A wobbly, leaky, or smelly toilet typically signals you have a damaged flange that needs to be replaced. This plumbing component secures the toilet to the floor and connects it to the waste pipe, preventing water and sewer gasses from seeping out.

Toilet flange replacement can be a challenging task. And a common question among homeowners is if you can put the new flange over the old one. While doing so is technically possible, it’s not recommended. It can only lead to significant problems down the line. Here are the reasons why:

  1. Improper Seal. Placing a new flange over an old one can result in an improper seal between the toilet and the waste pipe. This problem can lead to leaks, water damage, and unpleasant odors.
  2. Height Issues. Installing a new flange on top of the old one can raise the height of the flange. A higher flange can result in an uneven toilet, which can cause rocking or instability.
  3. Structural Problems. Layering flanges can weaken the connection between the toilet and the floor. As a result, you may experience a wobbly toilet.

Removing the old flange before placing the new one will ensure a stable, level, and secure toilet installation. Here’s a guide on proper toilet flange replacement.

How To Replace a Toilet Flange

Replacing a toilet flange takes around three hours, and you’ll need basic plumbing skills for this task. Here’s a step-by-step guide:

  1. Turn off the water supply.
  2. Empty the toilet tank through continuous flushing.
  3. Detach the toilet tank. Loosen the bolts connecting it to the bowl and take it off.
  4. Remove the toilet bowl. Take out the nuts that secure it from the floor and lift it off. You may need another person to help you with this task.
  5. Inspect the flange and remove remaining wax and screws.
  6. Take out the old flange. If you find a metal flange attached with a deep-seal fitting, stop and hire a plumber to avoid damaging the drainpipe.
  7. Buy a new flange that matches the old one’s size, shape, and material. Ensure you get a wax ring if the new set you bought didn’t have one.
  8. Insert the new flange into the outflow pipe. Secure it to the subfloor with included hardware and flange bolts, ensuring it is level and properly seated.
  9. Secure the new wax ring to the flange.
  10. Reinstall the toilet. Carefully lower it onto the flange, aligning the mounting holes with the bolts.
  11. Reconnect the water supply, and test for leaks.

Hire a Professional Plumber

Replacing a toilet flange can be laborious and dangerous. If you’re unsure what to do, hiring a professional is the best action.

Contact us at Severson Plumbing if you need help with toilet flange replacement in Bend, Oregon. We’ll ensure your new flange is installed properly.