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Question DetailsAsked on 12/4/2013

what will plumber charge to install toilet in East Bay, California, including removing old one. Some floor sag.

Our home warranty sent 3 different plumbers to fix a clogged toilet. They have finally decided we need a new floor before they will install a new one because of sagging floor. First plumber they sent out said the floor did not need to be replaced. They were so rude and hated that we were on warranty they would not take the time to explain the problem except they couldn't do anything. So, I don't really know if a new toilet is needed, the floor is really bad, or what. They never augered when they lifted the toilet to replace the seal and I'm not clear why a new toilet would help since they replaced the assembly in the tank. All they said was, "Everybody would like a new toilet, lady, but that's up to the insurance." The insurance took their word and I was given $170 for a new toilet. I'll be sure to have that crew back to install it LOL! My basic question is if I have the floor inspected by my home insurance, how much is installation and removal of toilet? Thank you!

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Voted Best Answer

Pity you seem to be getting uncertain answers from the warranty company and plumber, but unfortunately that is not unusual.

A new toilet runs about $120-200 for normal run of the mill models, so the $170 they gave you puts you in the range for the toilet cost itself. Labor and small parts for removal of old one and placing the new one usually runs about $75-250 - typically around $125-150 except in very high or low priced areas.

Augering (usually called snaking) would be called for if you had a blockage causing toilet overflow, which was your problem. Changing the seal would be because you had a leak coming out under the toilet due to wax seal failure. Replacing parts in the toilet would be to solve a failure to flush, failure to refill the tank, or constant running problem. Clearly, plumber didn't know what the problem was here because it sounds like they changed the seal and replaced the workings, which normally would not solve the problem you had, but did not snake out the toilet ? In the vast majority of cases, just plungering the bowl would have solved a clogging problem, unless your tank was not filling or flushing properly. I have never seen a clogging problem that could not be solved quickly with plunging or pouring hot water down it, unless some foreign object that should not go in a toilet like a toy or feminine hygiene products was put down it.

The floor sag may be your biggest issue, and does not seem to be addressed by the insurance comapny - are they going to pay to have it repaired ? A noticeable (maybe 1/2 inch in the width of a bathroom) sag might just be due to old wood floor joists creeping and developing a small sag, but that would not be enough sag to prevent putting a new toilet in unless your house is well over a hundred years old, or built with substandard joists. The more likely cause of a dramatic sag is long-term pipe or toilet seal leakage, causing floor rot - which would require taking up part or all the bathroom floor and commonly some of the underlying ceiling, repairing or replacing joists and maybe beams, then replacing the sublfloor and flooring/ Typically a $500-1000 job if limited to just subfloor (plywood or particle board) rot right around the toilet, to from a couple of thousand to as much as $5000 plus in the rare severe cases where if it requires taking up entire bathroom floor and significant joist or beam replacement.

Inspection by your homeowners insurance conmpany, if that is what you meant, might be the WORST thing you could do. Unless you had significant one-time flooding from the blockage and need the flooded subfloor dried out and substantial downstairs ceiling repaired or such and the cost will be significantly more than your deductible, there is nothing your homeowners insurance will do (with almost all policies) for long-term decay of flooring due to a prolonged leak, so calling them out if that is not covered (read your policy about water damage) will only raise your rates without getting any benefit from it.

Sounds to me like you need to get back with the home warranty company to resolve this, and if you had flooding get the subfloor dried out and, by this time, probably treated for mold too. If your toilet is working okay and you have no leaks around the toilet, behind it, or downstairs then I would bank the $170 and leave things be if you did not have enough flooding to get significant water down into the subfloor.

Answered 6 years ago by LCD

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