When it’s time to take your place on the throne, you expect it to be a solid seat to do your business. Any wobbling or movement can upset your immediate task, but the bigger problem is why it’s happening.
Several possible problems could be causing the rocking. These include:
- Mounting bolt nuts are too loose
- The wax ring is too thick
- The toilet flange is broken
- Toilet flange is too high
- Sub-floor is spongy from water damage
The repair may involve one or more of these problems, so go through each until the rocking is fixed. If it seems too daunting, contact a qualified plumber to assist you. They have the tools and know-how to get your toilet repaired quickly. Then all that’s left to do is enjoy the benefits of a solid throne in your home castle.
A rocking toilet needs to be repaired as soon as possible because the issue will likely worsen over time. Is there anything you can do about it? Fortunately, there are solutions. Let’s learn what you can to repair the rocking toilet in your home:
Your toilet has two bolts that go through the sides at the base of the bowl and connect to the toilet flange. After a toilet is mounted on top, nuts are tightened onto the bolts to secure the toilet. Over time, these nuts can work their way loose and cause the toilet to move around when you sit down.
Get down there and take off the caps over the nuts to check if they are loose. If you can move them with your fingers, that is likely the problem. Even if they seem tight, use an open wrench or socket wrench to tighten them up, making sure not to go too far as you could crack the toilet itself. Once it is snug, check to see if the toilet is secure. If not, move on to the next step.
The flange is where your wax ring sits between the toilet base and the toilet. This makes a seal so no waste water can escape, but it also acts as a barrier, so sewer gas doesn’t escape. If the ring is too big, the toilet can float on it without being tight to the flange. This can then cause the toilet to rock and contribute to the breakdown of the wax ring. You may or may not notice wastewater or bad odours around the toilet base, but before this happens, you need to replace the ring.
Replacing it is fairly simple. Shut off your water supply and flush until most of the water is gone, and use a wet/dry vacuum to remove the rest. Then, you just need to unbolt the toilet from the flange and take it off. Remove the old wax ring and install a new one, making sure it is the right size for the toilet and flange. Finally, mount the toilet back on the flange and tighten it down.
Sometimes during installation, the toilet flange is put on too high. This causes the toilet to be raised in the middle and can rock as it teeters on top. To fix this, you can buy wooden or plastic shims to steady the toilet and then fill the gap with tile grout. Once the grout is dry, you can remove them and fill those voids with more grout.
A broken flange is a different issue altogether. Over time, the flange may break down and crack, so the mounting bolts won’t tighten up properly. For this issue, you will have to buy a repair plate or ring. The ring is placed on top of the old flange and lined up so you can screw it to the subfloor. A plate mounts underneath the old flange and screws tight together. Now you can put in your wax ring and place the toilet back on, securing it with the mounting bolts.
The toilet flange is mounted on the subfloor, and if there is a water leak, it can rot or lose integrity, so no other solutions work. The only thing you can do is replace the damaged floor.
First, you need to remove the toilet and toilet flange before cutting away all the rotten subfloor. A reciprocating saw and a skill saw will do the job. If the floor joists are rotted, you need to repair, twin or replace them.
Construct your new section of subfloor and then install the toilet like a new build. This involves mounting the toilet flange, putting in a new wax ring and installing the toilet. Once you are done, you should have a solid base for your toilet to sit on.