Good morning loyal readers, today I’d like to talk a bit about a staple job for any plumber: toilet installation. As with most potential plumbing problems, the majority of toilet problems have their roots in the actual installation process. A properly hooked-up and maintained toilet should never leak or run. When I hear a client complain about their toilet leaking, I immediately ask them: did you hire a real plumber to put it in, or was it a do-it-yourself job?
About 90% of the time, a customer will meekly reply that their handy-man nephew or some other friend performed the toilet installation for them. Here’s a tip: if you don’t know how to install a toilet flange, you should probably consult a professional before trying to hook-up that brand new sparkly dual flush toilet you just bought. Installing a toilet flange is the first step of hooking up any toilet, and is where 99% of all leaky toilet problems start out.
What is a Toilet Flange?
This piece is also known as a “closet flange”, owing its name to the traditional term for a toilet: “water closet”. It is a pipe fitting that is equipped with a metal mounting flange. The bottom half of the toilet (the toilet bowl) will eventually be bolted onto this piece. Once the flange is properly fitted to the pipe below, a wax ring is placed on top, to seal the connection between the toilet and pipe. Once everything is fitted and the wax ring is in place, the toilet bowl can be bolted down, and the tank can be placed and fitted.
If your toilet is leaking, it probably has to do with the wax ring. Either it wasn’t properly installed, it’s defective, or it isn’t providing a proper seal for some other reason. At this point, the entire process has to be reversed and every piece needs to be inspected for reliance.
To Prevent a Leaky Toilet, Hire an Expert
I know we’ve said it before. We’ll say it again. Hiring an expert to handle any new plumbing work in your home or business WILL save you money down the road. In this economy, it’s sure tempting to call up Uncle Bob-who’s-handy-with-tools to install that shiny new appliance, but you have to ask yourself: is Uncle Bob going to pay the bill when my toilet breaks and floods the house? Not likely.
Trust your Toronto toilet installation to a competent, licensed plumber. Make the smart call instead, and sleep well at night knowing a competent professional has overseen the job and taken steps to protect you and your building.