Easy 7 Step Guide to Replace a Toilet Wax Ring and Prevent Leaks

Discovering water pooling around the base of your toilet can be a frustrating experience. Chances are, the wax ring sealing the connection between the toilet and the floor flange has worn out and needs replacing.

While the idea of tackling a toilet repair might sound daunting, replacing a toilet wax ring is a manageable DIY task that can prevent further leaks and water damage.

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process to replace a toilet wax ring to ensure a watertight seal and a leak-free bathroom.

Also Read: 12 Best Kohler Toilets|Update Your Toilet

Tools and Materials Needed:

  • Adjustable wrench
  • Putty knife
  • New wax ring
  • New toilet bolts (if necessary)
  • Towels or rags

Step 1: Turn Off the Water Supply and Empty the Toilet

Guide to Replace a Toilet Wax Ring
  • Locate the water shut-off valve behind or near the toilet and turn it off.
  • Flush the toilet to empty the tank and bowl.

Step 2: Disconnect the Water Supply and Remove the Toilet

  • Use an adjustable wrench to disconnect the water supply line from the bottom of the toilet tank.
  • Unscrew the nuts from the bolts securing the toilet to the floor.
  • Carefully lift the toilet off the flange and set it on its side on a towel or old rags.

Step 3: Remove the Old Wax Ring and Clean the Flange

  • Gently scrape away the old wax ring using a putty knife. Ensure all remnants of the old wax are removed from both the flange and the toilet base.
  • Clean the flange thoroughly to create a smooth and clean surface for the new wax ring.

Step 4: Choose the Correct Size Wax Ring

  • Measure the flange to determine its height above the floor. If the flange is above the floor, consider using an extra-thick wax ring to ensure a proper seal.

Step 5: Install the New Wax Ring

  • Place the new wax ring on the flange, making sure it’s centered over the opening.
  • Carefully lower the toilet back onto the wax ring, ensuring that the toilet bolts align with the holes in the base.
  • Gently press down on the toilet to compress the wax ring and create a secure seal.

Step 6: Reattach the Toilet and Water Supply

  • Insert new toilet bolts into the flange holes if necessary.
  • Place washers and nuts onto the bolts and tighten them to secure the toilet to the floor. Avoid over-tightening, as this could crack the toilet base.
  • Reconnect the water supply line to the toilet tank and turn on the water supply valve.

Step 7: Test for Leaks

  • Flush the toilet and watch carefully for any signs of water leakage around the base of the toilet.
  • If you notice any leaks, tighten the toilet bolts slightly or adjust the wax ring to create a better seal.

Also Read: How to Fix a Leaky Toilet?


How much does it cost to replace a toilet wax ring?

The cost of a wax ring can vary depending on the brand and quality. On average, you can expect to spend between $10 to $20 for a standard wax ring.

Can I reuse the old wax ring?

Reusing an old wax ring is not recommended. The wax can become brittle over time, leading to leaks. It’s best to use a new wax ring for a secure seal.
In conclusion, replacing a toilet wax ring might seem like a challenging task, but with the right tools and guidance, it’s a manageable DIY project that can save you from the hassle of leaks and water damage.
By following these detailed steps, you can ensure a proper seal between your toilet and the floor flange, preventing future leaks and maintaining a dry and comfortable bathroom.
If you’re ever unsure about any step or encounter complications, don’t hesitate to seek advice or professional assistance for a successful repair. Your efforts will pay off with a leak-free and well-functioning toilet.