Closet flange height for tile [Archive] - Ceramic Tile Advice Forums - John Bridge Ceramic Tile


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07-23-2001, 02:43 PM
After removing the toilet I discovered that the closet flange is completely shot - busted and tilted, which could explain a few things. Anyway, it's cast iron and our house is slab on grade. Instead of busting up a big chunk of floor and trying to cut the cast in a hole (I'm not sure you can cut cast with a hack saw, even with a new blade) and splicing to PVC with a Furnco connector, I'm going to try leading a new one in, as suggested by a plumber (I'm not going to go into what the guy at Home Depot recommended I do, but it involved Liquid Nails). Any tips as far as the leading would be greatly appreciated. I've never even heard of this before, but I'm willing to give it a shot and try to do it the right way. So what does this have to do with tile? Approximately how high should I set the new flange so it will be the proper height in relation to the tile? What will be the approximate combined thickness of the tile/thinset, assuming a standard grade 8 x 8 ceramic floor tile? Thanks again.

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John Bridge
07-23-2001, 03:51 PM

I'm leaning toward the Liquid Nails approach myself. ;) We may have to start a separate board just for the foibles of HD.

I don't know that you are going to have the tools and equipment abailable to lead on a new flange. It entails melting the lead in an iron "pot" and ladelling it into the joint, after the joint has been stopped with oakum to keep the lead from bleeding through at the bottom.

What I have done with cast iron shower drains (and I don't know whether it meets code) is pack the joint with lead wool, sometimes referred to as lead "rope." This is a cold mold approach and requires no oakum. You get the part in place and start driving lengths of the lead wool into the joint. By drive I mean using something like a piece of metal rod, an old Craftsman screwdriver (Hi, Sonnie) or a small cold chisel and a hammer to pack this stuff in. The more you pack in the stiffer the joint becomes. Get enough tamped in there and you can't budge the part, and the joint will never leak.

I would do this in my own house. I would not call the county inspector to check it out. You can get the stuff at a plumbing supply, not Home Depot.

If your plumbing friend will lend you the stuff to do it with melted lead, go that route.

We don't want to lose you, but a great place to post your question would be on Terry Love's Plumbing Board. Maybe you'll get a reply and maybe you won't. It's worth a try, though.

And maybe some of my astute colleagues here have some tricks up their sleeves.

Bud Cline
07-23-2001, 04:05 PM
No tricks I know of gentlemen, the lead rope I would think would be the best and safest approach. There is a special tool used to pack lead wool/rope into joints and this would make the job easier. The same tool is used to pack the poured lead on top of the oakum.

Normally your floor tile will be 5/16" thick plus a litlle thinset, so if your stool flange is anywhere from 1/4" to 3/8" above your subfloor your safe. I don't know what code says. I do know those little wax rings work wonders.

It might be a little aggravating at first to get the stool flange fitting to stay in place until you get enough wool packed tight enough to really get going.

It takes an abundance of ambition to cut cast iron with a hack saw but I have seen it done. If you must remove some of the pipe try a pair of vise clamp pliers and nibble away at it in very small pieces.

Rob Z
07-23-2001, 04:27 PM

If you are not motivated enough to lead in a flange, use a flange made by Oatey that adapts to cast iron with a gasket on the outside of the portion of the flange that goes down into the pipe. this gasket is expanded outward to press into the pipe by turning three stainless hex screws that are inside the flange. I don't know the exact name of these animals. When I order them at the supply house, I just say "Hey Jim, I need one of those fancy flanges to adapt to cast iron..." And they know what I mean.

You can set this flange after the tile is set, so the flange rests on top of the finished floor.


John Bridge
07-23-2001, 05:08 PM
Now that's a neat gadget! Go for it. Oatey?

Rob Z
07-23-2001, 07:05 PM
Oh yea, I forgot to say that this fitting is PVC. And the little hex screws turn with the hex key for my trusty Milwaukee Sawzall.


07-23-2001, 11:16 PM
did someone delete my post from this earlier, I beleive I was the first one to answer. Maybe I am losing my mind here or maybe I never sent it in dunno...odd