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Question DetailsAsked on 9/4/2013

What is a reasonable cost for installing a new floor flange and reseating a toilet?

My toilet was leaking around the base. The plumber said that a new floor flange had to be installed. Then the toilet was re-installed on the new floor flange.

I was billed $535. Is this considerd a a resonable charge. I believe it at least over $100 too much.



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4 Answers

Voted Best Answer

Sounds reasonable considering the concrete.

However replacing the flange yourself is an easy job.

I recently used the Culwell Flange to replace the flanges in all of my bathrooms.

It seals to the floor.

Has anyone used this flange?

I found it on Amazon, but they have a website

Answered 5 years ago by mandylynnp76


OK - are you talking a floor flange (a metal plate the toilet bolts down to) or the wax ring that acts as a gasket between the flange and the toilet ?

To replace the wax ring and reinstall the toilet would usually be about $100 - maybe $150 in large cities and high-cost areas - normally a minimum visit charge plus about $5 for the wax ring.

If the flange was corroded so bad it was not holding the mounting bolts, then the cost would depend on how much trouble it was to replace. If it turned right off, with or without the nipple (short piece of pipe it mounts to) then the cost would have been little more than just replacing the wax ring - maybe $10-20 more for the parts. However, if he had to open up the ceiling below or go into the basement or whatever and break it free from there, that would have been maybe an extra half hour to hour.

Not having seen what it took to fix it, and what pipes may have broken when he tried to break it free, I would be reluctant to bad-mouth the plumber, but normally replacing the flange (and wax ring) would be a $250-300, 2 hour range job, so yours is definitely over the norm, to say the least. Beyond that, one would have to know exactly what had to be done (or how long it took) to say if it was "fair" or not.

I presume in all this there was no drywall repair and painting involved in the $535 - if that was included to repair the hole he cut, then you are getting into the reasonable range - at least $400+.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD


The toilet and flange our mounted on a concrete foundation. Would this involve clearing concrete around the sewer pipe to possibly repair the pipe to accept a new floor flange?

Answered 7 years ago by Guest_9681878


OK - I totally spaced on the possibility of it being in a slab.

It definitely involved some concrete removal, in all likelihood - without knowing what he took out hard to tell, but if he had to cut through the concrete to remove the flange and the first piece of pipe then you are in the reasonable price range. If the flange was badly corroded by some leakage, then it is quite possible one of two things happened - the first piece of pipe below it was corrroded too so he replaced it as well, or if you sewer pipe is plastic a corroded flange can come off so hard that you can break the plastic pipe below it, so he might have had to dig out more than a little concrete to get room to cleanly cut that off and put on another piece of plastic pipe, then the nipple and flange. If he was working at this for 4 hours or so or you saw him mixing grout to repair the floor, that is probably what the case was.

This is one of those cases where at first blush the price seems too high by quite a bit, but if you look into it in depth there may be a perfectly legitimate explanation. Can't say more than that without pictures of what the situation was - unless he was in and out in an hour or two I would assume this was legit and curse your luck that it happened in a basement toilet.

Answered 7 years ago by LCD


Note on the Culwell flange being discussed - note I have NOT seen this specific brand, but similar to a lot of others like Oatey and such.

1) it does appear to seal to the flooring which some others do not do well, reducing or hopefully stopping the inflow of any water from the bathroom floor - toilet overflow, leaking tank, etc - but except with tile floors with base or bullnose usually that water will just leak down at the walls anyway, so not sure there is a lot of gain there.

2) their installation video and brochure say just slip it into the existing sewer pipe - saying nothing about cleaning/prepping the interior so the exterior gasket can seal to the pipe. This is important in case you get a backup inthe drain pipe, which would then try to flow past those gaskets. I would at least put silicone grease on the gasket to reducde the risk of tearing it on the inside of the riser pipe.

3) video shows them just pulling the existing toilet flange out - says nothing about it being glued in (in plastic pipe), leaded in (cast iron) or threaded in (brass, bronze, steel drain pipe), grouted in (cementatious pipe), tarred in (Orangeburg pipe), or corroded in place (any metallic flange) - which is commonly the problem in the first place - getting the flange out without breaking the riser pipe. Once you do that you could just put another regular flange on. Granted, most flanges have the same ID as the pipe (they fit over the outside of the riser pipe) so you could maybe leave the old one in place (if largely intact) and put the new flange over the top with silicone at the contact - but I would guess the seal would be bad and the new flange would likely stick up too high - at least if not recessed in the flooring.

4) this product may well work - but note from the video that like almost all other after-market "quickie" replacement flanges it looks like it reduces the flow diameter at the flange by probably 1/4-1/2" - so more likely to promote clogs, especially since the reduction appears from images I found to be a shelf or ledge, not even sloped inward.

However, is quicker than a replacement with original, especially if not accessible from below or the plumber does not have an internal pipe cutter for the type of pipe if the existing flange cannot be removed reasonably, which is the right way to do it.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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