Skip to content

What Do I Need to Install a Toilet

  • by
An image showing a well-lit bathroom with a step-by-step visual guide: a wrench tightening a wax ring on the toilet flange, followed by a toilet bowl being placed on the flange, and finally a screwdriver attaching the tank to the bowl

Did you know that the average person spends approximately three years of their life on the toilet? That’s a significant amount of time!

If you’re planning to install a toilet yourself, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, I will provide you with a step-by-step guide on what you need to successfully install a toilet.

From the necessary tools and materials to the finishing touches, I’ll walk you through the process with technical precision and detail.

Let’s get started!

Key Takeaways

  • The tools and materials needed for toilet installation include a wrench, screwdriver, level, measuring tape, wax ring, bolts, water supply line, and toilet flange.
  • Before installing the toilet, it is important to inspect the toilet flange for any cracks or damages, measure and mark the location of the toilet, protect the floor with cardboard or a drop cloth, disconnect the water supply, and remove any obstacles around the toilet.
  • To remove the old toilet, locate and close the shut-off valve, flush the toilet and remove excess water, unscrew the nut connecting the water supply line, and unscrew the nuts securing the toilet to the floor. Finally, lift and remove the old toilet.
  • When installing the new toilet, ensure the wax ring is properly aligned with the toilet flange, set the new toilet in place, tighten the closet bolts evenly to prevent leaks, connect the water supply line, and check for any issues and troubleshoot if necessary.

Tools and Materials

You’ll need a few tools and materials to install a toilet properly. Let me share some toilet installation tips and common mistakes to avoid.

First, gather these tools: a wrench, a screwdriver, a level, and a measuring tape. You’ll also need a wax ring, bolts, a water supply line, and a toilet flange.

When installing the toilet, make sure to align the wax ring with the flange and press it firmly in place. Secure the toilet to the floor using the bolts, but be careful not to overtighten them. Use a level to ensure the toilet is straight and adjust as needed.

Connect the water supply line and turn on the water to check for leaks. One common mistake is not tightening the bolts enough, leading to a wobbly toilet. Another mistake is not properly sealing the wax ring, causing leaks.

Preparing the Area

Before starting, make sure the area’s flooring is clean and free from any debris. This is important to ensure a smooth and stable installation of the toilet.

Here are some essential steps to prepare the area:

  • Inspect the toilet flange: Check if the toilet flange is securely attached to the floor and in good condition. If there are any cracks or damages, it should be replaced before proceeding with the installation.

  • Measure and mark the location: Use a measuring tape to determine the correct position for the toilet. Mark the center of the flange on the floor to ensure accurate placement.

  • Protect the floor: Place a sturdy piece of cardboard or a drop cloth around the area where you will be working. This will protect the floor from scratches or any potential water damage.

  • Disconnect the water supply: Locate the shut-off valve near the toilet and turn it off. Flush the toilet to drain the remaining water from the tank and bowl.

  • Remove any obstacles: Clear the area around the toilet, removing any rugs, mats, or other items that may obstruct the installation process.

Now that the area is prepared, we can move on to the next step of removing the old toilet.

Removing the Old Toilet

To start the process, it’s time to disconnect the water supply to the old toilet.

First, locate the shut-off valve, usually located near the bottom left side of the toilet. Turn the valve clockwise until it is fully closed.

Next, flush the toilet to drain any remaining water in the tank and bowl. Use a sponge or towel to soak up any excess water.

Now, remove the water supply line from the bottom of the tank by unscrewing the nut connecting it to the fill valve. If the nut is stuck, use pliers for extra leverage.

Finally, remove the bolts securing the toilet to the floor by unscrewing the nuts. If the bolts are rusted or damaged, use a hacksaw to cut them.

With the water supply disconnected and the bolts removed, the old toilet is ready to be lifted and removed.

Now that the old toilet has been successfully removed, it’s time to move on to installing the new toilet.

Installing the New Toilet

Now that the old toilet is gone, it’s important to prepare the area for the new one. Before installation, make sure you have the following items:

  • Wax ring: This creates a watertight seal between the toilet and the floor drain.
  • Closet bolts: These secure the toilet to the floor.
  • Water supply line: Connects the toilet to the water source.
  • Adjustable wrench: Used to tighten and loosen nuts and bolts.
  • Level: Ensures that the toilet is installed correctly and level with the ground.

To avoid common installation mistakes, double-check that the wax ring is properly aligned with the toilet flange before setting the toilet in place. Tighten the closet bolts evenly to prevent leaks.

If you encounter any issues during installation, such as a rocking toilet or a leak, troubleshooting may involve adjusting the wax ring, tightening the closet bolts, or inspecting the water supply line for any leaks or blockages.

Finishing Touches

Once you have completed the installation, don’t forget to clean up any excess wax or debris from around the base of the toilet.

Now that the toilet is securely in place, it’s time to consider some finishing touches. One important aspect is choosing the right toilet seat option. There are various types available, such as standard seats, soft-close seats, or even heated seats for added comfort. Consider factors like durability, ease of cleaning, and personal preferences when making your selection.

Additionally, it’s essential to think about your bathroom flooring options. Opt for materials that are water-resistant, easy to clean, and durable, such as ceramic tiles, vinyl, or laminate. These choices will not only enhance the overall aesthetic of your bathroom but also ensure longevity and easy maintenance.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Choose the Right Size Toilet for My Bathroom?

When choosing a toilet size for your bathroom, consider the dimensions of the space and the clearance required. Measure the distance from the wall to the toilet seat and ensure the flushing mechanism fits properly.

Can I Install a New Toilet on My Own or Do I Need to Hire a Professional?

I can install a new toilet on my own by following these toilet installation tips. However, it’s important to avoid common mistakes such as improper sealing and incorrect alignment to ensure a successful installation.

Are There Any Special Considerations for Installing a Toilet in a Basement Bathroom?

When installing a toilet in a basement bathroom, there are a few special considerations to keep in mind. Proper ventilation is crucial to prevent mold growth, and a sewage pump may be necessary for waste removal.

What Is the Average Cost of Installing a New Toilet?

The average cost of toilet installation can vary depending on factors such as location, materials, and labor. It is important to budget for expenses such as the toilet itself, plumbing supplies, and professional installation services.

Can I Use the Same Wax Ring When Replacing an Old Toilet With a New One?

Yes, you can reuse a wax ring when replacing an old toilet with a new one, but it is not recommended. It is best to use a new wax ring to ensure a proper seal.


Well, congratulations! Now that you know all the tools and materials needed, how to prepare the area, remove the old toilet, and install the new one, you’re officially equipped to tackle the task of toilet installation.

Who knew it could be such a thrilling experience? So, go forth and embrace the world of toilets with your newfound knowledge.

May your toilet installation endeavors be as exciting as they are precise and detailed.

Happy plumbing!