Toilet Installation Video

Toilet installation

Hello and we’d like to welcome you back to We thought that a re-cap should accompany our video so you could follow along at home or in your office.

All of our upcoming videos will have a printable recap with the tools and materials used so you can literally print it and take it to your local plumbing wholesaler or home center to get what you need.

If there are any questions or comments please don’t hesitate to leave it in our comments section or you can reach us @ We will attempt to address each issue as quickly as possible. Just as a side note Jim the Plumber featured in the video is the actual real life plumber in our Stump the Plumber section. We hope you find the video informative and please stayed tuned because we have many more to come.

Tools Used

  • Crescent Wrench-Crescent wrench (aka adjustable wrench) is a brand name but they are all they same and used to remove the nuts in this project
  • Scraper-A paint scraper or putty knife will do to remove wax and caulk.
  • Hack Saw-A saw will be needed if the closet collar bolt do not fit under cap
  • Razor Blade-Used to remove excess caulk from floor so new caulk will adhere properly
  • Flat Head screw driver- used to remove cap on closet collar bolts.

Material Used

  • Wax Ring-The seal between the toilet and closet collar. The thickness will be decided by the height of the collar
  • Caulk-Latex caulk is easier to use and can be cleaned up with water, silicone is much more difficult to work with and is not cleanable with water
  • Putty-Plumbers putty may be needed to build up toilet if uneven, shims work well also
  • Closet Collar Bolts-The 2 bolt that hold the toilet to the closet collar. It is VERY important not to overtighten thses bolts.
  • Newspaper or Old Towel-Used to collect excess water from toilet after removed and to protect the surface the toilet is placed on

Step By Step

  1. Locate water supply which is on the left side of the toilet 99% of the time– Turn the valve clock wise until the handle stops moving.
  2. Remove lid from toilet and safely place on floor– Flush toilet and hold handle down until all water is out of tank. Confirm the water is shut off by listen or watching for water entering tank.
  3. Remove the water from the toilet bowl- Use a small disposable cup and remove as much water as you can from the bowl.
  4. Disconnect supply from shut off valve– Loosen the nut located on the valve itself and follow the supply line up to the toilet and remove the nut connected to the toilet. You may need a pair of channel locks if your adjustable wrench doesn’t open large enough.
  5. Remove caps from closet bolts– You can use a flat head screw driver to pry the caps off.
  6. Remove nuts and washers– Loosen and remove the nuts and washers with an adjustable wrench
  7. Score caulk– If there is caulk you will need a razor blade to cut through the caulk. This caulk will hold the the toilet to the floor even without the bolts. Use caution when working with sharp tools
  8. Check that toilet is Free– Grab hold of the bowl, not the tank and make sure the bowl can be lifted from the floor. If the toilet is still stuck more caulk will have to be cut with the razor blade.
  9. Remove toilet– Grab the toilet between the area of the tank and seat and lift the toilet(remember to lift with the knees). Make sure you have the newspapers or towels out an  and have picked a place to place the toilet.
  10. Remove old Wax-Use the scraper to remove the old excess wax. If the bolts are corroded they will have to be replaced, if they look good and the bolts came off without a struggle they can stay.
  11. Remove old caulk– Use the scraper to remove the old caulk on the floor. If excess caulk is on the toilet remove that as well.
  12. Install new closet collar bolts– If the old bolts were in bad condition you must install new bolts. The bolts will slide into the bigger parts of the slots on the closet collar. The bolts should be located and 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock. Make sure to use the plastic retaining rings to hold the bolt in place.
  13. Install new wax ring– The jury is out on this but if you follow our directions you will not have any problems. Make sure the wax ring is located directly center of the hole going down into the floor. The height of the closet collar is going to be the deciding factor for the thickness of the wax ring. If the collar is even with the floor you will need an extra thick ring, if the collar is slightly above the floor you will need a normal ring.

  1. Prepare for setting toilet– Make sure the wax ring is positioned properly and the bolts are looking straight up at 9 and 3 o’clock and the area is clear of debris.
  2. Setting the toilet– Lift to toilet carefully and set the toilet on the bolts. You want to make sure both bolts are visible before letting the toilet rest on the wax ring. Once the toilet is on the wax ring it is important to use a steady force to push the toilet to the floor (do not use a rocking motion this can ruin the wax ring. Once the toilet is resting on the floor make sure it feels solid, if the is an uneven floor the toilet may rock and shims will be needed. Make sure the shims are made of plastic of steel, do not use wood because it could deterioate.
  3. Make sure toilet is square– Take a look at the tank in relation to the wall and make sure it is square with the wall. Also take a step back to make sure it looks good.
  4. Tightening the bolts– First place the plastic retaining piece with the “this side up” pointing up. This should be followed by the large washer and the nut. First hand tighten the nuts, then slowly tighten the nut until the toilet does not move. Make sure to tighten both side evenly, do not tighten one side all the way then the other. These nuts can break the toilet so the goal is not to make them as tight as possible, rather as tight as needed.
  5. Cut Bolts– If the bolt are too long it will be necessary to cut the bolt down. Usually you can use a hack saw or sawzall blade to do this. It is only necessary to cut 1/2 to 3/4 of the way through then you can break the bolt off. Check that the nuts and toilet are still secure.
  6. Caulk Toilet to floor– If you use a latex based caulk you can force the caulk into the space between the toilet and the floor. Try to make an even bead all the way around. Then you can take your finger and force the caulk into the space while removing excess caulk. You may have to clean your finger more than once during this process. After all excess has been removed you can used a sponge that is wet but been wrung out to smooth the caulk, rince the sponge often during this process.
  7. Install water supply– If you have a suply line that is like a tube and is in good shape you can re use it. If you installed a new toilet odd are it will not be the same size. Flexible stainless steel supplies are great but if it is old, you should replace it. Start by connect both the valve side and toilet side and make them both hand tight. Tighten the valve on down completely. When tighten the toilet side take care not to break the plastic nut.
  8. Turn water on– Turn the supply valve counter-clockwise until it stops and check for leaks. The most common spots for leaks will be the connections on the water supply.
  9. Flush the toilet-Flush the toilet a few times and check for leaks on the floor, if there is water coming from the toilet there may be a leak on the wax ring and the whole process will have to be started over.

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