How to Replace a Toilet Spud

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You shouldn't have to hire an expensive contractor just to replace a toilet spud in your home. Replace a toilet spud with help from an experienced construction professional in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Plumbing Help
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Hi, this is Nicholas Iarocci, the home source guy, The President and owner of Source Development Inc, a residential and commercial construction company in Garnerville, New York and this is how to replace a toilet spud. Now, what exactly is a toilet spud? Well, a spud is a connection between a top or bottom base to a top, a base of a toilet. The spud can be an connection in any form. There's a spud gasket, which is a rubber gasket and it comes in totally different forms for every application that you're applying. Ours is a Kohler toilet and it's got a triangular type of gasket that fits on it and I'll show you how to replace that in a second. But, we're going to start off with replacing a toilet spud here, we're going to remove our lid, gently set it aside, you're going to notice that there's a connection between the toilet top and the bottom and the connection is usually these brass bolts on modern type toilets. So first we're going to turn off our supply and then we're going to evacuate the toilet, holding the lever down, so all the water runs out of the top tank and in to the toilet. So once the toilet has been evacuated there's going to be some residual water left at the bottom of the tank, we're going to take a rag and just take out the remaining residual waters. We're going to remove our supple line now, most of them are just finger tight supply, so one or two breaks of the, with an adjustable pliers is all it takes. Now water is going to start dripping out so it's good to have a little cup below you and use the pipe as a drip so the lowest point of the, you know pipe is where the water is going to drip off from. So just under the tank, you'll notice bolts, toilet bolts that connect the top toilet tank with the gasket in between the bottom bowl, we're going to break that with the pliers and remove our bolts. So this is a model toilet, it's brand new, so it's going to be very easy for me to remove the bolts, but in certain applications you'll have to saw them off and this osculating tool is great for confined spaces, it oscillates back and forth, it won't do damage to your china, it's really a great tool for this type of application, you just sit there and saw it off. What happens is that throughout the years the brass along with, you know the waters natural minerals actually seize the bolts and sometimes, you know it'll give you a hard time getting it off so it's just a, you know just as easy to just cut them off and, and replace them. I'm going to continue to remove the rest of the bolts that I have and in this particular application I have three. Again, this is a Kohler toilet, so it's got this triangular gasket type of application. Once that's all done, I'm going to remove the toilet tank from the base and I'm going to elevate this around so you could see this, so this is basically the spud gasket, this is the connection, this rubber connection between the, the tank and the toilet base here and this is our overflow that you see that screwed through it. We're going to try to take our overflow off by loosening a nut, this design is pretty typical on most toilets, by the way. So if you noticed, I tried pulling out the screw that gave me a hard time, so I rotated the screw out and it, you know separated from the rubber pretty easily. In this particular gasket, works on compression, so as you compress the screw or tighten the screw to the base of the tank the stem gets pushed down and expands and compresses around the hole here and gives you an air, a water-tight seal. So, we're going to take this off, this last one, it's giving me a really hard time by the way. You saw how difficult it was for me to get this off, sometimes they, they will give you a hard time. Again, it's made to have a water tight seal, so this bolt actually fits in there pretty snug and that's another reason why if it's giving you a hard time and you're going to replace it you might just want to cut off the bolt and just make your life easier and just pop it off. So we're going to reinstall our same gasket here because it's a brand new toilet, but you could see I've got plump pack just out of any supply house will get you a replacement part. A good idea is to apply a little plumbers grease just on the inside of the base and on the stems of this gasket and the bottom, just to give you that water tight seal, it just helps you just in case you didn't tighten in enough and all this stuff should be really snug. You should always be careful with the china, you don't want to break the china. Okay, we're going to start by inserting our gasket, spud gasket. The overflow for the tank has to come back in and tighten with a nut. I'm going to position the overflow, and I'm going to check the overflow to make sure it's in the right position and there's everything is running smoothly, which it should to be honest with you. I want to make sure that, that's. So we're ready to put the bolts back in, again, we're going to apply a little lubricant here, Vaseline or plumbers grease is great, just to make sure that the bolt can go right through the opening very easily, we're going to push it through, just until it just starts getting seated. You might want to apply a little plumbers grease here on the flange here just to make sure you have a great, you know seal between the tank and the bottom base. Okay, so we're going to line up the bolt holes and drop it right in. So now we're going to place back in our bolts at the bottom of the tank, start with our washer, what's going to happen is as you try it tighten it the gasket is going to push up on the bolt, so you really want to try to push down at the same time, get some compression, push down on the screw and get some compression started between the, the bolt and the screw head. Go do the back one. Okay, so now that we've got the bolts in place we're going to to tighten them, now normally I like to use a little socket wrench with it, but I don't have one, so I'm going to use my adjustable pliers here and basically we're just going to torque down on it and the reason I like to use is a socket wrench is because it's more accessible to all the elements of tight spaces. And just make it snug and you want to check underneath it that the expansion that it's fitting snugly against the base and that the bolt has been expanded and compressed and if not you can go back and tighten it later on, if you notice a drip or something, but overall you want to be gentle with the porcelain, so don't over tighten, don't go, you know crazy, just make sure it's snug and usually the weight of the tank filled with water is enough to keep it, you know keep a nice seal on it. Lastly, we're ready to connect our supply, again this is a no burst pipe, it doesn't need a lot of pressure and turn on our valve. So once we've refilled the toilet and checked for leaks, we're done. So this was how to replace a toilet spud gasket. This is Nicholas Iarocci the home source guy. President and owner of Source Development Inc, a residential and commercial construction company in Garnerville, New York. And we're helping you build a better life. We'll see you next time

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