Replace a Toilet in 10 Easy Steps

Has your toilet seen better days? If it’s started to leak or you just want to give your bathroom a new look, it’s time to put on your plumbing hat and get to work! In just a few hours, you can avoid a costly plumber visit and get the job done yourself.

First, make sure you have all the necessary parts and tools you will need to complete the task.


New Toilet
New Flush Valve
New Fill Valve
New Wax Ring



Adjustable Wrench
Channel Locking Pliers
Putty Knife


Additional Hardware:

Penetrating Oil
Hold-Down Bolts
Towel, sponge, and bucket

Now get ready to get your hands wet.

  1. Turn off the water to the toilet. If you forget this step, you’ll be spending the day mopping instead!
  2. Remove the tank lid and refill tube from the overflow pipe. Drain the water from the tank. Drain the water out of the tank by holding down the flush lever.
  3. Disconnect the water supply line and the flapper chain.
  4. Unscrew the bolts attached to the tank. If they are difficult to remove, use penetrating oil to loosen them. Remove tank from the bowl and place on a towel.
  5. Unscrew the bolts attaching the toilet to the floor with an adjustable wrench.
  6. Rock the bowl side to side to release the grip on the floor, lift up until it clears the bolts and place on a towel.
  7. Tip the toilet to the side to get the wax ring off of the bottom of the toilet. Then remove any of the wax that may be stuck to the flange in the floor. Use a putty knife and paper towels to do this. Clean the area around the drain hole. If the bolts look rusty, you should replace them.
  8. Place a new wax ring on the new toilet and carefully position on top of the drain hole. You only get one shot to place it – if you miss, you’ll need to replace the wax ring to ensure a secure seal.
  9. Set toilet back in place and gently rock the bowl until it sits level on the floor. Assemble remaining pieces in the reverse order that you took it apart.
  10. Turn the water back on and test the new toilet for any leaks.


If you need additional advice or suggestions, please visit your local Friedman’s and chat with one of our knowledgeable Xpert Advisors– we will make sure you have all the tools you need to get the job done right!

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Friedman's Home Improvement proudly services all of the North Bay with convenient locations in Santa Rosa, Petaluma, Sonoma, and Ukiah.

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