Simple DIY Projects: Replacing a Toilet Seat

Jerry WalchStarred Page By Jerry Walch, 12th Mar 2012 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/2iboql9v/
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>DIY>Plumbing

Doing it yourself is a great hobby for any guy or gal. Besides the satisfaction you will get from being able to say with pride, “I did it myself,” you will save some big bucks in the long run. Simple DIY Projects is aimed at those who have never done any DIY stuff before. These will be projects that a rank beginner can do and new skills in the process. Replacing a toilet seat is one of those simple projects.

Tools and supplies that you will need for this project.

Replacement toilet seat.
If your budget permits, buy a replacement seat the has metal hinges and brass or steel anchor bolts. The more inexpensive replacement seats have plastic hinges and nylon anchor bolts. The problem with seats having plastic hinges and nylon anchor bolts is that the nylon bolts are slippery and the seats have a tendency to slip from side to side. You can make them more secure using sleeves and foam tape, but you are better off buying one with metal hinges and brass or steel anchor bolts if your budget permits.
Tools and supplies.


  • Safety goggles
  • Slip-joint pliers
  • Battery powered drill/driver
  • Set of high-speed twist drill bits
  • 3/8-inch drive socket set with deep-well sockets
  • Screwdrivers
  • WD-40 penetrating oil

Removing the old toilet seat.

If the seat is held in place by brass or steel bolts.
In most cases the best tool to use to remove the nuts from steel or brass toilet hinge bolts are a 1/2-inch, deep-well socket and a 3/8-inch drive ratchet. The deep-well socket will fit down over the bolt extending beyond the nut. Hold the socket tightly over the nut with one hand and turn counter clockwise with the other hand.
How to remove nuts from corroded or rusted bolts.
If the bolt is badly corroded or rusted, give it a good blast with the WD-40 penetration oil, let set for a few minutes and then try removing the nut again. Sometimes a badly corroded brass bolt will snap right off and that is OK too because you will be using the new bolts that came with the replacement seat.
In the case of really stubborn nuts, drill into the bolt where the threads meet the nut. Beginning with a 1/16-inch, high-speed, drill bit, drill progressively larger hole in the bold to a depth of roughly 1/4-inches. A good progression of drill bit sizes are 1/16-inches, 1/8-inches, and 3/16-inches. When you reach 3/16-inches, try using the socket wrench again. The objective here is not to unscrew the nut off the bolt, but to snap the bolt off completely. If you still cannot break the bolt off, enlarge the hole further using increasingly larger diameter bits until the bolt weakens sufficiently to snap off.
If the old seat is held in place with nylon bolts and nuts.
Nylon nuts and bolts do not corrode or rust so you will be able to remove them easily with a pair of pliers. Just pry the hinge bolt cover up with a screwdriver and then hold the screw head with a straight-blade or Phillips head screwdriver as required.

Installing the new seat.

To install the new seat,just reverse the process. If the replacement seat has nylon bolts and nuts, make sure you install the plastic sleeves and the foam patches between the seat hinges and the toilet. If you replacement seat has nylon bolts and nuts but come without the plastic sleeves and foam patches, place pieces of double-sided carpet tape between the hinges and the toilet top. The carpet tape will help prevent the seat from shifting from side to side.

Do it yourself or have a professional do it?

By doing it yourself, you can save anywhere from $35 to $75 or more, depending on what a plumber charges for an hours labor. Replacing a toilet seat will take fifteen minutes or less, but professional plumbers have a minimum one hour labor charge.

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Tags

Brass Bolts, Diy, Diy Plumbing, Nylon Bolts, Replacing A Toilet Seat, Simple Projects, Steel Bolts, Toilet Seat, Wd-40

Meet the author

author avatar Jerry Walch
Jerry Walch is a 71 year old freelance writer for hire living in Colorado Springs, Colorado. He has been writing since the late 1970s, and writes for both the print and online media. He specializes in

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Comments

author avatar Buzz
13th Mar 2012 (#)

You're a treasure trove of information, Jerry. Thanks for sharing.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Thank you for reading and for the compliment, Buzz.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
13th Mar 2012 (#)

I just did this and know just how very helpful your tips are...great and very useful information, thank you Jerry...:0)

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author avatar Jerry Walch
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Thank you for reading and for commenting, Delicia.

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author avatar Denise O
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Jerry, another great DIY project you have shared with us. You are so right to recommend that we use metal hinges, we went the cheap way once, never to do it again. Great info as always. Thank you for sharing.:)

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author avatar Jerry Walch
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Thanks for reading and commenting, my friend. Yes, many people make that mistake. They purchase the cheaper seat with the plastic and nylon hinges and bolts because they think they are getting a good deal only to end up frustrated because they have to keep re-tightening the nuts every couple of days.

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author avatar Peter B. Giblett
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Certainly the greatest challenge is in removing the old rather than installing the new. One of the approaches I used was to cut the bolt off as close as I could to the nut. This way there was less screw thread to tackle.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
13th Mar 2012 (#)

I agree completely, Peter. Cutting the bolts off as close to the nuts works too, but my favorite method is to use a battery-powered impact wrench with a deep-well socket. An impact wrench spins those nuts off in seconds. I didn't mention that method in my article because it was meant for new DIYers and they most likely wouldn't have a powered impact wrench in their tool kit yet.

Thank you for reading and commenting.

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author avatar Tess Irons
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Thanks for writing this article, Jerry. I'm sure I can DIM (Do It Myself) this.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
13th Mar 2012 (#)

I'm sure that you can too, Tess.

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author avatar Jules Castillo
13th Mar 2012 (#)

Doing it your self and save.

got it from a from you Sir Jerry , thanks for all your helpful ideas

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author avatar Jerry Walch
13th Mar 2012 (#)

You are most welcome, Cowboy.

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author avatar Carol
14th Mar 2012 (#)

Thank you Jerry, another very useful article. Thank you for telling me about yourself on my racing article. What a brave man you are and such an inspiration to us all! xx

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author avatar Jerry Walch
14th Mar 2012 (#)

Thank you for reading and commenting, Carol. As for my being brave, as President Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, "The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." I have never given fear anyplace in my life. Today, at 68 years of age, I'm still as healthy as an Ox, except for a twinge of arthritis.

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author avatar D in The Darling
15th Mar 2012 (#)

You got no idea how much you're influencing me on this one.

Thanks for sharing Jerry!

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author avatar Jerry Walch
15th Mar 2012 (#)

My pleasure, D. Thanks for reading and for commenting.

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author avatar vpaulose
1st May 2012 (#)

My dear brother Jerry, thank you for pointing out what had happened in one of my articles"20 reasons for decline in reading." Unfortunately, I am not aware of these comments. They were not shown in the "Read your message also." I have no idea how it happened with so many dates in disorder. Please help me to find out such mistakes. Actually I was not writing much due to my illness. I want to write sold things. My articles will show them. dear brother, please guide me to do better here and in sites where we are together. You are an expert who can guide me. Please do help me survive. Thank you for this timely help. I have done what you have mentioned in the message. Please do give me hint that you have seen this. thank you.

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author avatar vpaulose
1st May 2012 (#)

Sorry, for the error above. I want to write solid things.

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author avatar EasyWriter
30th May 2012 (#)

Great tips. Thank you for sharing.

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author avatar Jerry Walch
30th May 2012 (#)

My pleasure, EasyWriter.

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