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  • Removing a toilet and need to cap...

    I am removing a toilet from a bathroom on the second floor. For the time being a replacement will not bet installed. How can I seal off the drain? What do I need to get to do this?

    thanks in advance

  • #2
    Sealing off a toilet drain

    Hi Guy,
    Not a plumber here, but have removed and set countless toilets for homeowners. Here's what I do for what it's worth. Once you turn off the water inlet and pull the toilet up, take a heavy rag and stuff it in the hole in the floor. That keeps gases from coming into the room and keeps little parts you might drop from sliding down into the abyss. Then take an old putty knife and clean up all the old wax from the wax ring that's left around the toilet bowl flange. Clean it up real good, but no need to go nuts. I like to have it cleaned up so there's not any old rust or gunk sticking to whatever residual wax is left in place. Now if it's going to be open for a day or so, take a piece of 1/2 inch plywood and cover the flange and rag with that so nobody (like some kid, mine were notorious for doing stupid things like that) tries to stick their hand or foot down the hole. When you're ready to set the toilet REMEMBER TO REMOVE THE RAG FROM THE HOLE BEFORE PUTTING THE TOILET ON THE FLANGE. If you forget this vital step, you'll wonder why the poop doesn't go down the hole. And, when you're ready to set the toilet, you can warm up the new wax ring either in a big bowl of warm (NOT HOT) water, or nuke it in your microwave for like 20 seconds on a medium high. This gets the wax warm enough so when you set the toilet, the wax will form a really nice seal around the toilet flange and around the bottom of the toilet. Once that wax ring is down, you CANNOT, pull the toilet up to check if it sealed or not. If you lift the wax ring, you have probably ruined the seal and need to get a new wax ring and start again. Good luck with the job. It's not as hard as it sounds. If you have more questions ask again, or if this isn't clear, you can rag at me and I'll try to explain better.
    Jim Don

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by JimDon
      Hi Guy,
      Not a plumber here, but have removed and set countless toilets for homeowners. Here's what I do for what it's worth. Once you turn off the water inlet and pull the toilet up, take a heavy rag and stuff it in the hole in the floor. That keeps gases from coming into the room and keeps little parts you might drop from sliding down into the abyss. Then take an old putty knife and clean up all the old wax from the wax ring that's left around the toilet bowl flange. Clean it up real good, but no need to go nuts. I like to have it cleaned up so there's not any old rust or gunk sticking to whatever residual wax is left in place. Now if it's going to be open for a day or so, take a piece of 1/2 inch plywood and cover the flange and rag with that so nobody (like some kid, mine were notorious for doing stupid things like that) tries to stick their hand or foot down the hole. When you're ready to set the toilet REMEMBER TO REMOVE THE RAG FROM THE HOLE BEFORE PUTTING THE TOILET ON THE FLANGE. If you forget this vital step, you'll wonder why the poop doesn't go down the hole. And, when you're ready to set the toilet, you can warm up the new wax ring either in a big bowl of warm (NOT HOT) water, or nuke it in your microwave for like 20 seconds on a medium high. This gets the wax warm enough so when you set the toilet, the wax will form a really nice seal around the toilet flange and around the bottom of the toilet. Once that wax ring is down, you CANNOT, pull the toilet up to check if it sealed or not. If you lift the wax ring, you have probably ruined the seal and need to get a new wax ring and start again. Good luck with the job. It's not as hard as it sounds. If you have more questions ask again, or if this isn't clear, you can rag at me and I'll try to explain better.
      Jim Don

      Jim Don,

      Quote: "Not a plumber here..." Damn right your not.

      Microwave the wax ring? Not necessary. It will work fine cold.

      It you are leaving the waste outlet open for an extended period of time I would suggest a "dollar plug". It will probably be a 4". This plug has a wingnut on the top which will tighten a rubber gasket inside the pipe.

      I would suggest Jim go back to his day job, if he has one.
      the dog

      Comment


      • #4
        I concure with dog. The bowl wax actually works better cold than it will warm. You may have to turn the bowl sids to side to get the wax to fully seat but it will be a better seal.

        As dog mentioned use the "dollar plug" to seal the sewer gas as the rag will not stop gases.

        Mark
        "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

        I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

        Comment


        • #5
          Plugging toilet outlet

          Sorry Guys,
          ToUtah Now and PlumbDog.
          I must have made a mistake and posted in the electricians forum, not the plumbing forum.
          And for what it's worth. I didn't see either of you jumping in to help out a guy who asked a question.
          Just my two cents worth.
          Jim Don

          Comment


          • #6
            Jim,

            I wasn't dumping on you I was stating how I as a plumber for 30+ years would handle the task. As for not answering his question fast enough I am working out of State Sundays through Fridays and it is a five hour drive each way. I guess I could have pulled over and used an air card in my laptop but I figured any questions could wait.

            So that you know, sewer gas is not just unpleasant smelling it can also be both explosive and toxic given the right condition. A proper test cap (dollar plug) will eliminate the chance of losing the rag down the drain and/or allowing any gases to enter the home.

            peace out-Mark
            "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

            I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!

            Comment


            • #7
              i guess i was a day late and a dollar plug short on this one

              i just got home

              never tried the microwave thing

              stay cool you all

              rick.
              phoebe it is

              Comment


              • #8
                CMON Guys.. no fighting over a plug..

                So it is called a Dollar Plug. As for more info, the pipe will be uncovered for an extended period of time. It will be open for a few months.

                I had a leak that went into the floor and I have to rip up the floor and everything around it. The bathroom was getting remodeled anyway...

                Thanks for the info on plugging this hole...

                Comment


                • #9
                  glad i could help. .................................................. ............................. lol
                  9/11/01, never forget.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    You mean sewer gas stinks?

                    ToUtahNow- I’m jealous. You mean you can still smell sewer gas? The only time I put the wax in hot water is when it’s been sitting in my van all night in the winter. Otherwise, cold is good.
                    One of the best lessons I learned from my father is when he did nothing to help me. I then learned to help my self.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Where can I buy one of these dollar plugs? I'm guessing they wouldn't have them at Home Depot or Lowes.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by fronty
                        Where can I buy one of these dollar plugs? I'm guessing they wouldn't have them at Home Depot or Lowes.

                        Nevermind..................

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Removing a toilet and need to cap...

                          Here's a follow-up - what would I do to permanently remove a toilet (from the basement in this case) and cap the opening? Dollar plug again? Or something else?

                          Comment

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