How to Move a Toilet Over a Few Inches

Toilet in bathroom

Not all homes come with a toilet in the perfect location. Some have it too close to the counter, too far from the wall, or otherwise mislocated. Moving a toilet — even just a few inches — can drastically improve the form and function of a bathroom.

Most bathrooms do not make the best use of their limited space. Relocating some of the primary elements of the bathroom can make a huge difference. Maybe you want to move your toilet because you are struggling to maximize space. Or perhaps the toilet isn’t quite centered on a wall. Or maybe the builder simply chose a terrible spot for it in the first place. Whatever the reason, there are several things to consider when deciding how to move a toilet.

If you’d like to move your toilet a few inches, we can help. Below, we’ve outlined everything you need to know about moving your toilet:

  • Important Considerations When Moving a Toilet
  • If Your Bathroom is On Top of a Concrete Slab
  • If You Have Space to Work Beneath the Bathroom

Important Considerations When Moving a Toilet

When moving a toilet, keep in mind that you are not just moving the object itself. You also may need to move the supply line and waste line.

If you only plan to move the toilet a couple of inches, there are some simple workarounds you can use. The water supply usually connects to the toilet by a flexible supply line, so you might be able to get away with simply installing a slightly longer supply line tube. This would keep you from having to reposition the water line access point.

The wastewater line moves whatever you flush to your septic tank or municipal wastewater system. There is usually a vertical wastewater pipe under the toilet that uses gravity to move wastewater away. For the wastewater line, an offset toilet flange will allow you to move the toilet a couple of inches in any direction without having to cut a new hole in the floor or reconstruct the wastewater pipe. However, with an offset flange, you may have an exposed area of the floor showing where the existing flange was installed.

If you move the toilet without accounting for these factors, the floor may look different or the existing hole may be exposed. Additionally, an offset flange may cause a stoppage as the water leaving the toilet will be diverted slightly.

The good news is that a new flexible supply line and offset toilet flange are both relatively easy to install and together the parts will cost you less than $20. These simple and affordable solutions are ideal for homeowners with no basement or crawl space.

If Your Bathroom is On Top of a Concrete Slab

If your bathroom is on top of a concrete slab, we have some bad news. To move the toilet more than just a couple of inches, you will have to demolish the concrete to access and relocate water and waste lines. Then you will have to rebuild the concrete foundation and replace the sub-flooring, flooring, and fixtures.

As you can imagine, this additional step adds considerably to the cost, fuss, and mess involved with your project. But if you are already planning to do a complete bathroom remodel, this is the best time to tackle this project as well. We do not recommend that the average homeowner try to tear up their concrete slab to move a toilet. This is a job for a trained and experienced professional.

If You Have Space to Work Beneath the Bathroom

With space beneath the bathroom to work, the possibilities for your remodeling project expand. If you have a basement or crawl space below a first-floor bathroom, moving the toilet more than a couple of inches means you will have to reconfigure the wastewater line and move the water line. If you are remodeling a second-floor bathroom, moving the toilet will likely require the demolition of first-floor ceilings and walls so you can move the water lines inside the structure of the house. Yes, this can also become messy, difficult, and costly. But it can be done.

Because of all the work involved, we recommend hiring a professional if you wish to move a toilet on a second floor or one located above a basement.

Toilet Installation Professionals

Mr. Rooter® Plumbing has the tools and skills you need to relocate your toilet the right way. Request an estimate today or call us. Your local Mr. Rooter will come check out your bathroom to give you an accurate price for moving or installing a toilet.