Is my toilet leaking or do my boys just have REALLY bad aim? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 27 Old 04-11-2009, 11:55 AM - Thread Starter
 
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OK, this might seem like a straightforward "duh!" kind of question. It seems like my toilet base is leaking, down where it meets the floor. There's a seal or something there, right? I keep cleaning up urine and when I go back in, there's more. The only thing that has me thinking it might be bad aim rather than a leaky seal (and pardon the grossness) is that is seems to be pure dark yellow urine. If it was leaking from the toilet, wouldn't it be someone diluted? Is there a way to tell? I don't want to call a plumber if one of my boys, for reasons unknown to God or man, somehow managed to aim the stream at the base and that's what's leaking out.

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#2 of 27 Old 04-11-2009, 12:25 PM
 
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Yes there's a seal, a ring of some sort, ours leaks some now. The dark color could be from diluted stool if it is coming from toilet waste. But if it seems to be just urine then yeah that's a direct hit from your boys, not from the toilet.

I expect having the seal replaced will cost us a couple hundred so we have to put it off, if it's bad aim consider yourself lucky.
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#3 of 27 Old 04-11-2009, 01:15 PM
 
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This can be a VERY easy fix if you do it now!

First, clean around the toilet on the floor. Flush and check to see if you can see it seeping. You may have to flush a couple of times and watch for a few minutes. You will most likely see it coming out (it's dark yellow, urine-looking bc the seal is yellow and the water is going through it).

Line up the help of one really strong friend, and go to a home improvement place. Buy a $6 wax ring. Pray the subfloor isn't damaged (if you leave it to leak too long, you'll have to cut out the floor!!!) We've done this a few times (once bc of the leak; once bc the big, strong friend plopped down and broke the bolts; once bc DH put too many shims in; once bc the floor was unstable and we had to buy a stablizing plate -- it's really a very simple fix if you catch it early )

Here's one of the websites I have bookmarked:
http://www.toiletology.com/wax-ring.shtml

Seriously, took us first-timers an hour to change the seal. We got quicker after that. Heck, I bet our time is down to 20 mins now
Any plumber that charges over $60 (time + part) is ripping you off!

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#4 of 27 Old 04-11-2009, 08:09 PM
 
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Agree with PP. If it is just the wax ring it is a pretty inexpensive fix, even if you hire a plumber (and then at least you don't have to worry about hefting a heavy toilet or cracking it.....).
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#5 of 27 Old 04-11-2009, 10:32 PM
 
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I get this, and I JUST had the seal changed for another reason, so I know it's not the seal. L sits to pee, but he doesn't always get his penis tucked into the bowl, so it goes out under the seat, and then dribbles down the bowl onto the floor around the base. Yuck.

Good luck!
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#6 of 27 Old 04-12-2009, 11:07 AM
 
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You can put food coloring into the toilet to check for a leak.

As others have said, the wax seal is a DIY.
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#7 of 27 Old 04-12-2009, 11:51 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm pretty sure it's a combination of easily distracted boys and the toilet brush caddy being knocked over but we're going away for the night so will try the food coloring thing to be sure. Thanks for all the help!

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#8 of 27 Old 04-13-2009, 09:33 AM
 
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We have the same issue here (though ours is a marine toilet, totally different system). I am slowly determining it's a little bit of both.
DS waits until the last minute to pee and then as he's getting himself situated he starts peeing before he's totally on aim (and is a 4 year old ever really totally on aim) And DH may hate me for this, but marine toilets are short compared to household ones, and for him I think there is a splash back issue b/c the pee has such a long way down to travel.

YUCK.

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#9 of 27 Old 04-13-2009, 10:53 AM
 
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ALL boys miss. It not bad aim, it's just they all do it. Even my 38 year old DH misses sometimes. The toilet is not leaking. You would have only water and no pee then. It's just boys missing. Every house with boys in it has pee around the base of the toilet. Every single one. I use a steam cleaner to get rid of it and it does great because it gets what I can't see or smell or reach. Just blast the heck out of it.

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#10 of 27 Old 04-13-2009, 11:02 AM
 
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My toilet leaked when my sewer was kinda backing up. matter of fact i didnt know anything was wrong with the pipes until my toilet started leaking. If i was draining the bathtub and flushed at the same time it would leak back up into the floor. it smelled like urine and was really gross. ALso it would do it if i was running the washing machine and soap suds would go all over the floor by the toilet. good luck!

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#11 of 27 Old 04-13-2009, 12:58 PM
 
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When DH misses, it's dark urine colored and stinky.

Our wax seal DID leak earlier this year and it was just plain water, that's how I knew the difference.
I agree with the PP's it's a pretty easy fix (if the floor is good) if you have someone who can lift the toilet. We got the 20 year guarantee seal and it cost about $19, hope it lasts the whole 20 years because I expect to move before that long! hehehe
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#12 of 27 Old 04-13-2009, 05:19 PM
 
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I have wondered this for years now!

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#13 of 27 Old 04-13-2009, 07:25 PM
 
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I have wondered this for years now!
This is OT......

But why is it so hard for boys to pee w/o creating a mess? (I'm sure this question has been asked for hundreds of years).

At my gramma's house, there is always yellow lines of grossness visibly running down the front of the toilet--top to bottom--because of her husband. Dried and thick yellow lines of pee. That's just after one day. I always freak out when dd goes in there. *shudder*

At my house, when dd's dad comes over, my foot always gets wet when I step near the toilet : I used to think the toilet must be leaking. Nope. It's only wet when dd's dad is there.

My male cousins always had the bathroom destroyed. And we babysat a little boy, who not only "missed", but litterally hosed the bathroom down--in the heat vents and all.

Aside from missing completely, why don't most boys at least wipe (or dab) with toilet paper before stepping away from the toilet? (I think that's what dd's dad does--he steps away from toilet and drips and makes messes).

What is so hard about boys peeing w/o making a mess? (Little boys should be excused, of course--but older/grown men? I just don't get it).

Sorry for the OT jibber jabber. Things I've always wondered but never really talked about. *shrugs*
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#14 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 02:40 AM
 
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This is OT......

But why is it so hard for boys to pee w/o creating a mess? (I'm sure this question has been asked for hundreds of years).
.....


Sorry to continue the OT, but jeez this is one thing that just really baffles me and ticks me off. They just need to sit down when they pee. Problem solved.

And OP, my vote is for bad aim.
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#15 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 11:37 AM
 
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Yep, it's pretty universal. I used to clean houses when I was in college, for spending money, and EVERY home with a man or boy living there had pee around the toilet. Every one. It's so gross. Boys can just be really gross about that. I think that their "stream" isn't always dependably straight.

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#16 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 01:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I can't speak for my husband, but my boys seem to view peeing as some sort of sport. They like to start and stop the stream, pee in tandem and "cross the streams" a la Ghostbusters, they have conversations and turn their entire bodies and end up hitting the wall. It's a little maddening.

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#17 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 02:21 PM
 
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HAHAHA!

Yes, boys are quite fascinated with their, um, bodily abilities.

Even if they weren't playing, I asked dh about this because this thread got me thinking. He said sometimes you just can't help it and the stream has a mind of its own. So there you go. That's why bathrooms that boys use are just, well, dirtier.

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#18 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 03:55 PM
 
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HAHAHA!

Yes, boys are quite fascinated with their, um, bodily abilities.

Even if they weren't playing, I asked dh about this because this thread got me thinking. He said sometimes you just can't help it and the stream has a mind of its own. So there you go. That's why bathrooms that boys use are just, well, dirtier.
Yeah but then why can't they wipe up after themselves? They obviously know when the flow is haywire and they've missed the bowl. My DH is certainly old enough to do so, and so is my DS. Why does it have to be left for me to deal with when it's dried up and making the grout smelly? GRRRR.
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#19 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 04:23 PM
 
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Maybe I should thank my MIL for teaching DH to urinate sitting down when at home. I mean, how hard is it to sit and tuck it in?

No mess and you never have to deal with someone leaving the seat up!

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#20 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 04:54 PM
 
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Yeah but then why can't they wipe up after themselves? They obviously know when the flow is haywire and they've missed the bowl. My DH is certainly old enough to do so, and so is my DS. Why does it have to be left for me to deal with when it's dried up and making the grout smelly? GRRRR.
I know. I mean I DON"T know why... but I know what you mean. We are all in the same stinky boat when it comes to cleaning.

I just keep some wipes in the bathroom and wipe up around there every now and then. And the steam cleaner works great, too. Just a part of living with men and boys...

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#21 of 27 Old 04-14-2009, 10:11 PM
 
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Yeah but then why can't they wipe up after themselves? They obviously know when the flow is haywire and they've missed the bowl. My DH is certainly old enough to do so, and so is my DS. Why does it have to be left for me to deal with when it's dried up and making the grout smelly? GRRRR.
They can and my older son does (the youngest is not potty trained yet). My husband finally started wiping up after himself when I expressed my complete anger at him leaving his PEE for me to clean up! Also when the oldest started putting his hands all over the toilet at about age 1 I pointed out the complete grossness of the uncleaned up pee. I have to say that my DH didn't get it at all when I was so angry about it. His mom just alway cleaned it up I guess and that was the way it was. I started going to my husband and telling him when there was pee on the toilet after he'd used it (I knew it wasn't mine and the baby was still in diapers). He HATED it but got the point.

They may not be able to help the drips but they are capable of behaving like civilized house-broken humans.

My sons will both clean up pee after themselves. My friend's son and husband also wipe up after themselves.
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#22 of 27 Old 04-15-2009, 03:12 AM
 
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They can and my older son does (the youngest is not potty trained yet). My husband finally started wiping up after himself when I expressed my complete anger at him leaving his PEE for me to clean up! Also when the oldest started putting his hands all over the toilet at about age 1 I pointed out the complete grossness of the uncleaned up pee. I have to say that my DH didn't get it at all when I was so angry about it. His mom just alway cleaned it up I guess and that was the way it was. I started going to my husband and telling him when there was pee on the toilet after he'd used it (I knew it wasn't mine and the baby was still in diapers). He HATED it but got the point.

They may not be able to help the drips but they are capable of behaving like civilized house-broken humans.

My sons will both clean up pee after themselves. My friend's son and husband also wipe up after themselves.
At the bolded part.

See now? If all the mothers of boys would follow your lead, women wouldn't be on a message board complaining about boys/men not being house-broken humans.

(NOT pointing fingers or insulting anyone! Just saying in general....all that PC stuff, k? )
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#23 of 27 Old 04-15-2009, 03:52 AM
 
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Maybe I should thank my MIL for teaching DH to urinate sitting down when at home. I mean, how hard is it to sit and tuck it in?

No mess and you never have to deal with someone leaving the seat up!
Wow, yes, go thank her! Now!

And yeah, I wish my DP would learn to clean up if he makes drips, whether it be PEE around the toilet or when he gets a cup of coffee or a glass of coke from the kitchen and spills it all over the floor :
Spills happen to everyone (some more than others, but ok). Cleaning them also happens. BY ME. :

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#24 of 27 Old 04-15-2009, 10:54 AM
 
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I guess I'm lucky DH sits to pee. Our toilet stays pretty clean.

He used to be a janitor, so perhaps if he does miss he cleans up after.

I hope it is your boys just missing and not a toilet leak.
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#25 of 27 Old 04-15-2009, 11:06 PM
 
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Maybe I should thank my MIL for teaching DH to urinate sitting down when at home. I mean, how hard is it to sit and tuck it in?

No mess and you never have to deal with someone leaving the seat up!
I have to say that in recent years DH has started sitting down at night and that has helped a lot. I guess it was hard to aim half asleep or something, and turning on the lights so he could see what he was doing woke him up all the way and then he couldn't get back to sleep. Now he sits and everyone is happier for it.

When we remodeled the main bathroom, we got one of those one-piece toilets so stuff can't flow under the tank, but then it has a self-lowering seat (can't slam down) that is a lot harder to clean than a regular seat. I also wish I'd gotten a skirted toilet where the pipes/coils on the bottom were covered so I didn't have to wipe those, just a flat smooth surface. I will do that next time - they are worth the extra money IMO.
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#26 of 27 Old 04-20-2009, 11:35 AM
 
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Well, thanks to the advice on here we looked up how and tried to fix it ourselves...disaster. The wax ring did not create a seal, the water leaked all over the floor when we put it back together. The ring kept falling off the bottom of the toilet, we did end up getting it lined up but it seems it didn't work. Now rather than a slightly leaking toilet we have one that doesn't work at all. And yes plumbers will charge way over $60, heck even to come out they charge $100 as a base. We'll have to give it another shot with another kind of ring tomorrow night or something. Luckily we have 2 bathrooms, though going to the other end of the house 4x a night won't be pleasant for me (pregnant, baby dropped last week).

Sorry for my foul mood, I'm very frustrated.
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#27 of 27 Old 04-20-2009, 11:37 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Oh my goodness, I am so, so sorry. That sounds incredibly frustrating.

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