This is usually a really simple job. The first step is to purchase the right supplies for the project.

The second step is to find a proper clearance company in case you need help with getting rid of the old toilet bowl or any tiles that come with it. Waste clearance is usually something to deal with in these situations, so be prepared with the right clearance services. A person will need a crescent wrench, and maybe even a pair of vise grips. A screw driver and a couple of rags.

First off, purchase a new wax seal for the bottom of the toilet. This is really important, and it keeps the toilet from leaking.

There should be a water shut off switch right under the toilet bowl. If not, one can always shut the water off at the main coming into the house for a few minutes. This really is all the time it should take to get the old toilet out, and the new one in. Once the water is off, flush the toilet and try to make sure the toilet bowl is completely empty. One should have a few dry towels to catch excess water, usually there will be a little spillage, but not much.

Next, unhook the water line right under the toilet bowl. If the new toilet is a lot taller, or shorter then one may have to buy a new hose that connects from the toilet bowl to the shut off switch or wall. Also, make sure that the threads are not damaged. One should have some teflon plumbers tape. It is about 1/4 inch wide, white in colour, and feels like plastic. This tape needs to be wrapped around any thread joints so water cannot escape through the threads.

There will be two screws holding the toilet down on the both sides of the base, and they may have plastic caps covering the screws. The screws are usually two different threads. On the bottom it is a wood screw to hold it down to the floor, and on the top it is threaded for the nut with a metal washer. Take off the nuts, and pull the old toilet out.

Clean off the flange then put the new wax seal onto the bottom of the toilet where the old one was. Make sure only the wax seal goes on the toilet, not any plastic or paper, the seal may have been wrapped in. Then put the new toilet in, and make sure everything lines up. Once in place, one can gently sit on it to squish the wax seal into place.

Replace nuts and reconnect the water line. Turn water back on and everything should be fine. All you have to do is get that clearance company over to handle the junk removal of all the leftovers – after all, you did all this work yourself, no need to do the rubbish removal as well, not when you can find an affordable clearance service to handle it for you. After that enjoy the fruit of your labor.

Are you doing your own renovations this year? Share with us in the comments.

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  • Wow. Cheers. We want to remove a shower and install a bath. Can we have an article on that please. (doing ti cheaply too)


  • I agree with everyone else here; this is not how it happens in Australia. Please correct this article or delete it before anyone tries this and causes damage to their floor.


  • This is a great big mistake!!!
    Why is this incorrect and non-Australian compliant article still here?


  • Thank you for the informative article.


  • Our toilet does need replacing. Not sure I would be confident to do it myself tho. Even though this article makes it look reasonably easy


  • That sounds easy, but I think I rather have it done by a good plumber !


  • Mmmmm, hubby has done this and other bathroom reno’ work for us and family members in last few years. The instructions, information and details are nothing like reality so far as we have seen. Is this a cheap knock off reprint from the US? Most of the terminology is not Australian so we doubt the validity of its usefulness here. A very basic and incomplete and incorrect guide, and should be questioned. Plumbing is not for the faint hearted.

    • This article is very misleading on a few points. There is no “wax seal”, I’m presuming this refers to the rubber you can replace on the pan connector. The flexible hose for the water connection connects onto the cistern not the pan (bowl), and has a rubber seal in both ends eliminating the need for telfon/plumbers tape. Before purchasing a new toilet you will need to check the setout of your current suite. This measurement is from the finished wall to the centre of the waste pipe, and needs to line up with your existing measurement . P trap is through the wall, s trap is through the floor. If you dont know what you’re doing, get a plumber.


  • Great article for all DIY’ers. It certainly isn’t hard. If you can’t get a rubbish remover, hold on to it till your next Council rubbish removal is on – usually twice a year with most Councils in Australia.


  • Thank you for this article, will come in very handy. The old toilet bowl can make an interesting planter or fish pond if water tight.


  • Thanks for the article but l won’t be replacing mine at the moment.


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