How much does it cost to replace a toilet wax ring?
On average, homeowners pay around $243 to fix a broken toilet. The cost can usually range from $148 and $349. In some cases, a professional plumber will charge a flat rate for a project. This rate may be affected depending on the location and the complexity of the project.
Some plumbers charge an hourly rate of $45 to $200 per hour for their services. In rural areas, the cost of hiring a plumber is usually around $45 to $75. However, take note that this is a finicky job and you may need to give a tip to your plumber depending on what you have agreed.
But first what is a toilet wax ring? Behind every good toiler is a good wax ring, which is exactly what it sounds like. It is a ring made of sticky wax located beneath your toilet. IT helps form a watertight seal between the sewer pipe and the bottom of your toilet.
It doesn’t need a lot of maintenance – not until 30 years later or more. But sometimes, wax rings can dry out and crumble. When that happens, you need to replace them as soon as possible.
Can I DIY Toilet Wax Ring Replacement?
A toilet wax ring replacement is not at all a time-consuming task. However, since it is a finicky job, it is better left to a professional who can do it better. It is one of those plumbing repairs that homeowners complain about as the seal often leaks after the installation.
Unfortunately, not everyone has success in ascertaining what the real problem is. You usually must use another fresh wax ring once you have botched the job. You have to center and lower the heavy toiler correctly on the bolts where most installers fail.
So when would you need to replace the toilet wax ring? Well, if you notice any leaking around the base of your toiler, the seal may be broken. Assuming you are introducing another bathroom floor, you will probably need to eliminate the latrine to tile up to the base. This requires a wax ring substitution. Another case, if your sewer upholds, as this regularly breaks the seal. You will know whether it’s messed up by leaking liquid around the base.
Replacing toilet rings gets especially tricky. And if there are dips or bulges in the area of the floor that houses the toilet, you need to watch out for it too. Sometimes, you might even need to stack two rings to compensate for the gap.
Broken seals are not usually a big issue unless you have no spare bathroom to use. If your encounter this problem, we suggest that you call a professional right away just to ensure that the job is done right.
How to Replace Your Toilet Wax Ring
Wax rings are available at most hardware stores for just $10 or less. If you can buy and do it yourself, the following tools are what you need.
- Adjustable wrench
- Putty knife
- Towels or paper towels
- Drain, Dry & Disconnect
Turn off the water supply line that leads from the wall to your toilet.
Just run your hand on the valve but if you haven’t moved it for several years, it might be hard to turn. You need to flush the toilet to bail as much water as possible from the bowl and tank.
Otherwise, you may have to utilize a combination of plunging and bailing. In this case, you can use a manual vacuum. You can also bail by hand or sop up with towels to get the bow fully dry. Next, disconnect the water supply from your water tank to the bowl. When you notice a little water coming out of the line, prepare your bucket to catch it.
Remove the Toilet
As we have said, fixing the ring wax cannot be done by a single person. If you want to do it yourself, you need someone to assist you because at this point you will be removing the toilet. Also, remove the protective caps that cover the bolts at the base of the toilet using an adjustable wrench. Once all caps and bolts are removed, just twist the toilet a bit and you should be able to loosen it up.
When you are ready, get a good grip and pull the bowl. Lift with the knees, and pull it straight up. Then you can set it aside.
Scrape the crumbing wax away
This is actually where the real work starts. Use your putty knife to remove as much of the old wax ring as you can. Start from the bottom of the toilet to the pipe fitting on the floor.
Once you see the flange, you need to clean and dry it too. Assess whether there is any debris left on the position and once everything is ready, you can proceed.
Place New Wax Ring
Nowadays, you will find self-adhesive wax rings in the local hardware near you. You should also see a small design variation among brands. Hence, you need to take closely what brand you have previously used.
Most wax rings can either be affixed to the bottom of the toilet or the top of the flange. Simply choose whichever you are comfortable with. Once you have successfully installed the wax ring, you can install your toilet back in its position. Make sure that the bolt holes are aligned with the holes in the flange.
Take a Seat on your Toilet Bowl
Close your toilet bowl cover and sit on it. Use your weight to apply pressure and compress the wax ring into place. Shift your position as needed and feel the fixtures at the bottom.
In the end, your goal is for your toilet to flush properly. With the done, simply replace the mounting bolts and bolt covers. Then reattach the water supply line to the tank. Once everything has completely dried and realigned, reopen the supply line valve.
Flush your toilet to test. Make sure that no water goes to the floor. If there is no leak, then it means you have done the job right.
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