Originally Posted by Redwood
Real plumbers take the toilet off and put it back on with the tank attached to the bowl...
OK, I don't want to make a major issue out of this, but...
I talked to a plumber who I've known for years, and he says you're right that plumbers always used to remove the tank and bowl together, but the reason is because of a difference in the tank-to-bowl hardware that was commonly used years ago.
And, I'm convinced he's right.
What he's telling me is that until about 20 years ago, the tank-to-bowl hardware that was provided with Crane and American Standard toilets didn't allow you to take the tank off the bowl without removing all the water from the tank first. Otherwise, whatever water was still in the tank would come spilling out the bolt holes.
Those old tank-to-bowl kits looked like this:
or this for some toilets:
and were meant to be used like this:
With those old tank-to-bowl kits, it was the tightening of the nut under the top of the toilet bowl that compressed the rubber washer inside the tank.
So, if you loosened the nuts under the top of the toilet bowl to remove the tank, the water tight seal around the rubber washers would be lost and any water still in the tank would come spilling out the bolt holes. So, plumbers would shut off the water to the toilet, flush it and then remove the tank and the bowl together to avoid having to take the time to get all of the water out of the tank. With the water shut off, there would only be a little water left in both the tank and the bowl after the flush anyhow.
Nowadays, most tank-to-bowl kits come with an extra washer and "jam nut" (which is a nut that's half the thickness of a normal hex nut) to be installed between the tank and the bowl like this:
...so that the tank can be removed even if there's still some water in it, and the rubber washers remain compressed so there's no concern they'll leak when the tank is put back on the bowl.
I'll leave it up to the people in here to decide for themselves how to take their toilets off and put them back on. I guess there's no right or wrong way to do that, but if the above explanation is correct, then there's no reason any more to do it the harder way.