toilet flange

Discussion in 'Plumbing Forum' started by o2284200, May 11, 2013.

  1. May 11, 2013 #1

    o2284200

    o2284200

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    This is a first bathroom on a concrete slab to which I narrowed down a toilet leak from under the toilet onto the floor; most likely coming from wax seal or flange so I bought a new wax and removed the toilet.

    To remove the toilet, I had to cut the bolts with a hacksaw, after which, the old wax ring was mostly still attached to the bottom of the toilet and a small bit of wax remained on the pvc flange.

    The pvc flange was basically flush with the flooring but just a bit crooked...a little lower in the back & higher in the front and sitting in a large bed of caulk on top of the original cast iron flange, which the bolts were attached to and I stuck a little good ole' TP down in the piping.

    How does this cast iron flange & piping look & what's the best way to approach this repair moving forward?

    FWIW, the laminate flooring in this room will be replaced with tile sooner rather than later.

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    Last edited: May 11, 2013
  2. May 11, 2013 #2

    kok328

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    Looks like the flange has a crack where it meets the pipe. However, this isn't as big a problem as it seems as the was ring will cover the crack. It's the bolt holes that are the important part and they still look good. If it were me, I'd install a new wax ring, bolt kit and see what happens. No need to make the job bigger than it has to be at this point.
     
  3. May 11, 2013 #3

    o2284200

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    Thanks, I think the crack you speaking of is actually a shadow in front.

    The part I called the pvc flange appears to be more of a spacer ring to allow for adjustments in floor heights. That said, would you put all that caulk & the spacer ring back 1st?

    My other concern is...Thinking ahead; I'm planning on replacing the floor with tile sooner rather than later and I want to keep that in mind so I don't make more work for myself at that point.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2013
  4. May 12, 2013 #4

    CallMeVilla

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    You can use an extended wax ring that will allow the water to bypass the flange just enough. I typically use them as insurance against future leaks.

    Some plumber will double stack their wax rings when tile is used to get the necessary clearance for the flush ... I have never done it but guys have suggested it to me too.

    :D
     
  5. May 12, 2013 #5

    o2284200

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    I took a wire brush to the flange especially around the slots and it all seems pretty solid. I used one of these on top of the spacer, which again became flush with the floor but I did not put any caulk like it had before. Unfortunately, the bolts are too short and I cannot thread the nut to them. Any suggestions?

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    Last edited: May 13, 2013
  6. May 13, 2013 #6

    CallMeVilla

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  7. May 14, 2013 #7

    o2284200

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    Great, thanks!
    Got some at local HD for about $4; I'll start over and give it a shot with these & a new wax ring.

    FWIW:
    After further review, (I'm not sure if this is an issue or not so forgive me, if it's not BUT...) with the standard length bolts still installed, the right side bolt is a little higher than the left. I tried to place even weight from side to side and I can actually get the nut to start threading on the right side but once I put the washer on the left side, I can't get to the bolt to thread it.
     
  8. May 14, 2013 #8

    nealtw

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    Often the bolts are siting on the floor until you tighten them up, some times you can get a little help by putting something under the bolt and holding them up to the bottom of the flange.
     
  9. May 28, 2013 #9

    o2284200

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    Thought I was in the clear... Got the longer bolts and everything was working for the past couples of weeks until toilet appeared to get backed up and not flush all the way...Water came out from under the it.

    Then while using the utility sink in the attached laundry room, water began pouring out from under the toilet.

    FWIW, There's a clean out just to the right of the utility sink and this all on a first floor concrete slab with no basement access.

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    Last edited: May 28, 2013
  10. May 28, 2013 #10

    CallMeVilla

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    I would suspect a blockage downstream from the toilet which is causing the backflow. Snake the drain until the water runs smoothly through the wash tub.

    You are "almost" done! :D
     
  11. May 28, 2013 #11

    nealtw

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    Sorry I missunderstud the bolt question, I agree with Villa, you have a blockage, but you also have a problem with the wax ring. It should not have leaked there evan with a back up. It's not enough just to get the water to stay in the pipe, it also needs to stop gasses from coming up. Use a regular wax ring under the one with the flange, a new set of long bolts.
     
  12. May 29, 2013 #12

    o2284200

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    No problem...Thanks! So, I still have the same problem with the wax ring :( and you're saying to start over with another new wax ring with flange but add an additional wax ring? The longer bolts I have on now should be able to be re-used here. What about those Extra Thick & REINFORCED wax rings?

    UPDATES: Ok I'm not sure how important this is but I never did put any sealant around the outside of the bottom of the toilet after replacing the wax ring. Also, It's been brought to my attention that either a small hand towel/washcloth went down the toilet recently...So, I think we have our blockage.

    I was researching online and ended up finding General Pipe Cleaners Closet Augers, which apparently come in 3' & 6' with Regular Head or optional Drop Head. http://www.drainbrain.com/pro/closetaugers.html Looks like a great piece to have on hand but my concern here is even the 6' will not reach the blockage because it's most likely down the inside the pipe. I had the toilet off already and no sign of the washcloth ALSO we've been using the toilet for almost 2 weeks. I actually called General and they recommend I rent a Mini Rooter XP with 50 feet of half (whatever that is) & retrieving tool. Your thoughts?
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2013
  13. May 29, 2013 #13

    nealtw

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    Extra thick may work, your call! You never seal around the toilet to the floor, if there is a leak in the wax seal you want to know it, water can still soak the paper backing of lino or work it's way under tile, or if you were on a wood floor, you want to catch it before it leaks down stairs.
    You blockage may have moved along and the pipe should be cleaned to make sure it is clear. Cast iron pipe can have scale and other stuff to catch a solid and may be it should be scoped an maybe more cleaning will be required. [ame]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e-VzpLO4Qn4[/ame]
     
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  14. May 29, 2013 #14

    CallMeVilla

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    Mysterious problems you have .... The new wax ring should have prevented the water from the blockage from leaking back onto the floor (it should have shown up in your wash sink). Typically, you use a plain wax ring if the closet flange is slightly above the finished floor. In your case, the closet flange is flush with the floor or slightly below, so you used the wax ring with the plastic bell or funnel. You did the right thing.

    If a cotton towel is down your drain, it MUST be removed or pushed into the larger main pipe. I would operate the auger through the cleanout until you hit resistance. Pull it out in hopes of snagging the towell. If that fails, just keep pushing into the towel until the tip hooks it. If that fails, you MUST run the auger to the main line and possibly the street.

    To ensure complete clearance, you could rent a video scope. They are easy to operate and give you a clear picture of the interior of your pipes. Usually, you get 75' of cable, which is typically enough to get to the street.

    PS -- Neal is correct (again). DO not caulk under the rim of the toilet. Some poeple like the aesthetics of the look, so you can compromise by leaving the caulk off the backside of the toilet which would allow a leak to be seen.
     
  15. May 29, 2013 #15

    nealtw

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    Whenthe toilet was removed it had a spacer. If that was left out the flange is below the floor and needs considerably more wax.
     
  16. May 30, 2013 #16

    o2284200

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    When you say "auger", sounds like you're talking about the Mini-Rooter type in Neal's video post not the 3' or 6' type.

    Scope it...Yes, great idea,,,Thanks! Actually, I had all the stacks and the main clean out scoped before I bought the place...and the ,ain showed some very small roots coming into the pipe at about 44'.
     
  17. May 30, 2013 #17

    o2284200

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    I put the spacer back, which became flush with the floor but I did not put any caulk like it had a lot of before.
     
  18. May 30, 2013 #18

    nealtw

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    The flange would have made the water go down the pipe, but the sewer gas would have had a free run into your house. I wouldn't trust chaulk to seal good to the cast iron, perhaps, part of a wax ring between the iron and the spacer.
     

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