How to Install Tile around your Toilet

Re-tiling your bathroom is a great, cost-effective way to improve its look and feel. There is one serious area of complication standing in your way, however — the toilet. How do you manage this fixture that takes up space on the floor that you’re retiling?

It might be tempting to keep the toilet where it is and carefully cut tile to install around it. This isn’t a very good plan, however. Retiling can add as much is an inch to the level of a floor. According to Rebath and Kitchens of Arizona, your toilet will end up feeling unnaturally low.

What you need is to take a little more trouble — the toilet needs to come out as long as it takes to install your tiling. There is one part that won’t come out, however — the toilet flange (the top of the soil pipe that goes into the floor). You will need to learn how to cut tile to a perfect circle to manage that fixture.


An angle grinder — the tool you need

An angle grinder is a tool with a side-mounted grinding wheel. It can be a great instrument to shape objects through abrasion with. While you will probably find cheap, $50 angle grinders on the market, it’s important to go with a good, trustworthy brand. A grinding wheel spinning at high speeds is the last thing you want to see coming off.

Cut out the right shape

Before you cut a hole in your tile with an angle grinder, you need to create a cardboard template for it. Put a piece of cardboard right on the toilet flange, and trace out the size and shape. You can then cut it so that you have a circular piece of paper the exact, right size.

Applying angle grinder to tile

Once you have the template, you need to place it on exact spot on the tile where it will admit the flange, and then draw the shape on it with a marker pen. Then, you can use the angle grinder to gently wear material out of the outline. You’ll be able to knock the circle out with a few gentle taps of a hammer.

You’ll be able to place the tile around the flag as if it were a collar. Now, your bathroom should feature neat, well-done tiling.