Toto Promenade rocks on above-tile closet flange

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by Anthony Curtas, Nov 28, 2011.

  1. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    Just got my Toto Promenade installed and it has one tiny issue:
    The closet flange is on top of the tile (flush, not warped or spaced) and is pretty wide as closet flanges go. It sticks out a good 1/2" or more outside of the closet bolts. It is probably original to the house, 1978 or so.

    I got it shimmed level, but basically the lip of the base is sitting on shims all the way around. that seems like a good recipe for cracking a toilet over time. Gaps range from around 1/8" to 1/4".

    So now I'm considering all options:

    1) Replace. I can relocate this toilet to the upstairs bath -- I know that flanges is flush with the tile because I tiled that one myself about a year ago. Is there a better choice that will fit around a surface mount closet flange?

    2) Rubber gaske. I could try this product for around $30: http://www.blackswanmfg.com/BIGFOOTII.htm Does this work well in these situations?

    3) Just use my shims and caulk them into place

    4) Rework. Redoing the closet flange and tile would be a last resort. We have a major kitchen remodel on and I just don't have the time.

    Any advice on this? Thanks.
    Anthony
  2. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,289
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Does the bowl sit down of the floor if no wax is used?
  3. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    I will have to check. I made the rookie mistake of installing it without a dry fit. I was over excited to get it delivered and the old toilet fit just fine with one or two shims for leveling. It did not even dawn on me that I could have a problem.

    The thing rocked quite a bit before I realized I needed shims, so I am going to have to pull it to put on a new wax ring. When I do that, I'll scrape off the old wax and do a dry fit this time to confirm. Hopefully I can get to that tonight.

    Thanks.
  4. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    Hi Terry,
    I meant to get on this, but we decided to finish the kitchen before worrying about the rocking toilet. The shims are keeping it pretty sturdy for now and that's the least used bath in the house (especially with the kitchen apart).

    It's a really nice toilet, though. The fact it only fills for about three seconds let's me hear how much money I'm saving :) (it replaced a 3gpf monster)
  5. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,384
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    Unless your floor is not level, shims should not be needed. That's why you fit it over the flange without wax. I suspect you did not compress the toilet onto the wax when you set it. The wax should be a room temperature before installing, and you should use you body weight to compress the toilet. Do not rely on the flange bolts to pull the toilet horn into the wax. I would also suggest you use a standard size plain wax ring not one with a plastic funnel.
  6. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    Floor is pretty level. The whole thing sits pretty even off the floor. The shims are to prevent rocking (for now anyways). I used the smallest wax ring I could find with no insert. I'll get some pics and pull the whole thing here once I get my disaster of a kitchen remodel done.
  7. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,384
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    Dry fit it. If the floor is flat and level the toilet skirt will rest on the floor all the way around. It will not rock. This will confirm my suspicion that the wax ring was not compressed. Your body weight should be used to compress the wax until the toilet skirt rests on the floor.
  8. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    That's the plan. I just need to make some time to drain and pull the toilet, clean it up, and do the dry fit proper. In retrospect (and always in the future), I will dry fit before install. The old toilet was on there fine and sitting on the floor, so it never occurred to me that this flange would have a problem.

    I put my full body weight on it before tightening or shimming, so I'm pretty sure the wax is compressed all the way, but I guess I'll find out soon enough. Right now, though, my kitchen plumbing and cabinet install is taking all my free time.

    Thanks.
  9. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,384
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    Toilets are designed for a flange to set on top of the finished floor and still leave plenty of space for the wax ring. There is also plenty of room between the rim of the flange and the toilet skirt. If indeed the flange is set on top of the floor, that isn't your problem. I'm still betting on the wax not being compressed. Are you sure you didn't use an extra thick ring? All you need is the standard thickness. Make sure your new ring is the right one.
  10. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    Thanks Gary.

    I used an Oatey "standard", whatever that is. Not reinforced, not with the plastic, and definitely not "jumbo". Do they make an intentionally undersized ring for tight fits?
  11. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,384
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    As far as I know, there is no undersized wax ring. It would never be needed. Again, if you flange is set on top of the finished floor, a regular wax ring is all that is needed. All brands of toilets are designed with a horn that fits into the ring and compresses the wax. No one makes a toilet with the horn so long that it will require a smaller ring. Larger ones are sometimes used when the flange is recess into the floor, usually after a new floor has been laid on top of the original which leave the original flange below the level of the new floor.
  12. cacher_chick

    cacher_chick Test, Don't Guess!

    Messages:
    3,259
    Location:
    Land of Cheese
    Some plastic flanges are quite thick and could cause a problem if the horn in the toilet is low.
  13. Gary Swart

    Gary Swart In the Trades

    Messages:
    7,384
    Location:
    Yakima WA
    He claims he used a plain wax ring with no plastic funnel, and that the flange is on the floor. I see only two possibilities. (1) Jumbo wax ring, (2) ring not compressed fully.
  14. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    Hi all,
    Just got around to fixing this.

    To answer some above questions:
    1) the toilet with no wax ring sits on the floor fine
    2) the closet flange is above the tile and is thicker than normal (i.e. a new one like I just installed). Because of this, there was only about a 1/8" strip of wax on top of the flange and the toilet was still sitting up. It almost looks like I could use a rubber washer instead.

    I have one regular (No. 1) wax ring, no funnel and will try to do a full compression. Last time the wax went everywhere, through the bolt holes into the drain and to the side of the flange.

    I really wish they made an undersized flange, but I'll see what I can do with this.

    Thanks for all the help. Will post back when it's done.
  15. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    15,289
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    A good place to use a regular wax without the horn.
  16. Anthony Curtas

    Anthony Curtas New Member

    Messages:
    45
    Location:
    Virginia
    After a thorough inspection, the toilet rocked just a small bit (it's a slate tile floor, so it's not ruler flat). I picked up a Bigfoot II a while back (silicone floor gasket), so we installed that. No problems with the wax ring now, it seated fine, the toilet doesn't rock and very little squeezed through the bolt holes. Trimmed the gasket and it looks like another detail of the toilet (disappears).

    The only thing I don't like is that the gasket completely seals the toilet to the floor. I usually don't caulk if the floor seam looks good and if I do caulk I leave the back open so any leaks are visible and don't just sit there and rot the floor.

    So that's two of three toilets converted to Toto. Couldn't be happier with them.

    Thanks again for all the help.

    Anthony
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