When a toilet starts leaking at the base, it may seem like an impossible fix. This tutorial will show you how to rapidly perform the repairs you need, including finding the cause of your toilet leak, the equipment you’ll need, what to do about the leak, and how to avoid any future ones.
Signs A Toilet Is Leaking At The Base
Toilets leak from time to time, this is nothing new. However, when one does, it can be disconcerting, and even lead to nearby floor or wall damage. But what are the signs a toilet is leaking at the base?
Here are some common signs:
- Water on the floor around your toilet.
- Stains on the floor or walls next to the toilet.
- Dust or dirt build-up near the toilet base.
- Foul, moldy, or sewage smell near the toilet.
- Wet or damp feet when walking barefoot or in socks next to the toilet.
Fortunately, there are some reasons for a toilet to leak at the base, and easy ways to fix them.
Toilets Leak At The Base For 4 Reasons
Toilet leaks aren’t a cause for alarm, but no one enjoys strolling into the toilet with dry socks and returning with damp socks. Toilets that leak at the base are relatively simple to repair using basic DIY instructions.
Some of the reasons why your toilet may be leaking from the base are listed below.
1. Tightening The Tee Bolts Is Required
Two bolts called tee bolts secure the base of your toilet to the ground. The toilet will likely rock if these bolts loosen, causing the wax ring seal to break.
If your tee bolts are excessively loose, drain water may flow out of the base every time you flush the toilet.
2. The Wax Ring Needs Replacement
Because the toilet is loose, the wax ring typically has to be changed.
Another reason a wax ring may need to be changed is if it has been worn down and is no longer malleable over time. This indicates that the seal is broken. As a result, water seeps through the foundation.
3. The Water Supply Line Is Loose
If your water supply line is loose, you’ll notice that water is always pouring from the base of your toilet, not only when you flush it.
Make sure that the nut and rubber seal on the connection between the supply line and the tank is snug.
4. Water Is Condensing And Dripping Down The Toilet
The water in a toilet tank and bowl, as well as the porcelain, is normally rather chilly. Water drips down from the porcelain on the bowl in a damp atmosphere, and you’ll see water gathering at the base of your toilet.
You may collect the necessary equipment to repair the toilet after you’ve discovered the cause of the leak.
To Stop Your Toilet From Leaking, Use the Following Tools and Supplies
Here are some of the most important items for repairing a toilet that is leaking from the bottom.
To remove some of the nuts and bolts that hold your toilet sealed to the ground, you’ll need a wrench. Check to see whether the wrench needs to be adjustable.
Depending on the kind of toilet you have, you may require a set of screwdrivers to remove different toilet pieces and disassemble them for repair.
It’s important to clean around the base of your toilet using an anti-bacterial cleaner for the bathroom. This ensures you properly clean the leaking toilet water.
Cloths for Cleaning
Make sure you have multiple dry cloths for cleaning to complete this project. Terry cloth and microfiber towels work best.
Putty Knife, Washers, Gaskets, Toilet Bolts, Toilet Wax Ring
You’ll need to get a toilet repair kit, which comes with everything you’ll need to complete the task. If you like, you may buy washers, toilet bolts, and other pieces separately.
Cordless Drill or Driver
Manually removing some of the nuts and bolts may be challenging. To make tight bolts simpler to remove, make sure you have a power tool, such as a cordless drill.
It’s possible that some bolts have been removed and rusted. When it comes to removing rusted and stripped bolts, having a hacksaw on hand may save you a lot of time and aggravation.
Cut through toilet bolts at the base, toilet seat plastic bolts, and any additional toilet bolts using the hacksaw.
It’s a pain to fix a toilet foundation leak. Make sure you’re wearing gloves to keep your hands safe.
Caulking is required to reseal the toilet’s edges to the ground.
You’re ready to begin the procedure of repairing your toilet leak now that you have all of your equipment and supplies.
How To Stop Leaking Around The Base Of Your Toilet
The “how to stop a toilet from leaking at base” is a plumbing problem that can be fixed by following these 6 steps:
1. Look For Any Signs Of Condensation
Before you begin your toilet repair operation, ensure sure the issue isn’t caused by condensation on the exterior of the toilet bowl.
If water is dripping from the base of your toilet due to condensation, consider the following steps to keep it from dripping:
- Set up a tray.
- Protect your water tank by insulating it.
- Make sure your flapper is in good working order.
- Showers should be shorter and colder, and the fan should be turned on.
If this isn’t the issue, keep looking for the root of the problem.
2. Tighten The Tee Bolts If Necessary
Remove the plastic coverings from both sides of the toilet’s base. Tighten the tee bolts using an adjustable open-end wrench. The wax ring that closes the toilet drain outlet is crushed when the toilet is pushed against the floor.
You may need to remove and reinstall the toilet to install a new wax ring and new bolts if the tee bolts are already tight or can’t be tightened.
3. Disconnect The Toilet And Remove It
Before you start disconnecting your toilet, turn off the water. The shutdown valve is normally found at the water supply tube and the water valve tailpiece on the left side of the toilet.
- To drain all of the water from your toilet and tank, flush it. To remove extra water from the toilet tank and bowl, use a sponge or towel.
- Next, loosen the nut that connects the supply tube to the fill valve tailpiece using a screwdriver.
- Remove the nuts from the tee bolts at the bottom of the toilet using your tool. If the tee bolts are rusty and won’t spin, you may need to cut each bolt with a hacksaw.
- Lift the toilet away from the floor drain by raising it up. Instead of trying to move the toilet on your own, it may be more beneficial to have someone assist you.
- To avoid damage, turn the toilet on its side.
4. Remove The Old Wax Ring And Replace it
Using a putty knife, scrape away the old wax from around the drain hole. Make certain that all of the old wax has been removed.
Once all of the putty has been scraped away, replace the wax ring. With the plastic cone pointing down toward the drain, the ring will be put. Make that the tee bolts are properly positioned in the key apertures on both sides of the flange.
5. Replace The Toilet Seat
Carefully lift the toilet and set it back over the drain, allowing the tee bolts to pass through the holes in the toilet’s base. Press the toilet against the wax ring, gently swaying it to compress the wax and produce a tight seal.
Tighten the tee bolts and nuts with a wrench, being careful not to overtighten them, since this might shatter the porcelain.
6. Join the Water Line To The Power Line
Turn the water back on by reconnecting the water supply tubing to the fill valve. After the toilet tank has filled back up, flush the toilet and check for leaks. Seal the base of your toilet with caulk after you’re confident there are no leaks.
Examine these instructions thoroughly so that you can fix your toilet leak on your own.
5 Ways to Prevent Toilet Leaks In The Future
Examine these five methods for preventing toilet leaks to minimize future harm:
1. Repair Any Leaking Toilets As Soon As Possible
Don’t wait for a toilet leak to become a major issue before addressing it. To avoid persistent leaks, keep your toilet in good working order.
In the long term, repairing the toilet leak as soon as possible saves you money on your water bill.
2. Items Other Than Human Waste And Toilet Paper Should Not Be Flushed
Because they don’t break down like toilet paper, flushing materials that don’t belong in a toilet may create serious plumbing issues and blockages. More than a tiny leak at the base of your toilet might be caused by clogged pipes.
3. To Unclog Your Toilet, Avoid Using Chemical Drain Cleaners
Chemical drain cleaners should not be flushed down the toilet. These cleansers have the potential to harm old pipelines and plumbing fittings.
4. Every Six Months, Inspect the Components Of Your Toilet
Check your toilet components twice a year to make sure they’re still working correctly so you’re not surprised by a toilet leak when you least expect it.
This proactive strategy helps you to address minor toilet issues before they become major issues.
5. When You Have A Plumbing Emergency, Call A Plumber
Some toilet plumbing issues are uncontrollable. When it comes to plumbing problems, hiring a skilled plumber relieves your concerns and worry.
When you hire a skilled plumber, you can be certain that your toilet leak will be repaired properly the first time.
Dealing with minor plumbing issues, such as a toilet that leaks at the base, today helps to avoid severe plumbing issues in the future.
A toilet can also leak at the base when the shower is on. This is a common problem found in homes. There are many ways to fix it, and these (and other) prevention tips can help you avoid this issue altogether.
A leak around the base of your toilet is a minor issue when compared to some other plumbing problems you could face. For more, check out Four Ways to Handle a Broken Sewage Pipe.
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