Sunday, January 11, 2015

How to DIY: The Toilet Edition, Part II

I know you're all dying to know how the Great Toilet Escapade ended.  Bated breath, tenterhooks, etc. As you may remember, we left off here:

Which basically just tells you three things:
a.) there is no longer a toilet in my bathroom
b.) I learned how to take selfies by watching my teenage daughter
c.) I have neither the time to be a good housekeeper nor the money to hire one.

But it doesn't tell you HOW I removed the toilet.  This post was going to be a step-by-step tutorial on that process, but...There are already plenty of those on the market.  Just Google "how to remove toilet. I'll wait.

What those tutorials lack, amidst all the chipper schematics and friendly voice-overs, is color commentary.  Maybe a dash of reality.  And that's where I come in.  Here are a few of the things I learned the hard way, not via internet, but by getting my nitrile gloves dirty, old school.  You're welcome.

Even if all the goldfish have died and the turtle HYPOTHETICALLY SPEAKING has moved on to greener ponds, you can still get your money's worth out of the aquarium vacuum by using it to get the last bit of water out of the tank:

(If I had a better rack, I'd include more gratuitous selfies to distract you from my deplorable housekeeping.)

Also: "righty-tighty, lefty-loosey" depends on which way you're facing the bolt.  BE THE BOLT.

On the base of your toilet are two bolts holding it to the floor, covered by friendly little white caps.  Be prepared, because when you remove those caps, you will come face-to-face with the Human Centipede of plumbing fixtures:

But that is nothing compared to what comes after actually pulling the toilet off those bolts, when you must walk through the valley of the shadow of wax ring:

Throughout the entire process, there will be Googling and YouTubing. Cursing and sweating.  Wailing and gnashing of teeth and maybe even rending of garments.  At some point, you will question the wisdom of having gotten a divorce, because you know that if you hadn't, you damn skippy wouldn't be removing your own toilet.

Then your phone will buzz, and it will be a Facebook notification that your ex just posted a pic of himself.  EVEN THOUGH YOU HAVE UNFOLLOWED HIM A DOZEN TIMES ALREADY.  He has his arm around his triathlete girlfriend who has been alive less years than you have been menstruating, I'm just sayin'.  You will attack the toilet with renewed vigor.

You might even take the worst, least-flattering selfie ever:
To remind yourself that beauty is only skin deep, or maybe to show your brother that you are in fact crying and coming down with a migraine because of this fucking toilet situation.

You will wonder if the gay community would be angry if you made your own series of "It Gets Better" videos, dealing with toilet removal and divorce and adolescence.

But if you persevere, you will eventually reach this place where you can triumphantly Craigslist your toilet and then leave it on the curb with the hardware in a festive holiday baggie just to brighten someone's day with both a free toilet AND a little better-late-than-never holiday cheer:

  And then you can celebrate by getting a quote to have someone remodel your bathroom.  Cheers!


  1. Thanks for the write up Erica, We've recently done a similar reno in our house. Its not easy but well worth it.
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