Buy a toilet that fits
Before you head out and buy a new toilet, make sure you measure the space from the wall to where the base of the toilet will sit. There’s nothing worse than buying a toilet that won’t actually fit.
Assemble the toilet
Once you’ve bought your new toilet, assemble any parts together before actually installing it. The tank can be attached afterwards if that’s more convenient for you, but it can be easier to install this earlier rather than later. The toilet should come with instructions on how to put everything together.
Check the flange
The flange is basically what mounts the toilet to the floor, i.e. the pipe for the hole in the floor. This is where the waste goes when you flush the toilet. Before you install your new toilet first make sure that the flange isn’t damaged in any way. You can imagine the mess it would cause if there was a crack in the pipe that is removing your waste.
Install the bolts and wax ring
There are holes in the toilet flange for bolts that will hold the toilet in place. You will usually insert the head of the bolt into the hole and slide it into place. Once both of your bolts are in place, put the wax ring on the flange. You also have the option of putting the wax ring directly on the underside of the toilet, but putting it on the flange will keep it in place while you’re moving the toilet.
Put the toilet in place
Carefully place your new toilet on top of the flange. Make sure the bolts are positioned so they fit into the holes in the base of the toilet. Put a washer and nut on each of the bolts, but don’t completely tighten the nuts yet. Once you have the toilet in the correct place, push it firmly against the floor. Now you can tighten the nuts.
Check the toilet is level
Take a close look at the base of the toilet and make sure it’s level with the ground. You can sit on the toilet too to test whether it’s rocking back and forth. If your toilet is not level, try unscrewing the nuts and repositioning the toilet, or you can also put small coins under base to make it even.
Seal it in
Once you’ve tightened the nuts and the toilet is locked in place, install bolt caps on top of the bolts (the toilet should have come with these). Now you’re ready to seal in the base of the toilet using a silicon sealant. There are mixed reviews on whether this step is necessary – some people say this gives the toilet a cleaner look while others avoid doing this in case it delays finding leaks at the base.
Attach the water supply line
If you didn’t attach the tank in the initial steps, follow the manufacturer’s instructions and install the tank now. Once you’ve done that, you’ll need to attach the water supply link from the back of the tank to the supply (usually found at the wall behind the toilet).
Turn on the water and check for leaks
Once you have everything connected, turn on the supply valve (at the wall) and check for any leaks. The tank will fill up and stop when it hits a certain point. Watch to make sure everything is installed properly and the tank doesn’t overfill. If everything is in order, you’re good to go!