Toilet seal leak?


Old 01-22-01, 11:11 AM
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In our 4.5 year-old house, our vinyl flooring (over concrete slab) all around our toilet is turning greyish-blue. I have read on other sites that this might be due to water/moisture under the vinyl. Since there is no obvious sign of water leaks on any surface, what can I do to find out where the water is coming from?

1. How do I remove the toilet and what do I need to replace?

2. How can I tell if it's a leak in the wall? (drywall directly behind toilet shows no evidence of water damage, yet there is a blue area on the vinyl under the water pipe, right at the base of the wall. (it is an outside wall, with brick veneer outside.)

2a.Should I cut into the wall to see if there is a leak?

3. Or should I really hire a plumber, and would they fix any areas in the wall that they rip out?

4. Any info. about replacing the vinyl? I have extra to use for replacement, it's about a 3'x3' area.

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Old 01-22-01, 12:05 PM
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Lake Murray, SC USA
Posts: 1,461

I guess the first thing I would do is pull the commode and check the wax ring. To do this, shut off the water valve in the line that feeds the toilet tank. Then, flush the commode and hold the handle down to get as much water out of the toilet tank, as will naturally drain. Now disconnect the water line where it goes into the bottom of the toilet tank. Remove the nuts from the two studs that attach the toilet to the floor (these are around the bottom edge of the toilet and usually have matching color covers that pop off or lift off. Now you are ready to lift the toilet off of the floor, keeping it level so as to minimize water spillage. Set it down on the floor a couple of feet away.

Now, you can look at the wax ring seal, and see if there is an obvious sign of a leak. Check the closet flange for a crack. Assume your toilet did not "rock" and was securely held to the floor before you discovered this problem. You may have to post back and let us know what you find.

You will need to put a new wax ring seal on, before you reset the toilet.

At this point, I would not cut into the wall until you first assure yourself you don't have a leak the closet flange or wax seal ring.

Plumber 2000 will probably be along later with some pictures to help!!
Old 01-22-01, 02:08 PM
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Join Date: May 2000
Location: Eugene, Oregon
Posts: 5,841
Sounds like the wax ring has failed, see this toilet picture,

See picture of this toilet.

Shut off water to toilet.

Remove all water from tank and bowl.

Remove supply line.

Remove bolts at base of toilet.

Lift toilet from flange.

Remove and scrape old wax off bottom of toilet and off the flange.

If top of flange is flush or below the finish floor line, install two wax rings stack them on top of each other, if it is 1/4" above the finish floor then one wax ring is all you will need. Wax will spread out eaiser if the wax is at room tempature.

Install new bolts at this time if needed

Set toilet back into position, and rock toilet back and forth until the wax spreads and toilet sets flush on floor.

Install the bolts and tighten up, do not over tighten.

I would recommend installing a new suppy line at this time

Turn the water back on to toilet and check for leaks.


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