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Different Types of Seals for Toilets


Tired of cleaning up from a leaky toilet? Chances are that the gasket that forms a watertight seal between the toilet and flange in the floor has decayed. Fortunately, this is one of the easiest types of Houston toilet repair, and replacing your wax ring or gasket is a process that should take less than half an hour if you know what you are doing.

Wax Ring

As the name implies, a wax ring is simply a doughnut-shaped ring of wax. They cost just a few dollars, and once you set the toilet on top of the flange, the weight of the toilet will compress the wax and form a watertight toilet seal. If you need to reset the toilet, however, you will need to clean the old wax ring off and replace it. Basic wax rings work best if your flange sits at least 1/4-inch above the floor.

Wax Ring with Sleeve

Flanges that sit lower than 1/4-inch above the floor will need something a bit more substantial than a basic wax ring. A sleeved wax ring seal is adequate for flanges that sit 1/4-inch below to 1/4-inch above the floor.

Felt Wax Ring

While they are acceptable for both floor and wall installations, felt wax rings have most commonly been used for urinals and other wall-mounted Houston toilet repair projects. The felt prevents the wax from shifting around during and after installation.

Sponge Gasket

Like felt wax rings, sponge gaskets work best for wall applications. The name is misleading — many sponge gaskets are made from solid rubber or silicone, which will remain flexible for decades.

Waxless Gasket

Waxless or wax-free gaskets are also made from a durable material like rubber, but they include deep-seal flanges that make them perfect for floor installations. Better yet, you can reset a Houston toilet repair multiple times with the same waxless gasket. You probably will not need to reset the toilet very often in any event, but it is one fewer project you need to worry about if you need to replace the supply valve or flooring.

Waxless Foam Gasket

Waxless foam gaskets are made from a soft foam that has more flexibility than the rubber gaskets listed above, and they are quickly becoming the toilet seal of choice for every Houston plumber and homeowner. They can be stacked multiple times if your flange is set deep into the floor, and a single foam gasket works with flanges set anywhere from 3/8-inch below to 3/8-inch above the floor. Like other waxless gaskets, you can reuse foam gaskets time and again.

Does this type of project sound overwhelming or if you are interested in learning about toilet installations or Houston water heater repair? Check out our list of residential and commercial plumbing services, or speak with one of our experienced Houston plumbers at (713) 360-2185.

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