Is Your Toilet Rocks Back and Forth ? Here’s How to Fix It

Written by Toilets

Fixing a toilet that rocks back and forth requires the use of some type of wax or seal to ensure that the base of the toilet is firmly rooted to the floor. A wax ring is a very simple and effective attachment. The sticky, pliable wax is expanded by the pressure of the toilet base creating a watertight seal. However, the seal can at times fail because the wax is malleable and soft. This may prompt replacement of the wax ring.

Signs of Wax Ring Failure

One of the first signs of a failing wax ring is the presence of water on the floor around the base of the toilet. It is important to know that water might not be visible on the floor if the toilet installer used caulk around the base of the toilet. Nevertheless, water from a toilet that rocks back and forth can leak to subfloors causing significant damage. Another sign of a failing wax ring is an unpleasant odor in the bathroom. Broken wax ring seals allow sewer gases to inundate the bathroom.

If you have a toilet that leaks at the base, Click here.

Other Culprits

Water on the floor is not necessarily a sign of a failing wax ring. The water could be leaking either from the base of the toilet or the toilet tank. A toilet with a cracked base or loose mounting bolts is also likely to leak. In addition, a toilet with a damaged flange is likely to rock back and forth. Whether you have a faulty wax ring or not, consider installing a new wax ring if your toilet rocks back and forth.

Wax Ring Replacement

Replacing a wax ring is a simple DIY project. Remove the old wax ring and check the flange for any damage. Use a flange repair kit to repair the flange if necessary.

See the article ‘Toilet Installation Tips‘ for learning how to replace a toilet wax ring.

Choosing a New Ring

Wax rings are available with or without an affixed polyethylene “boot” or rubber that extends into the opening of the toilet flange. Although plain wax rings may not come with added boot protection, they usually fit all toilets.

Kevin L. Sharp

Kevin L. Sharp

He began his career in plumbing at the age of 14 while still in high school. Kevin Sharp has a bachelor's degree in journalism from Illinois State University.
Kevin L. Sharp

Last modified: September 12, 2017

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