July 08, 2022

How To Replace a Toilet Valve

What You Need To Know Before Replacing A Toilet Valve

Over the course of the time you own or rent a home, it is likely you will need to replace a toilet valve. There are several reasons why such a replacement may be needed.

The most obvious reason for replacing a toilet valve is if there is a leak. Sometimes this happens without reason and other times it can happen if you turn the water off and on. Oftentimes, it’s been years since the valve has been operated and the seals inside lose their flexibility. Whenever you replace a toilet or the flushing mechanisms inside, it’s usually a good idea to replace the shutoff valve..since, over time the valve may become difficult or impossible to twist due to calcification inside. There are a few solutions in my video and blog that can help yMan turning off household water supplyou more easily remove the toilet valve and replace it.  I’ll cover the two most common installations and offer tips along the way.

Step One: Turning off The Water Supply 

Before you do anything, turn off the household water supply. Then, place a bowl underneath the valve and disconnect the water supply line that goes to the toilet. Any water still inside will be collected by the container. Once the water has drained out, go ahead and disconnect the line 

Step 2: The Two Most Common Installations

How to remove a soldered toilet valve?
In many cases, the valve is soldered onto a short stub of copper pipe protruding from the wall. 

Man using propane torch to heat toilet valve Using a propane torch, I heat the valve and the copper pipe as uniformly as possible so that when the solder softens, I can pull off the valve with a pair of pliers.

An important note: Take out the valve stem first since there are rubber “O” rings and washers inside that could melt with the heat from the propane torch.

Once the valve is removed, the goal is to get the pipe as clean and smooth as possible. With a damp rag, clean whatever solder remains while the pipe is still hot. To smooth out any remaining solder, wrap a strip of sandpaper around the pipe and run it over the surface until it feels flat. 

How to remove a compression fitting valve?Man using heat to loosen compression ring

Another common way of attaching a shutoff valve is through the use of a compression fitting. Removing this type of valve requires two wrenches. One is placed on the body of the valve, and the other on the compression nut. The idea is to hold the valve body in position while unscrewing the compression nut.  Once the nut is completely loose, the valve will slide free.

What’s left behind is a compression ring or ferrule that is attached to the pipe. You can either remove it with a compression ring removal tool, apply by applying heat with a propane torch and pull it off with a pair of pliers, or by cutting the pipe between the ferrule and the wall. If you choose the latter, just make sure that the remaining pipe is long enough to accept the new valve. 

Step 3: Installing The New Valve
Man using utility knife to utility knife to remove burrsBefore installing the new valve, make sure the pipe surface is as clean and smooth as possible. Use a utility knife or deburring tool to remove any burr on the inside of the pipe. This burr, if left intact, can cause water turbulence and create annoying noise inside the pipe. 

Typically, to install the new valve you could either solder one on or use a compression All I have to do is press it on by simply placing the valve on the head of the pipe and pushing.  The valve comes with a trim ring that gives the installation a finished look. 

Whether you have a leaking or frozen valve or one that’s outdated, you now know how to replace it. For more bathroom-related projects, visit tips for bathroom projects and upgrades

Posted in: News Projects
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