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ScottyB 11-19-2012 10:10 PM

Toilet flange too high
I got a new toilet to replace an old water hog. I soon found that the old toilet was installed in a gruesome manner. There's a 4 inch iron pipe going into the foundation and the old toilet had no flange. It had a wax ring smashed onto the top of the opening with a ton of putty and the toilet itself was held down by bolts sunk into the concrete.

A four inch flange won't fit into the pipe, the pipe is just a hair too small. I got a flange to work with this setup that has a smaller diameter neck with a gasket, however, the pipe tapers up a little wider where it joins the flange and this makes the flange stick up off the floor about 1/4 inch. I could secure it to the floor like this, but the toilet wouldn't sit flush. It would rest on the flange and not on its own base.

Any ideas? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

ScottyB 11-19-2012 10:25 PM

I'm thinking I might just get a flange for a 3 inch pipe and secure it to the floor. Thoughts on this?

funfool 11-19-2012 10:33 PM

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I suggest new tile floor :thumbsup:

Something like this may work well for you, without seeing what you have.
Then it depends on what you have on top of the joist.
Lets pretend you have 1"x10" running on a diagonal across your floor joist.
Would be common for old cast iron, then is some sort of 5/8" or 3/4" on top of the 1x10.

This piece will slide into your 4" pipe, want it flush with finished floor and not sitting on top of finished floor.
Simple fix but may not work for you without knowing what current floor is.

joecaption 11-19-2012 10:42 PM

Really need a picture of what you have now.
When I find one like your discribing most had a lead sleave, that may be why the size is differant.
Often go under the floor cut out all the old cast iron I can (it's going to leak at some point anyway.) and replace with new PVC.

TheEplumber 11-19-2012 10:55 PM

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Two ways I fix this problem- actually 3
1. Find a flange that doesn't have the radius
2. Use a grinder with a thin cut off blade a cut off the pipe as needed.
3. This is risky though plumbers do it often: slip a crescent wrench over the end of the pipe about a 1/4" and tighten the wrench down on the pipe wall. Slowly apply pressure by levering the wrench towards the center of the pipe. If done properly, you'll snap off however much pipe you have in the wrench. Continue this process all the way around the circumference.
As I said, this is risky. I have seen the pipe crack too far to be saved, but that is rare.
Proceed with caution if you use my 3rd option.

ScottyB 11-20-2012 02:48 AM

I'm dealing with a concrete slab that has a 4" iron pipe stuck into it. The pipe is laid into the foundation and there's no raised floor, just some linoleum. The area around the pipe was never cut for a flange. I'll try to get a pic in the morning.

jbs11 11-20-2012 08:42 AM

They also make bases that raise the toilet 1/2" or so for this problem. For example:

ScottyB 11-20-2012 07:25 PM

Thanks for the comments and suggestions guys. I was hoping there was a piece of technology or perhaps a flange that I wasn't thinking of. Instead I took an angle grinder to the pipe edge and the cement just around it to make the flange fit snugly against the floor.

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