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Thread: Rocky Top - Toilet Floor Spacers

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member AQBill's Avatar
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    Default Rocky Top - Toilet Floor Spacers

    Dear Friends, I'll bet this isn't an uncommon problem. When the house I live in was built, the toilet flanges were set into the floor assuming that 1/2 inch tiles were to be used to finish the bathroom floors. However, the owners - probably running low on money - put in 1/8 inch composite tiles instead. The end result is that the flanges are 3/8 inch too high. Does anyone make some kind of spacer/pedestal that raise the floor enough so the toilet will sit flush?

    Any thoughts will be welcomed. I've replaced two of four toilets and have done the best I can with shims...but the gap between the floor and the toilet is noticeable.

    Many thanks

  2. #2
    Plumbing Contractor for 49 years johnjh2o1's Avatar
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    Why not just lower the flange? What type pipe are you dealing with?

    John

  3. #3
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    If the toilet is sitting on the flange, it WILL leak. Lower the flange, or buy one of the plastic "toilet floor covers" that go under it to conceal the damage left by the previous toilet.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

  4. #4
    DIY Junior Member AQBill's Avatar
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    The pipe and flange are PVC. I'd like to avoid tearing up the floors however as that's an expensive and time-consuming job. How far above the floor is the flange supposed to project? Flush with the floor or a little bit above? Toilet floor covers just get me to rugs and such. Can you provide a specific recommendation for me hj? Many thanks.

  5. #5
    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Raising the toilet with plastic or tile would work, but has the mark of a hack job. What you should do is hire a plumber to remove and replace the existing PVC with better flanges that will set on top of the finished floor, and screwed through into the subflooring. The flange replacement is a pretty simple job for a plumber, but not so easy for a DIY with no experience, tools, or knowledge of what to do or how to do it. You will be time and money ahead and have a good appearing job if you will get professional help on this project.

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Depending on what you have, it might not be a big deal to lower the flange to where it is supposed to be. As Gary said, they are designed to sit on TOP of the FINSIHED floor, and be anchored through it - there should be NO space beneath the flange and the top of the finished floor - it should be tightly anchored to it. Depending on the design of the flange, they are typically somewhere between 1/4-1/2" thick. Plumbers don't like the all-plastic ones, but prefer those with a SS (not painted steel) metal ring on the plastic when connecting to pvc or abs.

    If the flange is just sitting out there, neither the toilet nor the flange may last long - you'll likely break one or both, and in the meantime, have leaks.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

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