Do you need a new toilet? The process can be confusing if you’ve never done it before. Choosing the suitable toilet rough-in can make a big difference in the installation.
If you want a toilet rough-in 11.5 inches in size, we’ll show you how to make the necessary adjustments. So, keep on reading!
To make a toilet rough-in 11.5 inches work, the simplest way is to use a flange extender. Keep reading to learn how this can be done using our detailed explanations.
What Is a Toilet Rough-in?
The toilet rough-in is the distance from the wall to the center of your drain.
To measure a toilet rough-in, start with a piece of masking tape or painter’s tape. Stick it on your wall, making sure that there’s enough space between the top of the tape and where you want to install your toilet.
You need to measure the distance correctly, so you know how much room you have to install a new toilet.
Note that your measurements will vary depending on which side of the room has more space. You want enough room for people sitting down to do their business comfortably. But, you don’t want too much space on one side because it will look strange in the room.
Toilet Rough-in Sizes
Toilet rough-ins are the minimum distance required by code between the center of the drain pipe and any wall. Rough-in sizes vary depending on your toilet’s size.
Toilets with a rough-in of 10 inches are used in smaller spaces, like half baths and powder rooms. You may also find them in older houses.
These toilets are great for water conservation since they use less than 2 gallons of water each time.
The most common choice for toilet rough-in is 12 inches, which is also the standard size. Because it works with all toilet brands, the most popular rough-in size for toilets is 12 inches (for a larger toilet, check out our guide on 14″ Rough In Toilets).
While most regular toilets can work with a 12-inch rough-in, it’s crucial to measure before buying a new one.
14-inch toilets are typically seen in older homes and households’ modest bathrooms. When you need to clean around or under the toilet, the 14″ rough-in size gives you more room to work.
What if the Toilet Rough-In Is 11.5 Inches?
You may be wondering what happens if your toilet rough-in is 11.5 inches. For example, let’s say that your existing toilet has a rough-in of 12 inches. You want to replace it with a new one with a rough-in of 11.5 inches. Well, this process is doable with a little effort.
You will need to prepare for some remodeling. The old plumbing lines need adjustments to fit into the new drain line going into the floor drain. If the lines are too short or long, it throws the installation off and you could end up with a flushing nightmare.
Adjustment for 11.5 Inches Toilet Rough-In
It’s possible to install toilets with 11.5 inches rough-in, and there are a few ways to make it work. One of the easiest ways to do it is by adding a flange extender to your existing floor. To add a flange extender:
- Remove the old wax ring from around your toilet base and clean out any leftovers with a damp rag or paper towel.
- Pull out all of the old screws because you need the holes for the new screws.
- Place the flange extender over the base to see how it fits. You may need to add spacers to make it flush all the way around. It should not be more than a quarter inch above or below the floor.
- If your flange extender has a rubber gasket, install it as is. For extenders without a rubber gasket, you need to use silicone caulk for a secure fit. Apply the caulk to the flange extender bottom and then screw it in place.
With the flange extender secured, you can install the new toilet.
Measuring and Installing a Toilet Rough-in
If you have an existing toilet in good working order, it’s worth taking a measurement from that toilet now so you can keep track of the difference between the old and new models.
However, if you’re installing a new toilet instead of replacing an old one or are unsure of how large your current model is, start by measuring your space with the tape measure to determine how much room is available for placement.
Tools to use in measuring a toilet rough-in
The tools you’ll need for this job are:
- tape measure
- plastic gloves.
Measuring the Toilet Rough-in
The next step is to measure the toilet rough-in. To do this, place a ruler or tape measure against any wall of your bathroom, making sure that it’s not touching any pipes or wires.
If there are no pipes or wires on this wall, you can use it as your reference point for measuring the toilet rough-in. If you have pipes and wires running along this wall, find another adjacent wall with nothing on it and use it as your reference point.
Now that we have our reference point set up let’s look at how to measure for a rough toilet.
Tools To Use in Installing a Toilet Rough-In
To install a toilet rough-in, you’ll need:
- A plumber’s tape measure
- An adjustable wrench
- A socket wrench
- Phillips screwdriver
To help with this task, you may also want to have on hand:
- Plastic putty knife for scraping and removing old wax from the flange.
- A plastic bucket or another container holds any water that drains during installation.
Installing the Toilet Rough-in
You will need to locate the wall studs and mark their positions on the floor before installing your new toilet flange. The center of this line should be one inch away from the finished wall edge and flush with it if possible.
Use a pencil to trace around your template onto the floor. Pierce through the surface with a hammer drill bit that’s large enough to fit your drill through later on. Be sure to use some backing, so your hammer drill doesn’t go through or too far into your subflooring or wall.
Using a mallet or similar tool, drive two screws through each hole to hold down any loose materials inside before installing anything else.
For Tank Cover:
Remove any existing hardware or screws from the toilet tank and set them aside for reinstallation afterward. Use a drill bit to drill holes for new mounting screws in their place.
Please make sure these holes are large enough for your hardware but not so big as to strip out when using them. Drive two screws through each hole, careful not to over-tighten them and break off the material around them.
We hope this blog post has helped you understand how to measure and install a toilet rough-in. It won’t be very clear at first, but it will get easier once you know how everything works together.
With so many options, make sure you do your homework before ending up with a toilet that doesn’t meet your needs. An alternative is installing a rough-in. It can also be installed without changing much in the room, making it less expensive than fully installing a new one.
You’ll also get some additional space when you replace the old fixture with a new one if you decide to do so. The most important thing is to ensure that the toilet’s rough-in size fits perfectly in the bathroom.