Is it considered a good idea to seal around the base of a toilet?
If so, what would you use? Silicon caulk? Plumbers putty?
The advantage to sealing is that it would keep water out and maybe
make the toilet base easier to clean around and be more sanitary. A
potential disadvantage is that you might not notice a leak around the
wax ring if the base is sealed. I was thinking of sealing all but a
small portion of the circumference as a compromise that would still
alert me to a leak but that would still mostly seal the space between
the toilet base and the tile and grout lines.
We have had seals replaced in both baths, which have terrazzo floor.
Both times the plumber used grout, not caulk. I suspect it is to give a
firmer support to the toilet. It had grout previous to the repairs, as
well. It isn't water-tight, so a leak will be evident.
Around here, the usual custom with grout or caulk is to leave an inch or
two in the back open, to give water a quick and easy way out, that will
be noticed before it rots the floor, but still present a 'finished' look
to the casual observer.
Bingo!! That's what I was going to post. I have personally had the seal
leak for me on two occassions. Had that joint have been caulked I'd have a
floor and a joist rotted out. BTW, it can happen fast. I had a storm blow
off a shingle this winter. When I discovered it there were four sheets of
decking rotten. C & E
Aside from hiding leaks and the cheesy look, there's another
disadvantage: It makes it harder to change out toilets in the
future. It can be hard to predict how any goop/caulk is going to
stick to, or even possibly damage or discolor a floor.
The only time I've ever caulked a toilet was when the base was so badly
warped there was a 1/4" gap in the front. I didn't want it to turn into
roach central, so I shimmed the toilet so it would not rock, and then
caulked it. Tacky, but it ended up looking and working just fine.
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