If you’re seeing water around the base of your toilet, this could only mean that there’s a leak somewhere in the fixture.
If you notice a leak around the base of your toilet you should fix it immediately to avoid further damage. That small leak could easily turn your bathroom into a swimming pool or even cause more structural damage to your house.
Let’s look at a few causes of the problem and why your toilet could be leaking from the base even after you have replaced the wax ring.
Why Your Toilet Could Be Leaking at the Base
It’s not quite uncommon to hear people asking, “Why is my toilet leaking at the base?” Here are some of the possible reasons for the problem and what you can do to mitigate the damage.
Loose or Broken T-Bolts
This is probably one of the most common reasons for toilets leaking at the base. T-bolts are basically plastic caps that hold the toilet in place at the base.
When T-bolts break or become loose, the toilet seal can also break and cause leaks. If you notice loose or broken T-bolts at the base of your toilet, you should reposition the toilet to ensure that it’s properly centered and leveled. You can then tighten the bolts before you replace the cap.
If the bolts still spin freely after you have tightened them, then they are probably broken. In this case, the only option is to replace the T-bolts altogether.
Once the bolts are securely tightened or broken ones replaced, flush the toilet again. If the leakage still persists you may need to check the wax seal under the toilet to see if it’s the cause of the leakage.
Check the Wax Ring Again
In some cases, a damaged wax ring could be the cause of toilet leaks. The wax ring acts as a seal between the toilet and the floor to ensure that dirty water doesn’t seep onto the floor of your bathroom.
However, the seal can disintegrate or get damaged with time causing the T-bolts to become loose and ineffective in holding the toilet firmly on the floor.
You may have replaced the wax ring in the recent past but due to poor workmanship or use of low-quality products, your new wax ring malfunctions making it necessary to get a replacement.
If you want to replace a broken or damaged wax ring, we highly recommend getting a professional plumber to do the job because it’s a complicated task best left to someone with experience in bathroom plumbing.
A Clogged Drain Line
The toilet leak could also be caused by a clogged drain line. You could easily discover this when you lifted your toilet off to change the wax ring.
A clogged drain line means that waste and water don’t flush down the drain and may end up putting more pressure on your wax ring and causing leaks.
You can also tell your drain line has a clog when water and waste fail to drain. If you find yourself frequently trying to plunge the toilet after flushing or the toilet seems to drain very slowly, your drain line is probably clogged and not working as it should.
In this case, you will need to hire the services of a professional to clear the drain line and eliminate all the leakages around the base of your toilet.
Cracks on the Toilet Bowl
Your toilet could be leaking from the base after replacing its wax ring because of cracks or damage on its bowl. This isn’t quite common but it does happen.
The good news is that you can easily repair the problem using a sealant. Just remember to turn off the water supply and ensure that the toilet bowl is completely drained and dry before you use a sealant to repair the broken or cracked toilet bowl.
Turn off the water supply and ensure that the toilet bowl is completely drained and dry before you use a sealant to repair the broken or cracked toilet bowl.
If the crack is too big or the leak still persists, you should consider replacing the toilet bowl altogether.
Weak or Rotting Wood Under the Toilet
Toilet leaks often happen between the floor and bottom of the toilet.
This is because the toilet moves slightly every time someone sits on it. The toilet should ideally sit firmly and not move at all.
If it does move, the problem could be the wood under the toilet, which may be rotting or weakening. A professional plumber will assess the problem and inform you if the floor is the cause of the leak.
Dealing with toilet leaks isn’t as easy as it seems. You may need to completely reinstall the toilet.
If you’re not conversant with bathroom plumbing tasks, we highly recommend calling a qualified certified plumber from a certified plumbing company to handle the job more professionally.