Re: Toilet Odor (previously vacant house)
It is possible that the seal at the base of the toilet has failed, allowing odor and leakage. A new wax ring is easy to install.
Purchase a new wax ring with new hold down bolts. Add to this four 1/4" washers and four 1/4" nuts. If the hold down bolts on the existing toilet do not have caps, buy yourself a set of caps too. I personally like the kind that "snap" into place over a plastic washer as opposed to the kind that use a dab of caulk to hold them. You will also likely want some white or almond caulk, depending on the color of the toilet. I also like wax rings that have the built in flange, it helps to keep everything going exactly where it's supposed to.
1 - Turn off water supply, flush toilet, disconnect water supply line. Have a rag and catch basin handy for residual water in the line.
2 - Plunge the toilet bowl to remove as much water as possible.
3 - Remove the existing hold down nuts. What I like to do is to lift the toilet off and set it into a garbage bag, then lift the toilet over into the bathtub or shower and gently set it onto its back. This gives you access to the bottom to clean and prepare for the new wax seal.
4 - Once the toilet base is clean, stand the toilet up and lay it back down a few times to remove the water still in the goose neck, and dry the base off. The toilet is now ready to reset.
5 - Clean the toilet flange that is in the floor off. Remove as much of the old wax ring and debris as possible, finish by wiping with paper towels.
6 - Assess whether you need to change the hold down bolts, odds are you do. Good thing you picked up a new set. When you install the new bolts, slide the bolt into the retainer hole, then add a washer and tighten a nut down. This will hold the bolts perfectly straight and in place while you set the toilet. This is a much better method than relying on the typical plastic washer that comes with most hold down bolt kits.
7 - Place your new wax ring onto the prepared flange.
8 - Set the toilet in place by grabbing the toilet bowl just behind the toilet seat. Rest your elbows on your thighs and you can easily maneuver the toilet into place. Line up the bolts with the holes in the base of the toilet and gently set the toilet down, keeping it as level as possible and perpendicular to the wall. Gently shimmy the toilet in your hands to set it down into the wax ring.
9 - Once the toilet is fully resting on the floor, you can adjust its alignment with the floor/wall.
10 - Place the base disk for the bolt caps over the hold down bolts, followed by a washer and then the nut.
11 - Tighten the nuts just until the toilet no longer moves when you try to twist it. Vinyl floors are forgiving to over tightening the nuts, tile floors can break the toilet if over tightened. Use toilet shims if necessary to prevent rocking.
12 - Hook up your water supply, turn on the water, check for leaks both at the supply and around the base of the toilet.
13 - Many jurisdictions require caulking to be applied to the base of the toilet. I personally do not like the look of this, unless there is a substantial gap that needs to be covered. Functionally, if there is a leak, you will know it if there is no caulk.
I suffer from CDO ... Its like OCD, but in alphabetical order, LIKE IT SHOULD BE!!!