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Toilet Installation: Seven Simple Steps for the DIYer

The toilet may seem like a complicated device, but actually it's fairly simple to remove and install. In most cases, problems with your toilet can be corrected by simply adjusting or replacing the components in the tank. However, if you have a cracked bowl, are installing new flooring, or just want a new style, removal and toilet installation are about a one-hour project.

Seven Steps for Easy Toilet Installation:

You don't need many tools for toilet removal and installation, but you should have a screwdriver, adjustable wrench, and pliers on hand. A wet-vac can be a big help, too.

  1. Turn off the water supply at the valve behind the toilet.
  2. Flush the toilet to get as much water out of the tank and bowl as possible. Use the wet-vac or a small cup to remove the remaining water from the tank and bowl.
  3. Un-screw the water supply line from the bottom of the tank.
  4. Remove the two bolts that hold the tank to the bowl. You may need to use pliers or a wrench to hold the nuts in place while un-screwing the bolts.
  5. Lift the tank off and sit it aside. If you are putting the same toilet back in place, leave the components inside the tank. However if you're doing a new toilet installation, you'll need to transfer those components to the new toilet.
  6. Remove the caps and nuts holding the bowl to the drain flange and lift the bowl up off the flange and bolts.
  7. Remove and dispose of the wax ring on the drain flange.

Toilet installation involves doing all of the steps in reverse. Always install a new wax ring even if using the same toilet and make sure the bowl is seated in the ring when sitting it in place. When the toilet has been re-assembled, flush it several times to check for leaks and proper operation.