Offset toilet flanges are often more challenging to install than the standard or deep flanges, but they allow you to move your toilet slightly in any direction. This guide highlights some of the most common toilet flange problems and how to solve them.
While offset toilet flanges exhibit a lot of problems during setup, sometimes using an offset flange can be the best solution. Even minor errors in your offset toilet flange installation can cause problems in the future, so it’s always best to hire a professional to do the job.
What Is The Purpose Of An Offset Toilet Flange?
Before discussing the various issues with toilet flanges, let’s look at their importance in your bathroom. A flange that matches the inside of your toilet helps to secure the toilet seat on your bathroom floor, but an offset flange helps you with more complicated problems.
Offset flanges are applicable where openings of your toilet pipes appear to be too close to or too far from your wall. Sometimes it’s difficult to attach pipes to your toilet, so if you have such a problem, you can set up an offset toilet flange to secure the toilet bowl.
Like a standard closet flange, which connects your toilet to the wall at a right angle to the drain line, an offset toilet flange secures your toilet to the bathroom floor. Therefore, you might decide to put a toilet bowl just inches away from the toilet’s pipe opening. It can be any angle that you choose.
Can An Offset Toilet Flange Cause Problems?
It is possible that using an offset toilet flange may cause issues in your washroom if you didn’t correctly install and use a flange on your bathroom wall. It is imperative that you have a high-quality, well-functioning closet flange.
Common Offset Toilet Flange Problems
Some prevalent problems you’ll experience with offset toilet flanges are leakages and clogging.
If you don’t properly secure your toilet bowl to the bathroom floor, or if you don’t properly seal it, it can create leakages.
If you don’t screw up your toilet flange perfectly, it will cause your toilet to clog. It can also cause other problems, like blocking the vents in your bathroom. But you have to remember that clogging your toilet can result from other reasons. For instance, flushing certain objects down your toilet can cause a clog in the drain, damage to the sewer line, or create an obstruction in your toilet plumbing vents.
Advantages and Disadvantages of an Offset Toilet Flange
Now, let’s look at the pros and cons of offset toilet flanges.
- Offset toilet flanges allow you to place toilet bowls in the correct place. If the pipe opening in your closet is too far or close to your bathroom wall, use an offset flange to position the toilet and pipes. This will prevent you from having to break expensive ceramic tiles when you try to install the toilet. It also allows you to install a closet seat on an inverted pipe that is too far away from your wall. This will save you the cost of reworking your plumbing lines.
- Installation can be time-consuming, futile, and frustrating if you do not have the required skills to set up an offset toilet flange. Setting up an offset toilet flange is more challenging than installing a standard flange. If you don’t have the proper knowledge and experience to do the job safely, it’s best to hire a reliable plumber to do the work for you. This will ensure that the toilet is correctly secured to the wall and that there are no clogs or leaks.
Common Mistakes that People Do While Handling an Offset Toilet Flange
There are several mistakes that most house owners make while using an offset toilet flange. These include:
1. Most people fail to move the toilet in different directions
If you’ve got an offset toilet flange, you can gently move your toilet by approximately two inches when the drainpipe is placed near the bathroom wall. If you don’t choose the correct flange or install it incorrectly, it will be impossible to place your toilet exactly where you want it to be.
Fix it by buying the correct offset flange for your toilet and ensuring it fits properly. You must also install the flange correctly!
2. Buying the Wrong Type of Offset Toilet Flange
Offset flanges are made of different materials, including cast iron and PVC. If you purchase a cheap offset toilet flange, you’ll likely have problems. Ensure you purchase a high-quality product that will last many years.
An exemplary flange has a d-shaped end that provides a good seal that keeps the water out. The flange should also look nice, with the bottom part being more rounded and the top part more square.
Some flanges are not very angular and are designed to look like bowls. It is harder to achieve an excellent seal with such an offset toilet flange since most of them are not compatible with typical toilet wax rings.
How to Set Up an Offset Toilet Flange
Installing a toilet flange with an offset opening is essential to avoid any problems. Pick the correct flange for your toilet, depending on the drainpipe size on your toilet, and buy the necessary mounting bolts and wax ring to ensure that the toilet is securely installed in the bathroom.
Here are DIY steps you can follow to set up an offset toilet flange correctly:
- First, turn off the water supply to your toilet.
- Remove the toilet slowly and carefully.
- Disconnect and scrap the old wax ring that protects the toilet bowl.
- Remove the toilet flange to access the drain pipe.
- Install the new flange for your toilet, followed by a new wax ring.
- Install your new toilet and tighten two mounting bolts to secure the offset flange to the bathroom floor.
- Turn on your toilet’s shut-off valve to allow water to flow into its tank. Flush to test that the toilet works as expected.
How to Measure the Rough-In For Your Offset Toilet Flange
It is necessary to keep the distance between the wall and your toilet seat to 10-14 inches. If the drain line is too far or too close to your bathroom wall, you can still install the toilet seat by using an offset flange. But you must make sure to rough in your flange before you start installing a toilet seat.
How to do it:
- First, take off the offset flange and put some plastic over the drainpipe to prevent it from leaking.
- Find out how far from the toilet you should put your toilet bowl. Measure carefully from the center of the toilet flange to the back wall.
- Find out the center point of your toilet by measuring at least fifteen inches from the back of your toilet to the front, to the left, and to the right. Mark the exact spot where you want your toilet to sit and adjust the offset flange in a manner that helps you to fit your toilet firmly into place.
- Position your offset toilet flange in the designated area and make appropriate adjustments. After you feel satisfied with the position, install the flange and seal it.
Can I rotate my toilet 180 degrees to position it in the toilet bowl?
Rotating your toilet 180 degrees is dependent on two key dimensions. First, most toilets have a 12-inch rough-in, which implies that the middle line of its drain ought to be at least 12″ from the bathroom wall behind the lavatory. The other key dimension is that the drain pipe should be at least 15″ from the two sides of a toilet.
What is the farthest distance I can move my toilet from the stack?
If you have a waste line that is 3 inches in diameter, you can move your toilet within 6 feet of the toilet stack. Toilets can move far away from your stack as long as the length of the waste line is 4 inches.
Should the flange on a toilet rotate?
Since your toilet is linked to the drain line via a flange, you should rotate the offset flange in order to place your toilet where you want it.
You won’t have any issues if you choose the right size and type of offset flange for your toilet. Nevertheless, you must be careful when installing the flange on your toilet. If you don’t feel confident enough to do it yourself, consider hiring an experienced plumber.
Amos Christen graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Interior Design from Drexel University — Philadelphia, PA. Since 2003, Amos has worked with top interior design professionals in that area, including architects and interior/graphic/lighting designers. As a skilled interior designer, Amos Christen is highly versed in fine arts and crafts and uses that to supplement his main area of expertise. He often publishes articles related to home décor on several websites, including Sprucetoilets.com, Sprucebathroom.com, and Mybesuitedhome.com. He also contributes to leading interior design magazines.