Even though you do not see it, the toilet wax ring can be one of the most important parts of a toilet.
This wax ring is located at the base of the toilet, forming a tightened seal between the drain pipe and the flange. When the seal around a toilet at its base fails, water begins leaking out and can cause damage to anything around if not repaired in time.
This small, cheap piece might not seem important at a first glance, but should always be in good condition to avoid any possible damage to your floor.
How much does it cost to replace a toilet wax ring?
The price of a toilet wax ring is not that expensive, depending on the brand, one piece can be bought for less than $17. What would cost you the most is the work to replace this piece if you are thinking to hire a professional to do this job. The plumber will have to disassemble the whole toilet in order to have access to the base of it, where the wax ring is located. To perform this job, he would charge you anywhere between $160 and $220, depending on the contractor and the place where you are living.
Because it is a simple job, the majority of the plumbers will charge a flat rate. If you know for sure that the problem with the toilet leaks is caused by the wax ring, it is recommended to search for three price offers at least. You can find these kinds of pieces through an online search.
Toilet wax ring details
The purpose of installing the toilet wax ring between the flange and the drain is pretty clear. The accessory, usually made of rubber or silicone, provides a seal between the two main parts of the plumbing.
The shape of this mounting accessory can be:
- some other shape (usually on imported devices).
Installing the toilet wax ring
Installing the toilet wax ring is an easy job, but the most challenging part is removing the whole toilet as some of it may weigh more than 100 pounds. The entire process would take around 45 to 60 minutes.
Firstly, you must shut off the water to the toilet, then remove any water left inside the bowl using a vacuum and a plunger.
The next step involves removing the supply line by using an adjustable wrench. You will need a container that should be close to you for the water drained from this hose.
After loosing the bolts with the help of a wrench, the toilet will be lifted and put aside on a pile of rags.
Once the toilet is put away from its base, the wax ring can be seen, so the plumber can remove it from the flange using a putty knife. As he or she can remove the wax ring, the debris and residues accumulated around the flange will also be removed.
At this point, when the wax ring is removed, the plumber can inspect the flange to make sure that it is working in proper conditions. If there is a problem with this piece, they will recommend replacing it. The cost to replace the flange would be around $520.
After this check, the plumber will install the new wax ring on the face of the flange or at the base of the drain, depending on the toilet type.
Once the toilet wax ring is replaced, the whole toilet will be reinstalled and thoroughly checked so there will be no moving or wiggling.
Finally, the bolts are tightened at the toilet base and the water source reconnected in order to fill the toilet water tank again.
Important things to consider
The lifespan of a high-quality toilet wax ring is up to 25 years or equal to the life of the entire toilet as this piece would not get damaged very easily. Anyway, to avoid the water toilet leaks due to improper wax ring installation it must be tightly fixed with the bolts holding the toilet to the floor base. The seal can be compromised by loose bolts, resulting in damage to the toilet wax ring.
If are going to replace the toilet wax ring yourself, firstly make sure you purchase the right size for the flange, as these are not all equal. Also, in some setups, a flange extender may be required.
Usually, the wax rings come in a standard size, but some of them are double in thickness. This type is used if the toilet flange under the toilet is below the floor level.