Distance From the Toilet to the Wall Framing

Installation of a new toilet is usually a fairly straightforward procedure. If you are replacing a toilet with one of equal dimensions, you simply must turn off the water supply, disconnect the water line and unbolt the toilet from the floor, reversing the procedure to install the new unit. If you are installing a toilet of larger dimensions or moving the location of the toilet, the distance of the toilet drain from the wall comes into play.

  1. Toilet Placement

    • One question many homeowners have when installing a toilet is how far the toilet should be from the wall framing. Since the installation location of the toilet depends on the location of the drain, the placement of the toilet should come into consideration early in the bathroom plumbing process. The last thing you want is a drain that is placed to close to the wall, which may make the installation of the toilet tank nearly impossible. A toilet that is placed too far away from the wall may create traffic problems in the bathroom and waste precious floor space.

    Rough-in Measurement

    • A new toilet should come with the rough in-measurement for the drain printed on its instruction sheet. The rough-in measurement is a measurement taken from the wall to the center of the toilet drain. For many toilets, this length is 12 inches. While this may be the correct measurement for a standard builder-grade toilet, it may not be for other models of toilets.

    Measuring Your Toilet

    • If you are unsure of the toilet rough-in measurement, you can measure the toilet yourself. Attach the toilet flange to the underside of the toilet, and bolt the toilet tank into position on the bowl. Place the toilet tank lid into position. Measure from the center of the drain hole in the toilet flange to the rear edge of the toilet tank lid. Add one inch to this measurement to ensure adequate clearance from the wall. This should ensure that the toilet is the correct distance from the wall when installed.

    Wall Covering Allowance

    • Take into consideration, when roughing-in toilet drains, that if the wall behind the toilet is bare framing, such as new construction or a complete bathroom makeover in which the wall covering has been removed, you must add the width of the wall covering that will be installed on the wall to your rough-in measurement to ensure that the toilet has adequate clearance from the wall.

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