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Details
Do it yourself

Install or replace a toilet

Installing a new toilet is an easy project that can give a whole new look to your bathroom.

Before you start

Before buying a new toilet, measure the distance from the wall, without the baseboard, to the bolts holding the bowl to the floor, referred to as the "footprint". The standard footprint is 12 in. Make sure your new toilet will fit.
1

Turn off the water supply

  • 1.1 - Turn off the water supply using the shut-off valve behind the toilet.
  • 1.2 - Take out the tank lid.
  • 1.3 - Flush the toilet to let the water drain completely.
  • 1.4 - Unscrew the handle from the shut-off valve and, with a pair of adjustable wrenches, disconnect the water supply line from the valve and from the toilet tank. Let the water drip into a bucket.

Pro tip

If there's no shut-off valve below the toilet, it's recommended to install one so you can easily shut off the water.
2

Remove the tank

  • 2.1 - Unscrew the nuts on the bolts holding the tank to the toilet. Hold the tank bolts inside the tank with a screwdriver while you unscrew the nuts.
  • 2.2 - Remove the tank.
3

Remove the bowl

  • 3.1 - Pry off the caps from the bolts on either side of the toilet base and the nuts on the floor bolts.
  • 3.2 - Rock the bowl back and forth to break the seal between the toilet and the flange.
  • 3.3 - With help from another person, lift the bowl straight up off the bolts and remove it from the work area. Since wax will remain on the bottom of the toilet, set it down on cardboard, newspaper or a blanket.
4

Prepare the surface for the new toilet

  • 4.1 - Plug the drain hole with a rag.
  • 4.2 - Remove the flange bolts and scrape the remaining wax with a putty knife.
  • 4.3 - Wipe the flange clean and make sure it's not damaged. If it's the case, call a plumber to replace it.
  • 4.4 - Screw new bolts on the flange.

Pro tip

If you're not installing the new toilet right away, cover the drain with cardboard and place a concrete block over the drain to block odours.
5

Prepare the new toilet for installation

  • 5.1 - Lay the toilet bowl upside down on a blanket to avoid scratching it.
  • 5.2 - Place the wax seal around the drain hole.
  • 5.3 - Apply plumbers putty around the perimeter of the bowl.
6

Install the new bowl

  • 6.1 - Take the rag out of the drain.
  • 6.2 - Install the new bowl, making sure the holes at the base of the bowl are lined up with the bolts on the flange. Apply pressure on the bowl to ensure a good adherence of the wax seal and plumbing sealant. Check that the bowl is level and parallel to the wall.
  • 6.3 - Attach the bowl to the floor using new bolts, and cut the excess before putting the caps back on. Do not overtighten as porcelain cracks easily.

Pro tip

If the toilet is not level, use plastic shims.
7

Install the tank

  • 7.1 - Place the connection ring on the water outlet under the tank.
  • 7.2 - Fix the rubber washers over the protruding ends of the bolts and slide them through the tank holes.
  • 7.3 - Fix rubber washers and nuts on the other ends of the bolts and tighten with a ratchet wrench. Do not over tighten as porcelain is brittle and cracks easily.
8

Install the flush handle and the tank ball

  • 8.1 - Install the flush handle, the float ball and the tank ball inside the tank.
9

Connect the water supply

  • 9.1 - Finally, attach the water supply line to the shut-off valve.
  • 9.2 - Connect the other end to the tank and tighten the connecting nuts.
  • 9.3 - Seal the base of the bowl with sealant and remove any excess.
10

Finalize the installation and test

  • 10.1 - Open the shut-off valve.
  • 10.2 - Flush and check water tightness of connections.

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