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Thread: Toilet Flange too High

  1. #1
    DIY Junior Member masrik's Avatar
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    Nov 2013
    London Ontario

    Default Toilet Flange too High

    So when i installed my floor in my basement bathroom, the flange sat flush with the tile.
    The toilet now rocks when i try and install it so i know the flange is too high.
    The issue i have is that i have a 4" pipe and i installed a Closet Floor Flange 3 Inch Inside Fit.
    If i cut the existing flange with a cable cut and break the tile around it. The pipe inside is still 3". How would i fix this ?
    Do i have to chip away at the 3" pipe ? Is there any other way ?

    See Pictures ... Thanks in advance.

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  2. #2
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    Aug 2004
    Bothell, Washington
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    This one by Sioux Chief sits closer to the floor.

    You can either chip it out, or drill it out.

  3. #3
    Test, Don't Guess! cacher_chick's Avatar
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    Jan 2008
    Land of Cheese


    I would screw the flange down tight to the floor and see if the toilet clears then.
    From your description, you could still cut the flange off and install an outside fit replacement. If you do this, get a flange with a stainless steel ring as they are not so thick, and are less likely to break in the future.

  4. #4
    DIY Senior Member wjcandee's Avatar
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    Apr 2012
    New York, NY


    I'm not entirely sure that your premise is correct. Put the toilet on the floor next to the flange and see how stable it is and whether there is a gap underneath it. Then compare when you dry fit it by dropping it on the flange. A toilet may very well rock when it's just on the floor.

    The flange, of course, is SUPPOSED to be installed on top of the finished floor. Accordingly, it doesn't stand to reason that instantly the toilet will be sitting on top of the flange. There is usually a good amount of space underneath. If your premise that the thing is sitting on the flange is correct, then the other advice you received on here is excellent.

  5. #5
    DIY Junior Member masrik's Avatar
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    Nov 2013
    London Ontario


    Thanks for all the advice guys.
    The toilet sitting on the floor next to the flange sits flush and doesnt rock.
    So i am guessing that although i installed the flange correctly above and flush with the tile floor, The flange is probably too thick.
    I guess i will have to cable cut the existing flange and drill out the inner pipe .. or get one that sits on the outside ...
    This will leave me with a 3" opening so i may actually do both.

    Aside form the obvious ... 4" drill bit, Is there a specific type of hole saw i should buy ?

    Thanks !

  6. #6
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer jadnashua's Avatar
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    Sep 2004
    New England


    It does look like that flange is slightly above the floor...it needs to be intimate with the floor all the way around it.

    To remove a piece of plastic pipe from a hub in a fitting, to be successful, you really want to use the right tool. Someone posted the pictures of a couple of those designed specifically for this. The bottom one looks like a RamBit, and is probably the less expensive version. It is self-guiding so it doesn't eat into the fitting while drilling out the pipe. If you're lucky, you might be able to rent one rather than buy one.
    Jim DeBruycker
    Important note - I'm not a pro
    Retired Defense Industry Engineer; Schluter 2.5-day Workshop Completed 2013, 2014

  7. #7
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Aug 2004
    Cave Creek, Arizona


    One of my inviolate rules is to NEVER use an all plastic flange. One reason being that they ARE very thick, and the second being that they eventurally warp and break. Remove it somehow, then use an "outside" flange with a metal ring.
    Licensed residential and commercial plumber

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