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Why Is My Toilet Leaking At The Base

leaking toilet can be a major annoyance and a cause for concern in any household. While there can be various reasons behind a toilet leak, one of the most common and perplexing issues is a leak at the base. If you’ve ever noticed water pooling around the bottom of your toilet, you’re likely wondering why this is happening and what you can do to fix it. In this blog, we will delve into the possible causes of a toilet leaking at the base and provide a troubleshooting guide to help you identify and resolve the issue.

What Is Causing My Toilet To Leak From The Pipe?

There are various possibilities for why your toilet is leaking from the pipe:

Loose Connections

Pipe connections may become slack over time, resulting in leaks. Regular check-ups can assist in identifying and correcting such problems.

Wear and Tear

Pipes are subject to wear and tear. Regular use, combined with time, can cause pipe damage and leaks.

High Water Pressure

Excessive water pressure in your pipes might cause leaks. High pressure can cause failures and leaks by straining the joints and seals.

Clogged Pipes

When pipes become clogged, water can back up and spill out of other parts of the plumbing system.

Cracks in the Pipe

Physical damage to the pipes, such as cracks or holes, might result in leaks. These can happen due to shifting foundations, temperature fluctuations, or incorrect installation.

Faulty Seals

Over time, the seals that link the toilet tank to the bowl or the toilet to the floor might fail, resulting in leaks.

How to Fix a Toilet Leaking At The Base

1. Identify The Issue

First, make sure the water is coming from the toilet’s base. A leak from the tank might sometimes trickle down and appear to be at the bottom. Once you’ve determined the water is coming from the base, it’s time to go to work.

2. Gather Your Resources

Tools needed to repair a leaking toilet base: adjustable wrench, gloves, sponge, bucket, wax ring replacement, and optional new toilet bolts.

3. Turn Off The Water Supply

Make sure to turn off the water supply to the toilet before beginning the repair. The shut-off valve is usually positioned towards the toilet’s base on the wall. To halt the flow of water, turn the valve clockwise.

4. Remove The Toilet Tank And Bowl

To empty the tank and bowl of water, flush the toilet. After removing the toilet, mop up any remaining water with a sponge or cloth to avoid spillage.

5. Take Out the Toilet

Loosen and remove nuts on toilet bolts. Gently rock the toilet to break the seal, then lift it off the bolts. Use caution due to weight. Place the toilet on a plastic sheet or newspaper.

6. Get Ready For The New Wax Ring

Replace old wax rings & worn-out bolts when removing a toilet. Use a putty knife & gloves to remove old wax. Clean flange for new wax ring seal.

7. Put On The New Wax Ring

Align the new wax ring with the mounting bolts on the toilet flange. Check that it is centered above the hole.

8. Replace The Toilet

Lower the toilet carefully back over the mounting bolts, ensuring they come up through the holes in the toilet base. Apply consistent pressure to the toilet to compress the new wax ring and seal it.

9. Lock The Toilet

Replace the mounting bolt nuts, tightening them evenly. Excessive tightening may cause the toilet base to break. Once the bolts are secure, trim the tips off if they are too long, and then cap them.

10. Restart The Water Supply

Reconnect the water supply and let the tank fill. Flush the toilet several times and keep an eye out for leaks. Congratulations if there is no water surrounding the base! You’ve successfully repaired the leaky toilet base.

How Can I Tell If My Toilet Is Leaking From The Base?

A toilet leak from the base is normally easy to detect, but it may go unnoticed if it is gradual or minor. Here are a few symptoms that your toilet is leaking from the base:

Water Pooling Around The Base

This is the most visible indicator. If you notice water at the base of your toilet, it’s likely leaking from the bottom.

Damp Or Wet Floor Around The Toilet

Even if there is no pool of water, the floor around the toilet may be damp to the touch. This could be an indication of a slow leak from the foundation.

Sewage or Mold Smell

If you notice a bad odor around your toilet, it could result from a leak. Mold development and a musty odor can result from leaking water.

Loose Toilet Base

Does it feel like the toilet is swaying or rocking when you sit on it? This could signal that the base seal has failed, resulting in a leak.

Water Stains or Damage to the Ceiling Below

If you have a bathroom on an upper floor and notice water stains or damage on the room’s ceiling directly below, it could result from a leaking toilet.


Dealing with a toilet leak at the base can be a frustrating and inconvenient experience. However, armed with the knowledge provided in this troubleshooting guide, you now have the tools to identify and resolve the issue effectively. Remember to address the problem promptly to prevent further damage and unnecessary expenses.

At Craig’s Plumbing, we understand the importance of a well-functioning system and its impact on your daily life. Our team of experienced and skilled plumbers is dedicated to providing top-notch plumbing services, including toilet repairs and maintenance. With our expertise, we can help you tackle any toilet leak, no matter how complex. Call us now!