How to Dispose of Old Toilets

There are various reasons you may feel the need to get rid of your toilet and get a new one. It might be that your old one has issues and doesn’t work as well as it used to, or maybe you’re remodeling your bathroom and want to replace your old toilet with a newer and more efficient one.

Whatever the reason, you will have to dispose of your old toilet when the new one has been fixed in. 

Ways to Dispose of Old Toilets

old toilet disposal

Just as there are various reasons you might need a new toilet, there are also a couple of ways to dispose of your old toilets.

1. By offering them for sale

2. Donating them to charities or organizations in need.

3. Recycling 

4. Curbside pickup

1. Sell Old Toilets

If you’re in a situation where your toilet is still functional and in good condition, the best way to get rid of it and still get some money off it would be by selling it. 

There are many sites on the internet where you can quickly sell items. An example is Craigslist. Take a good picture of the toilet, write a good description, and soon people will rush to buy it. This way, you would be disposing of it and making a profit.

2. Donate Them

Toilets that are still working fine can be donated to charities. Donating it to charity is your best bet if you do not want to sell it but still want it to go to good use and help others. Check with your local charity and ensure they accept toilets. If they do, clean it up and hand it to them. 

Before you consider giving it away, the old toilet must be in very good condition because charities might reject your donation. By donating your old toilets to charities, you can be sure they go to good use without worrying about recycling or dumping them in a landfill. 

You can give it to a friend that might need it for whatever reason. You can also put it up on Craigslist with the “free” option, meaning that potential buyers do not have to pay. They can take a look at it, and if they like it, they’ll contact you, and you can make arrangements from there.

SEE: Dumpster Sizes and Dimensions

3. Recycle Old Toilets

With items like toilets that have porcelain, you won’t be able to recycle by just dumping your toilet next to your bin and waiting for them to carry it off. Some places have a recycling program that accepts toilets. Check with your local solid waste provider to see if there’s a program available for you.

If they do, start preparing for it to be recycled by removing parts that don’t have porcelain. The parts without porcelain are recycled separately as they are made of other components. For example, cast iron plumbing fixtures can be recycled with scrap metal. While removing parts, check to see which parts you can keep in case of future use for toilet repair.

Most recycling facilities may charge a fee. So, compare a few options to ensure you pay what is within your range for your old toilets to be recycled.

The recycling organization you’ve made plans with will give you information on how to send the old toilets to them. Ensure you take it to the designated place and time to avoid confusion and disorganization.

4. Use Curbside Pickup

You have to verify that there’s a curbside pickup for toilets available in your area. Trash companies have varying policies on curbside pickup for toilets. Some will accept an old toilet left at the curbside without questions, while others will refuse to take it if you haven’t called ahead. So it’s best to call beforehand to be sure.

Also, call the company and ask if it is required to take out any special parts of the toilets or to leave them whole. Some might need you to take out the non-porcelain parts; others might require you to take out other parts, while others may let you leave the toilet and let them take care of it.

Place the toilet outside as required on the designated pick-up day. Be sure of the time and date to avoid making an unnecessary mistake.

If your area does not offer a curbside pickup, you might be asked to take your old toilet to the recycling or trash center. You can also do your research and take it to your local landfill.

You might want to see the Average Dumpster Rental cost before proceeding.

5. Rent a Dumpster

Renting a household dumpster is arguably your best option if the toilet removal is a part of a larger job that will generate plenty of renovation waste. Toilets, old dressers, and vanities may all fit in a roll-off dumpster without the inconvenience of waiting for a large collection day or hauling your belongings to the landfill. 

You may need a smaller 10-yard dumpster for a bathroom renovation, or a bigger 30-yard dumpster for a full master suite remodel. Remember that this may not be the best option if all you’re doing is replacing a single toilet.

How to Remove Old Toilets for Disposal

Remove Old Toilets for Disposal

Before utilizing any of the above disposal options, you must safely remove your old toilet.

1. Gather Your Equipment

Scrambling to find what you need while removing a toilet is the last thing you want to do. The equipment and materials you will need to complete the task are listed below: 

  • Bucket
  • Rubber gloves
  • Penetrating oil
  • Hacksaw and Wrench set
  • Screwdriver and Pliers
  • Sponge and Wire brush
  • Putty knife and Utility knife
  • Cleaning rags and junk towels.

2. Turn Off and Empty the Toilet’s Water

Find the water shut-off valve and turn it off before using the tools. The valve is frequently located beneath the toilet bowl. However, it can sometimes be fixed to the wall behind the bowl.

You might need to turn off the water in another part of your house if you can’t locate the shutoff valve. A cutoff valve may be found by following your pipes; close it to stop the water flow.

You must empty the toilet when the water has been turned off. The area you work in should be covered with extra rags or old towels because this phase can get a little dirty.

  • Keep flushing until the tank is completely empty.
  • Put your latex gloves on.
  • Remove any residual water from the tank and bowl with a sponge.
  • Repeat as necessary until the tank and dish are empty.

3. Remove the Toilet Tank from The Bowl

Removing the toilet tank from its position is easy, but you must first separate it from the water pipes. Use a wrench and pliers to separate the threaded pipe that serves as the intake supply line from the cutoff valve and the toilet tank.

You may start working on the tank after that is done.

Make sure you have some WD-40 and a wrench available. Some toilet tanks may be pretty heavy to lift on your own, so it may be beneficial to have a helper nearby.

  • Remove the screw nuts from the bolts holding the bowl and tank together. There are generally two or three located at the bottom of the tank. You might require some oil, like WD-40, to slightly loosen the nuts if the toilet has been used for some time.
  • The toilet tank should be lifted out of the bowl and kept aside.

4. Unscrew the Floor Fasteners

You can find the bolts on either side of the toilet. They might have a cap on top of them. Remove the cap, take a wrench and take the nuts off the bolts. If necessary, apply the oil here as well.

If penetrating oil doesn’t make the nuts move easily, you might have to use a hacksaw to remove the bolts underneath the nuts.

5. Remove the Toilet Bowl

Use a putty knife to remove the wax seal that holds the toilet’s base to the floor. When you’ve successfully broken the first part of the seal, straddle the toilet and carefully rock it from side to side to complete the job.

Once the toilet bowl seal has been entirely broken, carefully lift it above the floor bolts and remove it from the bathroom.

Tips and Precautions

1. Instead of throwing your old toilets out, you can turn them into something else, such as a decorative planter. You can get creative with your ideas.

2. Be careful when disassembling your toilet to avoid injury. Some parts are sharp.

3. Do not dispose of your toilets in an area not intended for waste disposal. If caught, this can lead to a serious fine.

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