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Thread: Help Me Replace My Blue Toilet!!!!

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member golddustwoman's Avatar
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    Default Help Me Replace My Blue Toilet!!!!

    Hello all - after 21 years of love the beautiful blue toilet in my photo is to be replaced. It's an American Standard and I'm sure it was not one of the upper level models at the time. But it's served us well and continues to work perfectly. But we're remodeling (yes that awful vinyl floor is being replaced with travertine!) and it's time to say goodbye to Blue and hello to a new toilet. But here's the problem - we have NO IDEA which one to buy!!! So please...share your expert advice with us. We want a choice that will last another 20 years!

    Here are our requirements:
    - color - bone or cream (I am so tired of special order toilet seats!!!)
    - ADA height
    - powerful flush with water covering the entire bowl
    - easy installation - my husband is a talented DIYer, but not a plumber, and wants to install it himself
    - if it were also a thing of beauty that would be awesome too
    - it would be good if it were not over $500, but we're willing to pay for a performer that will last

    Here's what we don't know:
    - what's better 1 or 2 piece? We like the way 1 looks but not sure if there are issues with a one piece that we will not want to deal with
    - what's really the best brand and model for the money
    - do we really need a plumber to install it and we should forget the DIY thought?
    - I'm sure there are many things we don't know that I'm not even thinking to ask!

    Thank you for your advice - we are looking to purchase before the end of the week and our decision will be made from advice we get in this forum!

    Much love and thanks to you all ~ GoldDustWoman

  2. #2
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Most of the regulars on this forum prefer the Toto line of toilets. They can be reviewed elsewhere on this forum. One piece have their advantages. Most models are easily installed DIY. Since you purchased your AS, times have changed. The famous name manufactures have sold out and do not have the high quality their name was build on. Toto is the largest manufacturer of toilets in the world with many models to chose from. You might be well advised to peruse the threads on this section of the forum and get some ideas.

  3. #3
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    You won't find a bowl that is new that has as much water as the old one.
    In 1992, they went to a 1.6 gallon bowl.

    Something like the Toto Drake II, CST454CEFG-03 in the Bone/Almond would work.
    Tall bowl
    Sanagloss
    Good rinse for a new Watersense product.


  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member golddustwoman's Avatar
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    Thank you both so much for your responses. I've been researching the Toto Drake - but it's funny because I've never heard of it before? Is Toto a secret that only professionals know about?

    What do you think about DIY installation - especially knowing we're dealing with an original installation in 1989? What are the most common problems my husband might run into?

    Thank you again!!!

  5. #5
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Toilets still install the same way except a few Toto models that use a special adapter for non standard rough-ins. There should be no problems assuming the flange is still in good condition (no reason to think that is will not be OK) You do need to know the rough-in size although there is always some latitude in that distance. 12" measured from the finished wall to the flange bolts is the "standard", but different distances can be dealt with once the measurement is determined. Let's deal with that after you have measured, and we know what you are working with.

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    In the Trades Jerome2877's Avatar
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    This travertine is tile correct? The most commen thing people do is to lay the tile first then they realize the toilets flange is too low. There are ways to deal with this but the best idea is to have a plumber install a new flange at the right height before the tile is in. Once this is done it should be easy to install the new toilet.

  7. #7
    Master Plumber Redwood's Avatar
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    Excellent advice Jerome!

    Get the plumber involved before the new floor!

  8. #8
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Actually, to make tile installation easier, you may want the flange installed after the tile is in. Just ensure you've made allowances for proper clearance. It's also useful if you have the flange in hand so you can notch the tile so it doesn't need to be drilled through after installation. Can be done, but notches are quicker and easier - if they're in the right place!

    Proper place for a flange is on TOP of the FINISHED floor (no gaps underneath it), and anchored well through the floor.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  9. #9
    DIY Junior Member golddustwoman's Avatar
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    You guys are so awesome - I can't even imagine doing this without you! Thanks for the tile/flange issue warning!

    So I've been researching and looking at toilets and here's where I am now. The Toto Drake sounds awesome, but I can't find anyone in my area who has one. So that means I'll be ordering it blind and hoping I like the way it looks when it gets here. I'm not feeling super comfortable with that, although performance is a priority over looks for us.

    So I'm still considering Kohler - and feel free to talk me out of this - the Cimarron two-piece with class 6 flush technology. So if I choose the Kohler am I crazy to have Lowe's order it for me? Does Kohler fill their Lowe's orders with seconds? And if I can't get it safely from Lowe's, is their on line retailer you recommend?

    I have learned more about toilets in the last week than I ever cared to. I hate remodeling. You all are making it so much better. Thanks again!!!

  10. #10
    Nuclear Engineer nukeman's Avatar
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    Go here and put in your zip:

    http://www.totousa.com/Default.aspx?tabid=185

    I imagine you should have plenty of choices in Omaha. Some places might not stock what you are looking for, but can order it for you.

  11. #11
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Probably a totally different issue, but I had a big box store order a Kohler shower door for me...Kohler said two weeks. Well, I should have given up after the couple of months, but eventually they did send one after repeated calls and repeated promises it would be shipped out right away. I was there at the customer service listening while they made calls to find out status about once a week after their original promised date had passed.

    If you look at the trapway (there have been some pictures posted here, and you should be able to find them on-line elsewhere), notice the sharp bends the trapway takes in the Kohler...the last output is nearly a short 90-degree with almost no radius. A good place for clogs. The Drake's, on the other hand, has nice rounded pathways the whole way through.

    Drains like nice smooth sweeping bends, not sharp ones.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  12. #12
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    quote; with water covering the entire bowl

    That may be the one requirement which will be difficult to find, because with the low flush requirements there is NOT enough water to "cover the entire bowl". Kohler is the one toilet I try to stay away from because they have a tendency to design "labyrinth" waterways with abrupt turns. I have installed so few Totos over the years that I cannot attest to their superiority. The one I prefer is made in Turkey, and has a "direct" inverted "U" water way which is almost impossible to plugup.

  13. #13
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    Like hj mentions, the Kohler has a poor trapway design.
    I had one for a while over at my mothers home, and my brother plugged it weekly.
    I also had a Toto there for a while and he didn't plug it.

    The Cimarron trapway is not a good design
    And the rinse is sparse.
    Good luck on that.
    And as for defects, in the last two weeks, my nephew has pulled two Cimarron bowls out that were leaking, no warranty of either, they were too old. What, maybe two years?
    We installed a new one in Seattle two years back and it had a visible leak on the front of the bowl that dripped water onto the floor. At least we saw that leak right away. That was a plumbing supply toilet, not a big box.

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