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I just installed new floor in my bathroom. I'm getting ready to install the new toilet, but I think I might have got some bad advice on how to handle the flange.

Currently I have a metal/PVC flange that's slightly bent in the back, but otherwise okay. I did not floor under the flange per the advice I received, so the flange is just floating. The top of the flange is between 1/4" and 1/2" above the finished floor. The flange looks like it would rest on the finished floor had I installed floor under it. It looks like the existing flange is glued to the outside the pipe.

Do I need to remove the flange? I think I could just shim under it to support it, but there isn't a lot of room. I could replace the flange, but that's a whole thing, and I'd still need to shim it since the floor doesn't come under the existing flange.

How would you recommend I solve this problem?

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  • What is your concern? The flange is to hold the pipe securely to the toilet thus preventing a leak. The wax seal, seals to the toilet primarily and a bit squishes out to the flange but the flange Is for anchoring the seal not the seal itself. If exposed to urine water these cheap flanges would not last very long at all.
    – Ed Beal
    Jan 14 at 17:54
  • @EdBeal thanks for the input. I was under the impression that the flange would make contact with the toilet or that the toilet would push down on the flange if the flange wasn't supported. So the flange is just a way to secure the toilet so that the wax can make a good seal? If that's the case it sounds like this flange will be okay. Jan 14 at 18:29
  • Thanks for the images, breakfast interrupted.
    – Alaska Man
    Jan 14 at 21:41
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Morphed into an answer. Patric : The bolt holes are 180 or directly across from each other you will notice the flange can be turned (at least when new) always use brass hardware.

steel will corrode and I have seen people break expensive toilets trying to get rusted bolts out. The light weight flange is strong enough to keep the pvc pipe in line with the toilet.

Old cast rings were thick and when replaced the new part goes inside the pipe and has some movement to align with the toilet (the style I use).

So as I have tried to convey, The flange is to hold the pipe securely to the toilet thus preventing a leak. The wax seal, seals to the toilet primarily and a bit squishes out to the flange but enough to block sewer gas. the flange Is for anchoring the seal not the seal itself. If exposed to urine water these cheap flanges would not last very long at all. I have seen cases where a flange was two low because of tile added. The old cast flange was still there but they used 2 wax rings to get it to seal and it worked for many years from what I could tell. The avocado tile was a 70’s thing.

So I would not worry about a small dent just pre set the toilet and make sure the screw holes line up, squish the seal into the toilet but at the edges of the wax leave the center high, wipe the pipe and set the toilet snug the screws don’t over tighten or the toilet could crack and your done.

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  • "don’t over tighten or the toilet could crack and your" SOL. With the flange that high you may need to use a thin wax ring or explore some of the new wax-less options. If your toilet does not sit flat or rocks they make toilet wedges to address that issue if it is not significant. diy.stackexchange.com/questions/2233/…
    – Alaska Man
    Jan 14 at 20:48
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Just wanted to clear up some points regarding flange orientation:

-In the United States (California) the reason to have the flange so that it's not in a recess is to prevent "concealed fouling".

-Further, the toilet flange is not meant to provide structural support the toilet. The flange should be installed firmly to the floor with corrosion resistant screws

The toilet flange should be above the finished floor and supported from the underside. It appears it is above the finished floor ,but not supported.

The best way to support the flange is to make up a small batch of floor leveler and pour it into the floor depression until its level with the existing floor.

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  • There may be, probably is, a gap of some size between sub-floor and pipe.
    – Alaska Man
    Jan 14 at 21:40
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    Flanges provide anchoring upward. I seen no reason to support it from below. If anything, I'd add screws anchoring the flange down.
    – isherwood
    Jan 14 at 21:51
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    Also, you do not want to fill the void where the flange bolt needs to be inserted.
    – Alaska Man
    Jan 14 at 21:53
  • I'm positive any plumbers in the audience will confirm all of my statements.
    – ojait
    Jan 15 at 1:02
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    Not supporting the flange underneath will stress the waste pipe from the toilet and persons additional weight
    – ojait
    Jan 15 at 1:05

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