rate so well on the terry's toilet review I haven't had any complaints about them in the last couple years.

    congrats on your new drake install,
  3. jumpyg

    jumpyg New Member

    Messages:
    75
    Location:
    Michigan
    Boy, this sounds awfully subjective! :rolleyes:

    My old toilet was a Mansfield--very stable, but plugged up at least twice a week! I guess they haven't invented the perfect toilet yet. Maybe I'll try the Ultramax (one-piece) next time.
  4. RioHyde

    RioHyde Plumber

    Messages:
    339
    Location:
    Cincinnati, Ohio
    Maybe its just me, but I have only had one Toto that had some tank wobble to it. I had to go back the following day to cut off the toilet bolts because my hacksaw blade had broken, it was already 5:30pm and the wife had "made plans" for me for the night. The next day I gave the tank bolts about another 1/4 to 1/2 turn and voila! no more wobble. As I said, this was the one and only wobbly Toto tank I've had and Toto is all I install. I dont get it...is it just me? :D

    On a side note, I've got 2 Mansfield 3.5 gal flush toilets and a Toto Drake in my house. My kids clog up the Mansfields all the time but have yet to clog the Drake.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2005
  5. jumpyg

    jumpyg New Member

    Messages:
    75
    Location:
    Michigan
    I'm glad to hear you've had such good luck with the Drakes, Rio. I think maybe I'm being too paranoid about cracking the bowl, so I didn't tighten the bolts enough. I just don't want to pay $80 or whatever it costs for a new bowl. I will drain the bowl and give it another shot.
  6. jimbo

    jimbo Plumber

    Messages:
    8,997
    Location:
    San Diego
    I never use a wrench on these bolts. Gently lean down a little on one side of the tank and snug the nut BY HAND. Then lean on the other side a little, and snug by hand. Repeat this procedure until the tank is where it "feels right".
  7. jdkimes

    jdkimes Engineer

    Messages:
    181
    Location:
    Littleton, CO
    One of most asked questions

    This is one of the most asked questions on this site.
    Check out these instructions
    I had the same question.
    My Drake has "gap" and does move if pushed, and plumbers here have noted that the tank on any toilet should NOT be used as a back rest. I've thought about tightening it but ask why risk the cracked tank/bowl. But I did note that at an office last week the toilet was Drake and noted no gap. I wonder if maybe Toto has supplied some gaskets that are a little too thick.
  8. jumpyg

    jumpyg New Member

    Messages:
    75
    Location:
    Michigan
    Okay, I tightened that baby down with no problems! :D

    I had my wife apply some pressure to the top of the bowl to slightly compress the seal between tank and bowl. Then I alternated between tightening the two bolts. I got it tight enough so that the botton front edge of the tank is snug against the bowl. So when I flush the toilet, the tank does not rock forward. Of course, there is still some backward action if you push on the tank, but it's a big improvement over before.

    I'm now completely happy with my new Toto Drake and plan to take it on its "maiden voyage" soon! :D:eek::D

    Thanks for the advice everyone.
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