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Should My Toilet be Replaced?

While many toilet issues can be repaired by a licensed plumber, some indicate that your toilet needs to be replaced instead of repaired. If you’re experiencing any of these problems, you should replace your toilet right away!


While surface scratches are cosmetic in nature, they do make it difficult to get your toilet clean. The result may be an unhygienic toilet in your home bathroom that children and other family members are using. Also, deep scratches can turn into little cracks later on.

Cracks of any sort compromise the functionality of your toilet, putting your home at risk for water damage. Visible cracks indicate that old age or damage has taken its toll on the toilet and can hint at internal cracking as well. Unseen cracks can cause leaking around the toilet and into flooring as well as nearby walls.

Mineral build ups are another form of damage that may result in a toilet needing to be replaced. This is especially common in homes that have hard water because the higher mineral content can wreak havoc on small components like water inlet holes. Regular cleaning can help stave off these types of issues, but over time calcification, lime scale accumulation, and rust can irreversibly block effective water flow even with proper cleaning.


If your toilet seems wobbly, this is an indication that serious damage may be occurring. Wobbling is usually the result of a toilet sitting in a warped or uneven floor as a result of underlying water damage. Call a local plumber immediately if you see water dripping or pooling or you notice soft flooring, a wobbling toilet, or a musty smell. A leaking toilet can flood a bathroom and any rooms underneath the bathroom (basements, living rooms, kitchens, bedrooms, and laundry rooms) rapidly.

Performance Issues

A toilet that clogs frequently may need to be replaced, especially if the clogging requires the services of a local plumber. While toilets can (and do) clog occasionally, these clogs should be easily cleared with a plunger and only result after a large amount of waste is flushed down. Toilets that clog even when little or no paper is used or that require extensive snaking to remove the clog are likely suffering from serious problems. Both regular and low flow toilets can have issues with flushing, but they should never become routine. If you need to flush multiple times while using the toilet or plunge/snake it more than once a week, you should consider replacing the toilet.

Similarly, if you’re experiencing water issues when flushing that aren’t remedied by replacing the flusher mechanism itself, you may need to replace your toilet. Water may not be entering your toilet correctly or may not be flowing properly through the unit as a result of faulty mechanics.

Money Pit

Toilet repair costs can add up quickly! If you find that you’re calling a professional plumber to come out and fix your toilet time after time, replacing the unit will likely save you a lot of money in the long run. While you’re at it, you can always opt for a low-flow toilet to save on water costs as well. The result will be a more cost-efficient solution for your home.

Additional resources:
How to Unclog a Toilet
Cost of Replacing a Toilet
Stubborn Toilet Clogs
My Toilet Keeps Running
How Much Is It for a Plumber to Replace a Toilet?
The Most Common Toilet Problems