Questions about re-installing a toilet after reflooring

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by bigbird, Apr 2, 2008.

  1. bigbird

    bigbird New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Canada
    I will be lifting my American Standard Cadet 3 to put new linoleum in the bathroom. The new linoleum will be laid over the old.
    Questions:
    1) Do I need to separate the tank and bowl before lifting the toilet, or can I remove it and reinstall it as 1 piece?
    2) What's better, a double wax ring or a flange spacer and regular ring for the new toilet height?
    3)Should the wax ring be applied to the flange or should it go onto the toilet horn?

    That's it for now. Thanks for the help!
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

    Messages:
    22,270
    Location:
    New England
    It somewhat depends on where the flange is now. Ideally, the flange is installed on top of the finished floor. A layer of vinal isn't very much. A normal wax ring is probably enough if the flange is still sitting above the finished surface. If it obviously squishes when you push it down on the flange, it should be fine.

    You can lift the whole toilet without taking it apart.

    If you make sure you have the wax sticking to the horn, you can put it there. If it falls or dislodges, you might need a new one. If you put it on the flange, and don't get the toilet lined up well, you can mess it up as well. So, it's sort of a tossup.
  3. DallasDIY

    DallasDIY New Member

    Messages:
    20
    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    This is just a personal preference issue but, when I've pulled and reset any of my toilets, I've always separated the bowl and the tank. Having less weight on the back to wrestle with has made it easier for me to assure I get the bowl square on the flange when I set it down. For the he-men who do this for a living, I expect it's no big deal. ;)

    I've also always stuck the wax ring on the horn. I think that's because of the relationship between toilets and my aim from a very early age.
  4. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,303
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Plumbers always put the wax on the floor flange, and then drop the bowl down onto the wax.

    When you reinstall a toilet, make sure the connection between the tank and bowl is not leaking.
  5. seabee63

    seabee63 New Member

    Messages:
    1
    Sorry to piggy-back on this topic, but I'm in a similar situation right now and my situation may apply...

    I'm redoing the bathroom at our cottage and considering laminate flooring to keep the warm rustic feel to it. The bathroom currently has 25 year old vinyl flooring that I've tried to take up with no luck. So I figured I'd lay down 1/8" sub-floor and lay the laminate on top of this. This will add probably 3/8" to the height of the floor that will not be able to be compensated for with a new wax ring, so what are my options?

    Are there adapters that can be purchased to add height to the flange?
  6. bigbird

    bigbird New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Canada
    Yes, I just bought an adapter in case the new flooring is higher than the existing flange. It's called an adjustable closet flange and it's 3/8" thick. You could always buy two and piggyback them for extra thickness.
  7. Redwood

    Redwood Master Plumber

    Messages:
    7,450
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I would use a closet flange extension ring. The top of the ring should end up being about 1/4" above the finished floor.
  8. hj

    hj Moderator & Master Plumber Staff Member

    Messages:
    27,056
    Location:
    Cave Creek, Arizona
    floor

    An additional layer of lineoleum will have no effect on the viability of a wax ring, as long as it is applied directly to the old layer. For other types of flooring the thickness becomes a factor. Often a #10 extra thick ring is all that is necessary.
  9. bigbird

    bigbird New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Canada
    I pulled the toilet this morning, didn't separate the tank and bowl. It wasn't that heavy. I did take off the tank cover but left the seat bolted on. The wax ring stayed with the floor flange and there was a bit of wax on the horn that I had my wife scrape off as I held the toilet tilted. New linoleum tomorrow after work and then re-seat the toilet. I will need a thicker flange. Hopefully the toilet will re-install as easily as it came off.
  10. bigbird

    bigbird New Member

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Canada
    Following the posted advice, I used a 3/8" flange spacer to bring the flange above the new floor level, installed a new wax ring onto the flange, lowered the toilet straight down onto the closet bolts, pushed gently straight down with no rocking, evenly tightened the closet nuts slowly and alternately, and everything went smoothly and quickly. Thanks again for the expert advice.
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