We didn’t initially plan on installing a toilet.  We planned to lay down peel and stick tile and install our new bathroom furniture from IKEA.  We’ll after our toilet started leaking because the previous owner never replaced the bolts on the toilet tank, we didn’t have much of a choice.  Besides that I have a chubby hubby and sitting on our previous toilet was like using the bathroom at the Barbie playhouse for him.  So, here we are.

It’s our first DIY Date Night and we are installing a toilet.  Hooray. Hooray.  Installing a toilet is a job I’d rather not do, but I was super happy to spend soem time with hubby and get a new toilet.  It looks awesome in our budding bathroom, but you’ll have to wait until the end to see it.  In the meantime if you’re online searching for a how-to-guide to installing a toilet, you’re in the right place.  

Two glasses of wine for me and a Corona for him and we’re on our way.  

♦  Small Wrench

♦ Vice Grip

♦ A New Toilet

♦ 5 in 1 Tool

♦ Properly Fitted Tank Hose

♦ Tarp

♦ Bleach or Dishwashing Liquid

Step 1: Get Organized

The first step to install your new toilet is to turn off the water supply to your bathroom.  Second, lay down a plastic tarp (or some old sheets) over your bathroom floor.  That old wax ring can get your bathroom messy if you step in it.  Bring all of your tools into the bathroom and organize them.

Step 2 – Remove the Old Toilet

For this step, you’ll need your vice grips and/or your small wrench.  Using either tool unscrew the bolts from the underside of the toilet tank.  I’d advise putting all of your bolts in a small cup or on your work apron.  You’ll do the same thing the bottom of the toilet.  Remove the bolt caps and unscrew the bolts to loosen the toilet bowl.  From there you should be able to remove the old toilet in two pieces: the tank and the bowl.  Then, kwaheri! (Goodbye in Swahili)


Step 3 – Clean and Replace the Wax Ring


This part is going to look pretty gross, but it’s not super gross.  Once you remove the old toilet, you’re going to see the old wax ring.  It look like a glob of poo and you’ve got to remove it.  With your gloves on, use your 5-in-1 tool to scrap the old wax ring away from the floor flange.  I let hubby do that part.  Once he was done, I cleaned the area with 1 part water, 1 part bleach.  It should look pretty spic and span. Then put the new bolts that should have come with your wax ring int the floor flange.  Secure them with the washers that should have accompanied the bolts.  Next, get the toilet bowl of your new toilet and turn it upside down.  Place the wax ring around the

Step 4 – Place the New Toilet Bowl over the Floor Flange

Hubby and I had to work together to do this.  Next, hubby lifted the toilet bowl and I helped him align the opening with the floor flange and bolts.  Once he sat the bowl down, he had to twist it to make sure it spread the wax and made a good seal.  You might even want to sit on the seat to firmly compress the wax.  Next, place the washers and nuts on the bolts on each side of the toilet bowl and secure them.  Then, cover the bolts with your bolt caps.



Step 5 – Finishing Touches

Finally using the same process that you used to remove the old toilet, place the new toilet tank on top of the bowl and secure it using the nuts and bolts.  Use your new hose to connect your tank to the water supply valve.  Turn your water back on and do a practice flush.  As long as you’ve go no leaks, you’re done.  Here’s our new toilet.  I love it!

We are nowhere near done.  Over the next two months we will be redesigning our upstairs bathroom.  Catch us next Friday. On our next DIY Date Night we’ll be putting down our peel n’ stick to re-tile the bathroom floor and putting in our new bathroom vanity from IKEA.  See ya next Friday!



DIY Date Night

Muffy MendozaAuthor posts

Muffy Mendoza is an author, speaker and founder of Pittsburgh Brown Mamas, a support group for nearly 4,000 African-American moms in the Pittsburgh region. To further fill the void Muffy has created a line of educational products focused on helping Black moms be the best moms, too. Her first book, The Brown Mama Mindset: A Blueprint for Black Moms on Life, Love & Home, was featured at the 2018 Essence Festival and is currently sold in various cities across the U.S. Muffy champions the beauty of Black motherhood everywhere she goes, even on the TEDx stage. Find out more about Muffy on muffymendoza.com.


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