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Thread: Wax Ring question

  1. #1
    DIY Member schipperke's Avatar
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    Default Wax Ring question

    I pulled a toilet, there is an ABS flange that resembles an LP (remember those?) left in a hot car. The flange is fairly flush with the finished floor , not on top. Should I go with a thicker than standard wax ring? I've also read here to place the ring on the flange, then drop in the bowl. Every box I see, it reads to put the wax ring on the bowl first. Placing the wax ring on the flange first appears better to me, but would anyone explain if there is a difference?

  2. #2
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    Often the floor is not perfectly flat, so the first thing to do is set the toilet in place with no wax and make sure it does not rock. If it rocks you need to shim it so that it cannot rock.

    Every toilet is a little different on the bottom, you probably do not need thicker ring if it is flush with the floor.

    Attach the bolts to the flange with a 2nd set of nuts; this will not only hold the bolts in place but also ensure that you set the toilet centered over the flange. Most screw-ups happen when people set the toilet off-center on the wax and then push it over to get the bolts lined up.

    I have always set the wax on the ring first. Gravity works that way.

  3. #3
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    You may be confusing the recommendation for using the waxless flange seal. The included directions for those want you to place the seal in place on a cardboard frame that will collapse when the toilet is set. The plumbers advise the opposite. Put the seal on the toilet horn first, then set it in place. Wax rings though are places on the flange first. I concur with cacher_chick's suggestion on the extra nuts on the flange bolts.

  4. #4
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    All plumbers put the wax at floor level, and then drop the bowl down onto the wax.

    If you follow the box directions, then you can be one of those happy homeowners with self mopping floors. When the wax falls off the bowl, and drops God knows where, you will be kicking yourself for not placing it down on the closet flange where it belongs.

    The box directions look so nice that nobody has bothered to change them since the birth of Jesus. Follow the box directions though, and you will have a devil of a time making sure the seal is where it should be. I remember going back on a "floor installer" job. Nice toilet, poor performance. The wax ring was laying right over the hole, blocking the water flow.

    Remember this. The mighty nation of American plumbers has always placed the wax ring(s) on the floor and dropped the bowl down over it.
    Don't let some skinny armed pencil pusher ruin your floor.

  5. #5

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    I also prefer to place them on the flange. It just makes sense.
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  6. #6
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Just do not sucker in to the wax ring with a funnel or horn. Just what I call a "plain Jane" wax ring.

  7. #7
    DIY Member schipperke's Avatar
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    Thanks for replies, will be setting wax rings on flanges this weekend, one new and a couple musical toilets. (swapping bathrooms)

  8. #8
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    If the flange is warped, like an overheated LP, it will probably break as soon as you try to tighten the bolts, because its "integrity" has been compromised.

  9. #9

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    Or... here's an idea. You could do what a plumber did to my toilet a few years back. He forgot to put one on. Yeah, that works.

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