DIY Toilet Installation

Installing a new toilet is a quick and easy project that requires minimal skill, tools, and only takes a few hours to complete the project.  The two major steps involved with installing a toilet are removing the old toilet and installing the new unit.  The tools you will need for this project include a wrench, caulking, and depending on the condition of the existing bolts you may also require a saw.

Removing the Old Toilet
The first step to removing your old toilet is to ensure that you have turned off the water access to the unit. The water shutoff valve is located at the back base of the toilet and is usually a silver cable with a knob attached to it.  To ensure the water has been shutoff properly you should flush the toilet , the water in the tank and the bowl should remain empty.  Next you are going to the water supply cord from the toilet by unscrewing it from the base of the toilet.    Now you will need to unscrew the bottom of the base from the floor using a wrench, if the bolts have rusted over due to water exposure and you are unable to move the bolts you may need to cut the bolts off using a saw. 
Now that you have removed the bolts from the old toilet you will notice that it is still firmly attached to the floor in the bathroom.  This is due to the wax seal at the bottom of the toilet and you will need to wiggle the toilet until the seal finally breaks.   Before you move on to attaching the new toilet you should clean the surface area where it will attach to ensure a secure and sturdy connection. 

Installing the New Toilet
Installing your new toilet follows the same basic instructions as removing the old unit with a few exceptions.  When you are setting the new unit down onto the wax seal you may need to let the wax sit in the sun for a few hours first.  It is very difficult to get a proper seal when the wax is at a cold temperature.  You should also use a level to ensure that your new unit is level with the floor and squared to the wall. 

Once you have ensured that everything is in order use your wrench and tighten the bolts tightly into the flooring.  If your new toilet comes with cap covers for your bolts on the base you should attach these as they will help prevent water exposure on the bolts and will make the removal of the unit much easier in the future.  To attach the caps simply pour caulking or plumbing putty into the cap and firmly attach them over the new bolts.  Once you have tightened the bolts into place there may be a slight gap created which will need to be filled with caulking to prevent any leakages.  Reestablish your water connection by attaching the water supply to the base of the new unit and reopen the valve to allow water access to the new toilet.

WARNING: Make sure that you follow all safety instructions on the packaging of the materials that you are using to complete this project.  Ensure that all the pipes are closed or turned off so that you do not have waste products come back up through the hole.  Follow all safety precautions to ensure that there are no illnesses or injuries with this project.