How to Replace a Toilet: A Comprehensive Guide

Replacing a toilet can be a complex and challenging task, but it is also an opportunity to update and improve the functionality of your bathroom. With the right tools and a little bit of know-how, anyone can replace a toilet and achieve a professional-looking result.

In this article, we’ll take you step by step through the process of removing and installing a new toilet, so you can get the job done with confidence.

Tools and Supplies You’ll Need

Before you get started, make sure you have all the necessary tools and supplies on hand. You’ll need the following items:

  • New toilet
  • Adjustable wrench
  • Bucket
  • Large sponge
  • Putty knife
  • Screwdrivers (Phillips and flathead)
  • Teflon tape
  • Replacement wax ring

Step 1: Turn Off the Water Supply

The first step in replacing a toilet is to turn off the water supply. Locate the shut-off valve behind the toilet and turn it clockwise until it’s fully closed. Flush the toilet to release any remaining water and use a large sponge and bucket to soak up any remaining water in the tank.

Step 2: Remove the Old Toilet

Now that the water supply is shut off, it’s time to remove the old toilet. Use an adjustable wrench to remove the two nuts that secure the toilet to the floor. Once the nuts are removed, gently rock the toilet back and forth until it comes loose from the wax ring.

Step 3: Clean the Flange

With the old toilet removed, clean any remaining wax with a putty knife. Inspect the flange for any damage. If the flange is damaged, it must be repaired or replaced before you can proceed.

Step 4: Install the New Wax Ring

Next, set your new wax ring onto the flange, making sure it’s centered over the flange.

Step 5: Install the New Toilet

Put the new closet bolts in place. Place the new toilet onto the wax ring making sure the closet bolts come through the holes on the base of the toilet. Press down firmly on the toilet to compress the wax ring and create a tight seal. Finger tighten the nuts onto the closet bolts and use the adjustable wrench to tighten them.

Step 6: Connect the Water Supply

Finally, connect the water supply to the new toilet. Apply a few wraps of Teflon tape to the threads of the water supply, then connect the supply to the bottom of the tank. Use the adjustable wrench to tighten the connection.

Step 7: Test for Leaks

Turn the water supply back on and let the tank fill up. Check for any leaks around the base of the toilet. If there are no leaks, you’re done! If you do notice a leak, tighten the nuts a little more and recheck.


Replacing a toilet is a job that can be accomplished by anyone with a little bit of know-how and the right tools. By following these steps, you’ll be able to remove and install a new toilet with confidence, giving your bathroom an updated and improved look.

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