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Trading Toilets


There are times when even functioning toilets need to be replaced. Maybe you’re renovating or redecorating your bathroom and your old toilet just doesn’t fit in anymore. Or maybe you want to save on your water bill with a more efficient model. Did you know high-efficiency toilets could save up to $90 per year and $2,000 over the lifetime of the toilet*?

Let’s get started!

fixing a toilet

Let’s get started!

Whatever the reason, you don’t need plumbing experience to change a toilet. You just need a pair of gloves, a sponge, a rag, a putty knife and a wrench. So let’s get started!

First, make sure you have all the necessary parts for your new toilet. Read the box of the new on to see what is included and what you may need to purchase separately. Here is a list of commonly used items for a toilet that may or may not be included with your purchase:

  • Supply line
  • Wax ring
  • Floor hardware
  • Toilet seat
  • Caulk

Removing the old one is pretty easy

Turn off the water supply and flush the toilet to empty the tank. Put on rubber gloves and sponge out the remaining water from the tank and bowl into the sink or a bucket. Then, use an adjustable wrench to remove the two tank bolts. Disconnect the supply hose from the tank, straddle the bowl and lift with your legs to remove the tank.

Next, pop off the decorative caps from the floor bolts on either side of the bowl and remove the nuts. Gently rock the bowl back and forth to break the wax seal, then lift the bowl from the floor and remove it. Stuff an old rag into the floor drain to keep sewer gas from smelling things up. Use a putty knife to scrape away the residual wax from the floor flange.

Removing the old one is pretty easy

And installing the new one is even easier

And installing the new one is even easier

Replace the old flange mounting bolts with the new ones supplied. Fit a new wax seal around the hole on the bottom of the bowl. Remove the rag from the drain, and then lower the bowl to the floor, making sure to line up the mounting bolts with the bowl base holes. Rock the bowl back and forth to seat the wax ring. Install and tighten the nuts with care—don’t over-tighten and break the bowl. Then install the supplied bolt caps.

Now place the tank on the bowl, guiding its bolts into the corresponding holes. Tighten the nuts firmly, install the tank valve assembly and reconnect the water supply. Apply a thin line of caulk around the entire base of the toilet to help seal it to the bathroom floor.

That’s it. Now give it a flush and admire your work.

*Data courtesy of WaterSense, a program sponsored by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

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