How to Install a Toilet

How to Install a Toilet
Your trusty toilet won't last forever. Whether it has developed cracks or unfixable leaks, or it simply uses too much water per flush, it could be time to replace your toilet. You can always rely on a Mr. Rooter® plumber to help you order and replace your old toilet with a brand new one. But, if you like taking on home improvement projects, use these instructions for how to install a toilet yourself.

Gather Tools and Materials

Here's what you need to install a toilet:

  • New toilet
  • DIY flange repair kit (optional)
  • 2 Self-adjusting closet bolts
  • Wax ring
  • Leveler
  • Toilet Shims or Stainless steel washers or pennies (optional)
  • Toilet supply line
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Screwdriver

Assemble the Toilet

  • Attach the tank to the toilet bowl. It is much easier to assemble the toilet before it's bolted to the bathroom floor.
  • Attach the toilet seat as well.
  • Be careful not to over-tighten the nuts, since this could crack the porcelain.

Prepare the Flange

  • Remove the old toilet and scrape away any wax ring residue left behind.
  • Repair the flange if it's damaged with a DIY repair kit.
  • Slip two closet bolts into position on the flange and twist the washers on to hold the bolts snugly in place.
  • Place the wax ring directly on the flange. If the flange sits flush with or slightly below the finished floor, use an extended-height wax ring.

Position and Secure the Toilet

  • Hoist the toilet over the flange and line up the holes with the closet bolts.
  • Once in place, firmly press the toilet against the floor.
  • Place a level on the front, back, left and right of the toilet bowl rim to make sure it's level.
  • If the toilet isn't level or rocks back and forth, shim the toilet with Toilet shims or you can use stainless steel washers or pennies placed underneath the base of the toilet.
  • Place the nylon and regular washers that came with the toilet over the closet bolts and tighten. (Caution overtightening may cause the porcelain to crack) Attach bolt caps to conceal the bolts.

Attach and Test the Water Supply Line

  • Most toilets use a Water supply line with a 3/8" connector. Attach the connector to the bottom of the toilet tank and water supply line with an adjustable wrench.
  • If you choose a toilet supply line with rubber gaskets, you eliminate the need to wrap the threads with Teflon tape.
  • Open the supply valve and allow the tank to fill. Flush the toilet, check for leaks and adjust the fill valve if necessary.

Now you know how to install a toilet!