Home>Discussions>BATHROOMS>What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?
14 posts / 0 new
Last post
JRuby2004
What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

Hi everyone,

Beyond hiring a contractor to retile my bathroom floor, I've been remodeling the bathroom myself. I went to install the toilet the other day, and I'm questioning if the flange is installed correctly. I've attached a couple pictures.

There's some type of purple substance that appears to be sealing the interface between the flange and drain, but for the life of me I can't figure out the orientation of the pipes. If this is in fact a sealant, there are some gaps which would clearly allow drainage to seap through.

Based on these pictures, can anyone tell what the drain/flange schematic looks like? Is this possibly a problem?

Thanks!

Jason

A. Spruce
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

The purple substance is likely PVC primer, used to soften and prep the material for gluing. The glue was probably clear which is why you only see the purple. There should be a bit of a ridge of glue visible around the inside of the flange where it was slid over the pipe. Judging from what I see in the picture, all is fine.

What is not technically correct is that the flange is supposed to be flush with the finished surface of the floor. Sitting on top as it is generally isn't a problem, it kinda depends on the toilet and how deep the base is molded. I personally would refrain from caulking the base of the toilet and keeping an eye on it for a while to make sure there are no leaks.

Cougars1996
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

I too think it is fine. The glossy stuff is the PVC cement, and it looks like they used a bunch which is good.

I would also use one of the better wax seals (with the little plastic funnel molded in). I think they better direct waste if the wax fails. I would also use a good set of toilet bolts (not some cheap ones) so removal is easier later on. Personally, I think the "toilet in a box" toilets, etc. are fine but the bolts are junk.

My only other comment would be like Spruce says-don't caulk it. This way if there is a leak you will know instead of it sneaking down through the floor.

Good luck.
John.

canuk
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?
JRuby2004 wrote:

Hi everyone,

Beyond hiring a contractor to retile my bathroom floor, I've been remodeling the bathroom myself. I went to install the toilet the other day, and I'm questioning if the flange is installed correctly.

Personally I wouldn't have left the tile out from under the flange. Instead it looks as though the easy way out was taken instead of notching the tile.
The reason being --- there is no support directly under the flange- toilet mounting bolts. Instead there is only a slight amount of the PVC resting on an adjoing tile which could crack or break off.

Quote:

There's some type of purple substance that appears to be sealing the interface between the flange and drain, but for the life of me I can't figure out the orientation of the pipes. If this is in fact a sealant, there are some gaps which would clearly allow drainage to seap through.

Being that the flange and drain are white colored indicates the material is PVC. When PVC piping is joined a primer is first applied before being solvent cemented ( glued )
In other words --- the purple residue you see is not a sealer but rather the primer / solvent-cement.

Quote:

Based on these pictures, can anyone tell what the drain/flange schematic looks like? Is this possibly a problem?

Not sure of the question --- as seen the the drain changes direction --- which is normal

canuk
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

Ah -- I see others were able to post while taking my sweet time :D

So --- ditto.

A. Spruce
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?
deadshort wrote:

You sure about that there sprucy? I think you ain't quite right with that statement.

Oh, I'm right, Mister! :rolleyes:;):p

I don't personally sweat it too much whether the flange is flush or sits on top of the finished surface. In my experience either works well in the real world. The variable really is the brand of toilet and the recess around its molded base.

JRuby2004
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

Thanks everyone for the feedback and suggestions. While the flange is not fully flush with the floor, it does look like a good portion of it rests on the tile. Also, the flange is indeed screwed down.

I installed it yesterday and unfortunately I think it's leaking from the outlet (although it's hard to tell). This is my first toilet installation, so there's a good chance I screwed something up. I'm going to check it later today. I have a feeling I messed up the wax ring.

Thanks!

JRuby2004
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

Well, as it turns out Spruce was 100% correct. I think the leak is due to the fact that the flange is not flush with the finished surface of the floor! Because it protrudes above the floor, there's no buffer for the wax ring to provide a seal.

Any idea on how to remedy this? Do wax rings come in various heights (i.e., if I had one that was an inch higher it could make up for the protruding flange)?

Thanks!

A. Spruce
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?
JRuby2004 wrote:

Any idea on how to remedy this? Do wax rings come in various heights (i.e., if I had one that was an inch higher it could make up for the protruding flange)?

Thanks!

The problem with a flange that is above the floor surface is that there is NOT enough room for the wax ring. In this case the ring gets completely squished out from under the toilet and doesn't seal. From the sounds of it, you have more space than a standard ring is able to fill. If this is the case, then yes, you can buy extra thick wax rings for this purpose.

JRuby2004
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

Yes, you're right. I mispoke. The ring was completely squished out from under the toilet. So in this case I guess a thicker ring would only result in more wax getting squished out, and still no seal.

Bay Area..Ca
Re: What is the drain/flange supposed to look like?

i would try a regular wax ring without the plastic horn because it looks like a 3" closet bend and the plastic horn might not be sitting properly.

Pages

Sponsored Stories

TV Listings

Find TV listings for This Old House and Ask This Old House in your area.