Ask the experts: Should I fit the toilet before or after tiling the floor?

Unless you’re a dab hand at installation, chances are you’ll have plenty of questions when it comes planning your new bathroom.

Unlike a bedroom or living room refurbishment, you will need to hire a tradesperson to fit many of the items you buy for your bathroom and that’s when it pays to have a basic knowledge of the job in hand.

MyBuilder.com is a fantastic resource, where you can ask experts in the trade questions about your bathroom project. And, to help you on your way, we’ve taken some of the most commonly asked questions and provided some expert answers for you.

As part of our series of “ask the experts” blog posts, we’ll be answering the question “Should I fit the toilet before or after tiling the floor?”.


Should I fit the toilet before or after tiling the floor?

The bathroom fitters are unanimous—if you’re looking for a high quality finish, with a better seal against water damage, then always tile the floor first. It means tiles don’t have to be cut to awkward shapes to fit, and also means there is a layer of tile under the toilet that will protect the floor from water should the sealant fail.

DJ Property Trades say: “I always refit toilets and washbasins after I tile the floor for 3 reasons: 1. The floor will be sealed a lot better with the tiles being laid under the toilet. 2. It is also easier to do this rather than trying to cut tiles around the toilet. 3. It creates a much better looking finish.”

Tile your floor before fitting your toilet


Toilet options

Now you know how to prepare your floor before installation, you may wish to consider which type of toilet you’ll go for.

If you haven’t yet researched it, there are a number of toilet options you could choose:

Close coupled toilet

By far and away the most common type of toilet on the market. “Close coupled” means the pan and cistern are closely coupled together to form a single unit. There are further options, including a fully shrouded design with all parts concealed for easier cleaning.

Close coupled toilet

Back to wall toilet

A back to wall toilet can be used in one of two ways:

Positioned against a false wall with the cistern concealed behind it OR Combined with a furniture unit which contains the concealed cistern

Either way, it is a highly contemporary way to keep your toilet looking neat and seamlessly coordinating with the rest of your bathroom design. It also makes cleaning easier.

Back to wall toilet

Wall hung toilet

A great choice for designer bathrooms, a wall hung toilet appears to float above the floor for minimalist style. To achieve this, you’ll need to combine with a cavity wall space where a cistern and mounting frame will be housed. The advantages being that your floor space is kept free and it looks incredible.

Wall hung toilet

High level toilets

For more traditional bathrooms, a high level toilet will maintain the classical look of your décor. With this design, the cistern is attached to the wall, high above the toilet. A flush pipe connects the cistern and pan, whilst a pull chain is used to operate the flush.

High level toilet


Tiling resources

Before getting your floor tiled, you may want to familiarise yourself with the amount of work that goes into this type of project.

Click on the links below to discover more about tiling, including:

Tiling a bathroom


Still need your questions answered?

Got more questions around bathroom installation? Head over to MyBuilder where you can ask experts in the trade.

If this blog post has provided the answers you need to continue your bathroom project, why not post your job on MyBuilder.com and start collecting quotes today?