Toilet wax ring, on toilet or flange first?

jerry_njSeptember 7, 2008

I have installed a few toilets over the years and have always placed the wax ring on the toilet, then placed the toilet over the flange, carefully aligning the holes with the "wobbly" closet bolts. This is the way recommended in the current new toilet's installation instructions.

However, consulting my copy of Creative Homeowner Plumbing book I see they recommend "Install the new wax gasket on the toilet flange. Press the bolts into the wax to hold them upright." Next step, "using the closet bolts as guide, set the bowl onto the flange gasket..."

This latter method seems like it would be the better method, as the wax holding the bolts erect seems better having the bolts wiggle around while lowering the bowel with wax ring hanging on best it can. On the other hand, with the wax ring on the toilet, we know the bowel hole is aligned with the wax ring, not off-set some small amount.


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The replacement closet bolts I have bought come with two sets of nuts per bolt. Use the first one to fasten the bolt to the flange and the second to hold down the toilet. No more wiggly bolts. The wax ring compresses and will cover any small irregularities. I put them on the flange first now as it is much easier.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2008 at 10:27PM
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Thanks, I didn't look to see what the clearance is between the flange and the toilet base. It must be more than the height of a net, I'll supply my own as the bolts came two bolts, two nuts, two plastic washers to hold caps, to metal washers and two caps. I'll supply the additional two nuts from my stock.

I'll do the wax ring on the flange this time, thanks.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 9:23AM
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Toilet installed and operational.

I decided to put the wax ring on the toilet and set on the flange as a unit.

This toilet is a low cost Glacier Bay from Home Depot and has a lot of quality look and feel and evens some "extra" parts. For one thing the closet bolts came with push on plastic washers that I used to hold the bolts vertical while I lowered the toilet. This is the first "extra" parts.

Then on mounting the tank to the base the supplied bolts had the expected high-quality rust-resistant materials, and had the usual screw slot head inside the tank followed with a metal washer and a 1/8" (or so) rubber (or similar) washer. Then for the other end were the matching metal washer and nut. But, for some reason, more extra parts, regular steel-looking elongated washer and wing nut. The instructions did not go into detail on what this was for, but as it came in the package on the end of the closet bolts, I added them to the underside of the toiled lip...suppose they operate as a "lock-down", but whatever, I've never seen this arrangement before. Again, this is a very low cost unit, I'd expect fewer parts, not more.

So far, so good.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2008 at 1:53PM
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Oh no!... NOT Glacier Bay (aka Home DeSpot's in-house ChiCom sweatshop brand)!!! Say it ain't SO! ;')

All I can say is:

1) Their bathroom (lavatory) faucets are CRAP!
2)... do NOT lose that receipt!
3) Best of luck!

    Bookmark   February 23, 2009 at 8:08PM
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