The toilet has a rock to it. Meaning that it rocks sometimes when you get up or sit down. It moves. Though a good feature for soothing an infant, this is not a good feature for a commode. Motion can lead to leaks. Movement reveals that the toilet is not secure, and I have heard stories of them tipping over, spilling their occupants surprised to the floor.
I know why the toilet rocks. When I first moved into this house, I replaced both toilets with Low-flow models to save water. You may not believe it, but Flint Michigan has some of the highest water bills in the nation. Legit. I pay top dollar for water I cannot drink. So, I had to find a way to get those water costs down. Hence the Low-flow toilets. The downstairs toilet was easy. Unscrewed it, picked it up, and walked it outside without spilling any toilet water. Put it a new wax ring, dropped the new one on, and it was good to go. I was feeling strong and proud in my newfound toilet installing abilities. But upstairs… that was a different story.
The upstairs toilet came up easy enough. But I couldn’t just drop a new toilet on. The old cast iron flange was rusted into a hundred pieces. I was in real trouble. I watched some youtube, figured out what to do, and began my work. I cleared the old flange out of the way. I put in a new plastic closet flange. And then I was supposed to screw this new flange into the floor. There was only one problem. I couldn’t drill a hole through the ceramic tile. I tried every drill bit I had, and only succeeded in breaking and dulling them out. It was long and frustrating work. Finally, I had enough. I was exasperated. And I made a decision. I had one hole that was decently drilled… and it would have to do. I attached it to the ground weakly, but thought to myself, “No one will ever know.” I mean, what could it hurt? What problems could possibly arrive from not anchoring a toilet to the floor… or to the pipe that carries it’s waste away?
Fast forward to now. This toilet has never been right. I cut corners way back then, and have paid the penalty for my laziness for over 12 months. I didn’t do the job right, and everybody who uses that toilet is gonna know real fast that something isn’t kosher.
So I pulled that toilet back off the flange. I went to the Depot and bought the RIGHT kind of drill bits, one that can drill through ceramic tile. I piloted the holes. I secured the flange. I then put the toilet on and actually secured that. And now we have a proper throne that befits a true blue American family.
The right tools, a willingness to learn, and a little patience produced a good product that will function properly for years to come. 5 hours of work will bring a generation of comfortable bathroom usage. It’s a good trade, and I am glad I made it.