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Wax Cap or Poo?

taylorgeo
taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
DIYer here.

Trying to figure out what's going on at the bottom of the toilet. Been seeing this crud more frequently and in greater amounts.

Thanks in advanced.

Comments

  • Zman
    Zman Member Posts: 7,433
    Probably both! It is time to pull the toilet and see what is going on.
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein
    mattmia2Mad Dog_2
  • EBEBRATT-Ed
    EBEBRATT-Ed Member Posts: 13,102
    Agree with @Zman
    Mad Dog_2
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 20,425
    Or mold. And I agree with the above, too!
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    Mad Dog_2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    Could be a cracked bowl. Most likely a bowl wax leak. Get it soon as it will start rotting the floor around the closet flange.

    Aggressive plunging lately??
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Mad Dog_2
  • taylorgeo
    taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
    hot_rod said:

    Could be a cracked bowl. Most likely a bowl wax leak. Get it soon as it will start rotting the floor around the closet flange.

    Aggressive plunging lately??

    No aggressive plunging, but we're constantly inserting and removing a raised toilet seat for an elderly parent – or maybe because the toilet is over 20 years old, and we have a very large family member who loves to read on the toilet, lol.

    Either way, looks like it's time to swap this one out. Thanks, all!
    Mad Dog_2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    taylorgeo said:

    hot_rod said:

    Could be a cracked bowl. Most likely a bowl wax leak. Get it soon as it will start rotting the floor around the closet flange.

    Aggressive plunging lately??

    No aggressive plunging, but we're constantly inserting and removing a raised toilet seat for an elderly parent – or maybe because the toilet is over 20 years old, and we have a very large family member who loves to read on the toilet, lol.

    Either way, looks like it's time to swap this one out. Thanks, all!
    Check out the 19” high line toilets. Fun for all ages😂
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    ZmanMad Dog_2
  • taylorgeo
    taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
    Would the 19-inch be too tall for a 5’ 3” elderly person?
    Mad Dog_2
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 20,425
    taylorgeo said:

    Would the 19-inch be too tall for a 5’ 3” elderly person?

    No. On the contrary -- much less bending of the knees and back.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    Mad Dog_2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    A grab rail is nice for elderly folk also.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Mad Dog_2reggi
  • Long Beach Ed
    Long Beach Ed Member Posts: 1,050
    When you reset the bowl, set it in plaster like they do in NYC. It will keep it from rocking which will help preserve the wax ring.
    Mad Dog_2pecmsg
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 3,885
    edited January 26
    Yup...thats poo 💩 poo juice leeching out on each flush because the wax ring is done!
    Pull bowl, carefully turn on side. Scrape off all old plaster & wax, scrape wax off flange. New Brass Johnny Bolts, DEEP seal wax rings (that's all I use) on the flange.   a whole bucket of plaster (the ones about the size of a gallon of milk).  If you have the grout from original tile job, you can mix w Plaster.   Make consistency of pudding.  Have a bucket of clean water and large sponge 🧽 right next to you.  Pack plaster all around the outside of wax ring and follow rim of bowl.  Sqoush down a little twist put both knees and all your weight in toilet seat. Make up Johnny bolt nuts and washes as tight as u can with fingers. Work fast and clean all the excess plaster and toss it.  Keep rinsing sponge until perfect.  Thats how I do a bowl.  Mad Dog 🐕 
    reggiCLamb
  • psb75
    psb75 Member Posts: 636
    I highly recommend Sioux Chief 3 1/2" nylon closet bolts--not brass. That is all I ever use now on toilet installs. I'm SO much more comfortable tightening nylon nuts on a nylon bolts with toilet porcelain in the middle! I also highly recommend using the soft, white, rubber wedges under the toilet base to eliminate ANY movement. The wedges and extra bolt length trim very easily with non-electric tools.
    Mad Dog_2
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 392
         Here's an article on " trouble free toilets " that I've found useful......
  • Kickstand55
    Kickstand55 Member Posts: 79
    Tile floors are uneven causing the toilet to rock at times, especially if someone is heavy, bumps into it or moves about while in place.
    My fix has been to be sure the flange is solidly mounted to the floor with stainless steel screws of sufficient length to penetrate the entire floor. Instead of using the usual closet bolts, I prefer 5/16" x 3" closet screws, wood thread at one end and 5/16" NC thread on the other. Then I apply a copious amount of grout below the toilet as I set in place with the proper thickness wax ring. Never use silicone on a tile floor as it is a bear to remove later and looks like a hack job. After securing the base to the flange, clean up the grout and let the customer know not to use the toilet for a day. Never once have I had a call back.
    Mad Dog_2flat_twin
  • taylorgeo
    taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
    Thanks, all! Great information here!

    Anyone know a good plumber in the NYC/Long Island area?
    Mad Dog_2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    I like to flush a few times before sealing to the floor, just to be sure.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Mad Dog_2
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,876
    edited January 26
    hot_rod said:

    I like to flush a few times before sealing to the floor, just to be sure.

    If it's installed correctly even without a wax ring you shouldn't see anything under those conditions.
    So what you really want to do is give the thing a good clog so it backs up into the toilet and puts some pressure against the wax seal.

    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,876
    edited January 26
    So,
    We've got one guy in this thread that uses nylon closet bolts so keep any risk of cracking the toilet minimal. Then we have another guy who wants a flange screwed down using huge screws and 5/16 closet bolts which also screw into the wood, so the complete opposite of the first guy.

    Then we have the two NYC guys saying to pour a plaster base, the only place in the country which has ever done such a thing to my knowledge.

    Interesting thread. I like it.


    Who's going to start the horn vs no horn argument? :D
    Or, wax ring on the flange, or on the bowl first?
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    Mad Dog_2
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    ChrisJ said:

    hot_rod said:

    I like to flush a few times before sealing to the floor, just to be sure.

    If it's installed correctly even without a wax ring you shouldn't see anything under those conditions.
    So what you really want to do is give the thing a good clog so it backs up into the toilet and puts some pressure against the wax seal.

    Based on how many hundreds of toilets that you have installed? :)

    Improperly installed flanges, below the floor surface is a sure bowl wax leak waiting for the first flush. Stacking two wax rings can also get you a leak on first flush. I've been there.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    MikeL_2Mad Dog_2
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,876
    edited January 26
    hot_rod said:

    ChrisJ said:

    hot_rod said:

    I like to flush a few times before sealing to the floor, just to be sure.

    If it's installed correctly even without a wax ring you shouldn't see anything under those conditions.
    So what you really want to do is give the thing a good clog so it backs up into the toilet and puts some pressure against the wax seal.

    Based on how many hundreds of toilets that you have installed? :)

    Improperly installed flanges, below the floor surface is a sure bowl wax leak waiting for the first flush. Stacking two wax rings can also get you a leak on first flush. I've been there.
    You've installed hundreds of toilets?
    I could be wrong, maybe even done perfectly they would still leak....

    I'm just surprised you've installed a lot of toilets.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    Mad Dog_2
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 3,885
    edited January 27
    You're barking up the wrong tree, Dawg!.  Hot Rod's plumbing and heating experience
    Is EPIC and lengthy.  The guy's done and seen just about all one could come across.  I'm sure its more than hundreds, he's being modest.  Over a few year period I installed well over a thousand on a few Manhattan High rise new construction jobs.   When you gotta produce 6-8 per day, you better get good installation systems in place.  And they better not rock or leak!  In some circles, its popular and common to knock Union labor, but we have extremely high standards of excellence (NYC Plumbers Local #1 In the House!!!! (RIP Local #2)to achieve just because we make a VG wage and bennies.  You get one too many leakers, you're on the next layoff list.   Mad 🐕 Dog
    Paul PolletsCLamb
  • psb75
    psb75 Member Posts: 636
    Here's something about plaster or grout placed under a toilet installation: have you ever come in and had to RESET a new toilet on a floor with old plaster or grout in place? Notsomuch fun.
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 3,885
    Yup but it comes off.  Concrete is the worst. MD
  • psb75
    psb75 Member Posts: 636
    Caulking comes off too. But it has "no place" around a toilet base. My maxim: caulking is ONLY good for HIDING leaks around a toilet. Wouldn't you rather KNOW if your toilet was leaking--like the toilet at the "head" of this discussion thread?
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,876
    edited January 27
    psb75 said:

    Caulking comes off too. But it has "no place" around a toilet base. My maxim: caulking is ONLY good for HIDING leaks around a toilet. Wouldn't you rather KNOW if your toilet was leaking--like the toilet at the "head" of this discussion thread?

    It's also good for keeping urine etc out from under it.
    Especially during an overflow condition.

    It's also required by code in most areas.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
    MikeL_2
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,876
    Mad Dog_2 said:

    You're barking up the wrong tree, Dawg!.  Hot Rod's plumbing and heating experience
    Is EPIC and lengthy.  The guy's done and seen just about all one could come across.  I'm sure its more than hundreds, he's being modest.  Over a few year period I installed well over a thousand on a few Manhattan High rise new construction jobs.   When you gotta produce 6-8 per day, you better get good installation systems in place.  And they better not rock or leak!  In some circles, its popular and common to knock Union labor, but we have extremely high standards of excellence (NYC Plumbers Local #1 In the House!!!! (RIP Local #2)to achieve just because we make a VG wage and bennies.  You get one too many leakers, you're on the next layoff list.   Mad 🐕 Dog

    I see that.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment
  • MikeL_2
    MikeL_2 Member Posts: 392
    Both the IRC & IPC require all fixtures to be sealed water tight where they come in contact with walls & floors.
       A toilet will sit leak free for decades when set on a properly prepared & sturdy bathroom floor & correctly installed flange.
       Most bowl waxes never come in contact with water until there is a back up in the piping connected to the flange.
       A plumbers most important duties include providing & maintaining sanitation. An unsealed toilet bowl will allow nasty germs to accumulate & multiply.....
       
        
        
    CLamb
  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    @taylorgeo prepare yourself emotionally, spiritually and physically when you lift that toilet :)
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    CLambErin Holohan HaskellgmcinnesSuperTech
  • KC_Jones
    KC_Jones Member Posts: 5,354
    hot_rod said:

    @taylorgeo prepare yourself emotionally, spiritually and physically when you lift that toilet :)

    Recent bathroom gut I did, the original drains running in the floor were pitched incorrectly. The toilet that was supposed to be upwind of the other, was downwind by the pitch. That toilet had been disconnected for a while and the closet flange plugged, when I got to the point of disconnecting the closet flange and cutting it out, it was pretty full of "stuff". My kids are like "How are you doing that", the answer, because I have to. I was taking serious stock of my life choices in those moments.

    I've cleaned grease traps in a restaurant, pits at a car wash, so this honestly wasn't that bad, but the rest of the family was gagging. It was pretty ripe and moist. I'm sure the trash men appreciated that gem on Monday morning. lol

    My wife was impressed I put on rubber gloves for a change.
    2014 Weil Mclain EG-40
    EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Boiler Control
    Boiler pictures updated 2/21/15
    hot_rodPC7060
  • taylorgeo
    taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
    Wax Ring or...


  • hot_rod
    hot_rod Member Posts: 18,195
    I would first remove the toilet and see how and where the flange is mounted. If the flange is not on top of the finished floor, you either need a spacer ring, or a deep type bowl wax.

    Looks like some sort of sponge rubber gasket? I’ve also seen wax rings with a thin rubber cover, less mess.

    Lock the closet bolts into the flange with brass nuts and washers to keep them from tipping, and make removal easy for the next guy.
    Bob "hot rod" Rohr
    trainer for Caleffi NA
    Living the hydronic dream
    Mad Dog_2
  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 3,885
    I think every plumber has to crack one toilet tightening it up and drop one toilet tank cover...its an expensive right of passage .  Ha ha.  Mad 🐕 Dog. 
  • taylorgeo
    taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
    Really worried about doing this toilet swap myself. Seems like so many things can be/or go wrong. Maybe the pipe underneath is messed up, or the closet flange could be busted. Then there's the new toilet – what if it leaks after I install it? I'd hate to wait a day or two for plumber to come rescue me, while my two elderly parents are using a commode!

    And what about the sewer gasses coming in for a day or two while waiting for a plumber?

    Decisions, decisions...
  • reggi
    reggi Member Posts: 315
    You could always check the availability of rooms at the local Hotels before you start.. Did you figure out how long this repair is going to take you and . .. well if it's the only toilet 🚽 there..  
    JK.. you'll do fine  
    One way to get familiar something you know nothing about is to ask a really smart person a really stupid question
  • taylorgeo
    taylorgeo Member Posts: 47
    Spoke to a plumber today and he said if the flange is bad and there's a lead pipe underneath, he will need to open up the ceiling under the bathroom floor.

    What???
  • ChrisJ
    ChrisJ Member Posts: 13,876
    taylorgeo said:

    Spoke to a plumber today and he said if the flange is bad and there's a lead pipe underneath, he will need to open up the ceiling under the bathroom floor.

    What???

    I mean,
    You can either open the ceiling under it, or open that tile floor.
    One way or another he needs to get to the pipe to fix it.

    I'm betting the ceiling is easier to repair.
    Single pipe quasi-vapor system. Typical operating pressure 0.14 - 0.43 oz. EcoSteam ES-20 Advanced Control for Residential Steam boilers. Rectorseal Steamaster water treatment