The optimum height of your toilet flange is 1/4 inches above the finished floor. Failure to set it to the appropriate elevation can make your toilet wobbly and even cause base leaks, so it’s paramount to install your toilet flange correctly.
The rocking and leaking can break or warp your bathroom floor, and the water can also cause mold and mildew accumulation, and cause the subfloor to rot.
Can a Toilet Flange Be Half Inch Above the Floor?
A toilet flange cannot be half inch above the floor as the recommended maximum height of toilet flange above the finished floor is ¼ inches. This standard height allows for any type of wax ring to be installed while ensuring a good tight seal.
What if The Toilet Flange Is Above the Floor?
If the toilet flange is above the floor more than the recommended height then you can fix this problem in three ways. These are:
- Fill the gap between the floor and toilet bottom with grout
- Raise the toilet floor
- Replace the toilet flange
Fill The Gap Using Grout
This is the most cost-effective and easiest way to fix a toilet flange 1/2 above the floor. You can opt for this method if you have a tight budget but looking for an effective solution.
You will need water, grout, a small bowl, and rubber shims to execute this solution. With all the supplies in hand, do the following:
- Mix The Grout
Most grouts are in powder form, so you will need to create a paste by mixing it with water. Scoop some grout and put it in a small bowl, then pour in the water in the grout-to-water ratio of 6:1.
Be careful not to use excess water because that will make the mixture too runny, thus taking longer to dry or become ineffective altogether.
- Set The Toilet In Place
Set your toilet in place if it rocks backward and forward, ensuring it sits straight before you begin fixing it. Wedge rubber shims in between the floor and the toilet in different areas to keep it steady and level while you work.
3 . Apply Grout
Apply grout all around the toilet aside from where you put the rubber shims, then let it dry for 24 hours. Remove the shims after that time has elapsed, grout the spaces you removed the shims from, then wait for 24 more hours to let it dry.
You can accelerate the drying process by spraying water on the grout. Once the grout is fully dried, tighten the toilet’s nuts to secure it in place.
If applied correctly, grout will seal the gaps, preventing the toilet from moving around or leaking.
Raise The Floor
This is another viable option, but it’s time-consuming, expensive, and may entail temporarily taking out other fixtures in your bathroom. Nonetheless, it can be an excellent choice if you intend to remodel your washroom.
If you choose to do it, make sure you get thicker flooring to eliminate the height disparity between your current bathroom floor and the toilet flange. Since your toilet flange is sitting 1/2 an inch higher than your bathroom flooring, you will need to buy tiles or flooring of your choice of similar thickness.
You will then need to remove the old flooring and lay the new one to solve the issue, resulting in a stable, leak-free toilet.
If you go with tiles, install the tiles under your toilet because the flange has to be on the finished floor, meaning the toilet sits there too. Alternatively, you can tile around your toilet if you don’t want to remove the existing tiles.
However, it’s better to remove the old tiles then lay down new ones to prevent issues.
See also Can A Toilet Flange Sit Below Tile?
Replace The Toilet Flange
A new toilet flange can also be an excellent solution, especially if you know how to replace it. The project will involve removing the old toilet flange then replacing it with a new one.
To do the job, you will need a new flange, drill, PVC saw, screwdriver, a sharp blade, chisel, tape measure, putty knife, and a hammer.
Below are the steps for replacing a toilet flange.
a) Take Out The Toilet
The first step is to stop the water by shutting off the valve, then take out the floor and set it aside. You will need to loosen the nuts holding the toilet in place before lifting it off the floor.
b) Detach The Old Toilet Flange
Remove the outer parts of the flange carefully using a hammer and chisel, making sure you don’t crack the underneath pipe. Alternatively, use a speed drill that has a 4-in-hole saw to cut off the outer flange.
In addition, you must make the requisite adjustments when cutting if the pipe emerging from the floor is angled.
d) Remove The Fitting
Getting the fitting out of the pipe involves developing score cuts in two parts of the pipe separated from each other by less than one inch on the fitting side. Make sure you don’t cut beyond the fitting, then pop it out with a screwdriver.
It will likely break, but that is okay; just pop out the broken pieces by sliding the screwdriver.
e) Grind Down The Pipe
Sometimes the attached pipe pops above the floor, raising the toilet flange’s height. If that’s the situation in your bathroom, you will need to grind it down using a PVC saw until its height matches the floor.
f) Put In The New Flange
Insert your new toilet flange into the drain pipe, pushing until the rubber seal forms a firm grip inside the pipe. Use a quarter-inch drill bit to create mounting holes on the floor, then secure the flange by drilling Tapcon screws through the holes.
The toilet flange must be mounted on the floor to make sure it doesn’t wobble after installation. Moreover, use a level to check that you attached the flange correctly and adjust if need be before fitting the toilet.
Clearly you cannot have the toilet flange half inch above the floor. What you need to do when you discover that the is to lower the height of the flange to ¼ inch which is the recommended standard.
You can do that in three ways, either fill the gap using grout, raise the floor or replace the toilet flange all together. The whole job can be tasking and may require the help of a plumber to turn out great.
See also How To Raise Toilet Flange 2 Inches