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Are you looking to sit on a new throne? Who could blame you? Perhaps your old toilet has seen better days, or you’ve been enticed by a model with all the modern bells and whistles. It might be cracked and leaking, or a new one is the perfect match for your bathroom renovations plans. Whatever the reason, if you’re even dreaming of installing it yourself, there’s something you need to know all about: measuring a toilet rough-in.

But first, a warning. Did you know that most plumbing work cannot be done by anyone except a licensed plumber? That goes for just about everything from the water main back to the sewer connection point, including all pipework and toilet, shower and sink installations.

That being said, there’s nothing stopping you from measuring and knowing the toilet rough in dimensions – because it’s crucial to match the new toilet you’ve got your eye on with the space it will be occupying under your roof. And it’s a completely separate issue than the other measurements you’ll be looking at as you browse those whizz-bang new toilets, including seat height, bowl shape and toilet width.

What is a toilet rough-in, anyway?

Briefly, the rough-in dimensions refer specifically to the space between the back of the toilet and the wall and the precise centre-point of the waste wipe. Across Australia, the accepted standard S-Trap distance is 140mm, but it’s not uncommon to find dimensions of up to 180mm – and even as much as 240mm in some cases.

As for how to measure a toilet rough in for your precise toilet and space, there are 4 things you need to know first:

1. The distance from the toilet flange (the fitting securing the toilet to the waste pipe) to the wall.

  • Tip: Make sure you take the measurement from the finished wall, so if it’s just a stud at the moment, factor in the eventual wall thickness.

2. The left-right clearance for the toilet.

  • Tip: If you’re not sure, make it at least 380mm side-to-side to any adjacent fixture, feature or wall.

3. The necessary/desired space in front of the toilet.

  • Tip: Aim for about 530mm at least, especially if that gap is to the door that needs to easily open and close. But basically, you just need to satisfy any guideline requirements and make it comfortable for the toilet user.

4. The location of the water supply line.

  • Tip: In most cases, aim for 152mm from the very centre of the flange and 177mm above the finished floor. This will accommodate most toilets, but make sure you check with a plumber.

At this point, it’s crucial to stress that all of these measurements for your new toilet need to be taken precisely – or you risk setting the toilet just a millimetre or two too close to the wall, and it simply won’t fit.

How to measure a toilet rough-in

So to sum it all up, let’s get to a precise answer to that original question about measuring a toilet rough-in. How’s it done, in a nutshell?:

It’s just a matter of precisely measuring the distance from the wall behind the toilet to the very centre of the waste point. With that measurement, you’ll know exactly what clearance you need for the toilet you desire.

Get fast, local help for your toilet installation

How are you feeling about your toilet rough-in knowledge? Don’t forget, the installation itself will require a licensed local plumber – and there’s none better than the toilet repair and installation plumbers at Brisbane Plumbing & Drainage. We treat every toilet and bathroom like it’s our own – and we’ll never leave a job before we’re absolutely sure everything has been done exactly right.

For all of your household and bathroom plumbing, including fast & affordable toilet installations, get in touch with Brisbane’s best local team of fully-qualified plumbing experts at Brisbane Plumbing & Drainage today.