Bathroom Floor under Toilet

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  #1  
Old 02-24-04, 10:39 AM
lovinlife
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Question Bathroom Floor under Toilet

Can someone help me? I've come into a problem with the floor under my toilet, when I took it up to replace it with a new toilet the hole under the toilet was the same size as the toilet it self, instead of the round hole just for the flange. Can someone tell me how to put a new floor down and what supplies I will need to do a proper job and then how to bolt the flange to the floor, right now its just sitting out there and not attached to anything. Will the floor come up easily or will I have to cut it off? How many people will it take to do the job as well. Once the floor is down do I have to get it tiled before I can put the toilet back in place?
Thanks to anyone who can help,
So Confused!
Teresa
 
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  #2  
Old 02-24-04, 04:55 PM
Tom_J
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Teresa,

Before I really "over-think" myself, what type of flooring do you have in your bath? You say that the finished flooring (I'm inferring here) was laid up to the toilet but not beneath it.

If I can ease your mind on one of your concerns, don't worry about the flange at this point. The flange isn't "weight-bearing", or, at least, shouldn't be, so the fact that it's not bolted down isn't really an issue. The floor supports the weight, not the flange.

If you can describe for us the height from the subfloor that the toilet was resting on to the top of the finished floor, that would help a lot.

Without seeming to be getting too personal, what type of home do you live in, i.e. a mobile home would have a different layout than a site-built home would? As a "for instance", my "old" bathroom floor had a 3/4" plywood subfloor (attached to the floor joists) with one inch of mortar laid over metal lath (coarse screen, for lack of a better way to describe it) and 3/16" ceramic tile for the finish flooring. Had mine been laid out the way that you describe that yours is, the "hole" would be approximately 1 1/2" deep. (Doesn't sound like that's the case, but we need to know. )

Tom
 
  #3  
Old 02-25-04, 09:13 AM
lovinlife
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Goodmorning Tom,

I'm figuring the subfloor is 3/4 inch and then there seems to be very old vinyl tiles (like old kitchen floors had) then there is newer vinyl type of tiles (no ceramic tiles are on the floor). The toilet is only resting on about if your lucky 1/2 in of floor in the back and one side and maybe 1 inch of floor in the front and other side. The toilet is rocking again, which is the whole reason I replaced it in the first place other than being an ugly shade of blue.

I'm in a ranch style home.

I'm thinking I really need to build up some floor under the toilet to rest the toilet on better, but I have no idea where to even start.
Teresa
 
  #4  
Old 02-25-04, 08:02 PM
Tom_J
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Teresa,

Sorry to be getting back to you so late in the day.

In a nutshell, you're going to have to rip up everything down to the 3/4" subfloor. Starting from scratch, so to speak.

From there, you'll need to measure from the subfloor to the top of your toilet flange. That'll give you an idea as to where to start.

Bare minimum, you'll need to lay 1/4" backerboard on a 1/4" layer of thinset (light mortar) and screw it to the subfloor. Talk to a pro at a tile shop for the materials. (I used a material called Dens-Shield as an underlayment. Much like drywall but designed for flooring. Very nice to work with. Not nearly as intimidating for a DIY project as you might think. )

The main thing that you'll have to accomplish is to get the floor level. There is an array of leveling products on the market, but again, talk to a pro. Basically, you pour these onto your floor and they level themselves. There are some things that you have to do to ensure that the material doesn't go helter-skelter all over the place, but it's not a big deal.

Your choice of finished flooring will probably be determined by the remaining "height" that you have to work with. Once again, don't let the toilet flange, relative to the height of the floor, intimidate you. Toilet seals can easily be "built up" to accomodate any differences in the height of the floor to the top of the flange. (I wouldn't go crazy with it, but even 3/4" wouldn't pose a big problem.)

Tom
 
  #5  
Old 02-26-04, 11:21 AM
lovinlife
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Thank you Tom,

I hope to get started this weekend, thank you for all of your assistance.
Teresa
 
  #6  
Old 02-26-04, 05:07 PM
Tom_J
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Teresa,

If you get the time, keep us posted on how things are going. Once you get started, I know that your time will be at a premium and you'll probably think that it took less time to build the pyramids. (Very true in the case of my bathroom project! )

Best of luck.

Tom
 
  #7  
Old 02-26-04, 06:09 PM
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Bathroom floors

If your worried about the rocking of the toilet, its because your high centered...The toilet is most likely sitting on the flange, not the floor. The wax ring is likely flattened. Shut off the water supply, flush the toilet and sponge out the rest, remove the flange bolts and toilet.Place a carpenters square across the flange to see if the area is flat The flange itself will sit above the finish floor the thickness of the flange ring. There should be 4 wood screws holding down the collar, two slots with brass T or J bolts. If wood is missing under the flange collar, you'll need to remove a section that bridges both joist. You might save the flange by using exterior plywood and split it around the pipe, like a guillatine neck brace.when the toilet goes back on use a fresh wax seal & john bolts. The toilet goes on top of the finished floor. I prefer a one piece vinyl (no joints for water to get under). If you have someone with soldering skills, an anti sweat valve is in orderThis is likely why the wood is missing or rotted,..I put one in, and the toilet NEVER sweats, even on the most humid days with multiple flushes...
 
  #8  
Old 02-27-04, 08:02 AM
lovinlife
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Thank you for the reply. How thick should the plywood be and and thick should the splits be around the pipe? And should this be entirely around the flange and as tight as possble around it? I'm trying to make a mental picture of it so I know what I'm attempting to do. The hole under the toilet is almost the exact size as the bottom of the toilet. I really hate to ask a stupid question but what is a joist that your talking about? Is that the structure under the top of the floor from one slate to another?
Thank you,
Teresa
 
  #9  
Old 02-27-04, 10:32 AM
lovinlife
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I have another question: The flange sits 3/4 to almost 1 inch above the floor and it looks like the flange was welded down, there is a crack in the flange on the back side where a screw could go into, so how do I replace it????? And what do I do about all the above floor gap?
Thanks,
Teresa
 
  #10  
Old 02-27-04, 06:10 PM
Tom_J
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Teresa,

Call a licensed plumber. The flange has to be replaced since it's cracked and you'll need a licensed professional to do it. Not a DIY project. (The "weld" you speak of is lead and it's poured into the seam between the flange and waste pipe in a molten state and then tamped down with special tools. You need a pro. )

You haven't mentioned what type of flooring you expect to put down in your bath. There will be height issues where transitioning from the bathroom floor to the outer floor (a hallway, perhaps) is involved.

Ceramic tile will require building the floor up where you'll probably want to leave the new flange at its current height from the subfloor.

Linoleum, or something similar, may allow you to have the height of the flange lowered when it's replaced. (Not my choice of the way to go, but...)

To answer your question about joists, they are, in fact, the boards laid on edge beneath your flooring and support it across your home. Cross-bracing should be used beneath the bathtub, toilet, showers, etc. where heavy loads might be found.

Cutting to the chase, so to speak? I think you're in over your head from a DIY standpoint. Please understand that I'm not being critical in the least. Far from it. I just think that there are times when you have to call in professionals. Probably not the advice that you want, but I've had a bathroom "out of commission" for several weeks now because I can "do it myself". Actually, I can, but time is such a big factor...)

Tom
 
  #11  
Old 02-27-04, 07:47 PM
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tools of the trade

I'm an HVAC tech and you won't believe the amount of tools I need to do my job...I also worked as a carpenter in my earlier years...the point being... the tradesman has the knowledge and tools required for this, and if your talking cast iron...don't waste your time trying to do this one... Have him drop in the plywood for you while he's at it, to be even with the rest of your floor, and secure a new flange.
PS the fumes from the pipe are poisonous... don't leave it off too long.
 
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