How To Cut Tile Around Toilet

How To Cut Tile Around Toilet
  • Author: Amanda Arnold
  • Posted On: May 13, 2022
  • Updated On: August 21, 2023

When utilizing the correct instruments, such as a manual cutter or an electric tile saw with a good quality diamond blade, cutting straight tile lines is surprisingly simple to master. However, cutting curves, such as tiles around a toilet, gets much more complicated.

You’ll almost certainly need to create curved cuts around the toilet when tiling a bathroom. Most individuals become perplexed at this point and begin scratching their heads. But there’s no need to scratch your heads for too long. This post will help you for cutting tile around a toilet effortlessly!

Do You Need To Remove Toilet While Cutting Tiles?

Most professionals know the dangers of tiling around a toilet without removing it. You’ll generate more work for yourself in the long run if you don’t remove the toilet before tiling. With the toilet in the way, you’ll have to make more curved cuts and have less room to work.


When tiling around a toilet base, silicone caulk or grout will be required where the tile touches the toilet. Toilet seals must be replaced on occasion, however. This becomes a nuisance if the toilet base is covered in silicone caulk or grout.

Also, if you need to modify or replace the toilet in the future, you’ll have trouble finding an exact replacement. Because toilet bases exist in various shapes and sizes, this is the case. If you cut for one type of toilet, the foundation for future replacement toilets may not match.

What Are The Common Problems If You Cut Tiles Without Removing Toilet?

Do not remove the toilet when cutting tiles to save time. To properly tile, instead, remove the toilet. Although cutting tiles without moving the toilet is possible, doing so is always advised unless you cannot get that toilet to move.

You will also need grout or silicone caulk to make a flawless bond between the tile and the toilet base. Even though the toilet does not seem bad, you will need a replacement with the same base form.

Additionally, the toilet seal may probably need to be replaced over time. If your tile with the toilet is gone, you won’t even need to think about doing this in the future, even if you have the time.

Method 1: Cut Tiles Around The Toilet With A Template

Needed Tools And Materials

  • manual tile cutter
  • electric tile cutter for a big area
  • fine grit sandpaper
  • pencil
  • ruler
  • tape measure
  • hammer
  • A paper to trace and cut the template
  • scribe
  • nipper

1) Create A Template To Cut Tiles Around Toilet

It may be impossible to remove the toilet before installing tile, depending on how it was previously installed or for whatever reason. You can still tile around the toilet in this circumstance. Instead of sketching around the curve of the flange, you’ll need to trace around the toilet’s base.

Use A Template To Cut Tiles Around Toilet

You’ll use the shape template again for this. Make a trace of the toilet’s proportions on the tile, then cut it out. Remember to leave extra space for your grout lines between each tile and the base.

2) Mark Flange For Tiles Cutting

The traditional method of tracing and cutting a full tile is with construction paper or cardboard. Now, you may use the form template tool to trace the circular shape onto your tile accurately. Trace and cut as many pieces as you need to fit around the flange.

Lay the pieces on the floor and on top of the flange as if they were tiles once you’ve sketched their shape. By leaving spacing between tiles, remember to account for your grout lines. Trace the flange with your finger first, then a pencil or marker.

Mark Flange For Tiles Cutting

If you’re working with a removable flange, you may want it to sit on top of your already-installed tile. Make your circle smaller if this is the case. Your flange should, in theory, rest on your new tile. The flange must be either above or below the tile in either case.

3) Cut Tiles Around The Flange

The toilet flange is what you’ll need to tile around after removing the toilet. Draw out your grid and wet lay the tile, except where the flange will require cuts.

Cut Tiles Around The Flange

Once the rest of the tile has been installed in the toilet and has had time to dry thoroughly, you can start cutting around the flange. You risk harming your work if you don’t let the remainder of the tile dry first.

4) It’s Time To Make Cuts

You’ll need to cut them out after you’ve traced your tiles around the toilet flange. While cutting curves in tile, we recommend using one of two methods. One is completed with a tile scribe and nippers, while another is completed with an angle grinder.

Method 2:  Dry Fitting Of Cut Tiles

Now is the time to see if you used an angle grinder or a drill bit to cut your hole. Make sure your newly cut tile pieces fit around or under your flange by dry-laying them. Remember to install your toilet base and cover the cut once your tiles are in place.

Dry Fitting Method For Cut Tiles

Repeat the process if you made a mistake and your toilet base won’t cover the hole until you have the right cut. Before attempting to fasten the tile, double-check your work permanently.

The base of the toilet should cover the circular cutout as long as it is less than 0.5 in larger around the toilet flange.

Method 3: Cut And Install Tiles Before Toilet Installation

Install Tiles Away From The Area Of The Flange

When tiling a bathroom, draw your chosen grid pattern on the floor first, then start by laying tile over the open spaces. Wait until the very last minute to tile around the circular component known as the toilet flange, where the toilet itself will rest and attach to the drain pipe.

Reduce the number of tile cuts required by drawing a grid pattern for the tile layout on paper and then on the subfloor. To fit around the flange when using larger tiles, you might be able to cut a circle from a single tile.

Cut The Tile Template For Flange Area On A Paper

The paper should be placed precisely where the tile will go, considering your grout lines’ spacing. The same space should be left between the set tiles and your paper if grout lines separate your other tiles. To ensure that your grout line spacing corresponds with your paper templates, use the same plastic spacers you used when installing the tile.
Place one sheet of paper over the flange if you only need to cut one tile.

Drawbacks For Cutting Tiles Around The Toilet

Ceramic tiles have a reputation for being incredibly delicate. You might want to buy more than you originally intended to because, as a beginner, you might lose a few during the cutting process.

You can take several steps to stop this from happening, though. Make sure your tools are maintained regularly to keep them sharp and functional. Replace them in sections if necessary; otherwise, cutting tiles can become difficult.

Broken tiles while cutting

The tiles will cut more precisely if you make a good equipment investment. When cutting curves, a wet saw will be suitable if you intend to do it frequently.

Avoid using manual saws, and only use cheap cutters once or twice because they add extra time to cutting tiles.

What Would Be The Cost Of Cutting Tile Around The Toilet?

Retiling a bathroom floor can cost anywhere from $700 and $5,000 on average across the country. The price of doing this job will be determined by the size of the bathroom floor and the materials needed. You’ll want to maintain the upkeep now that you know how to tile around a toilet.

Knowing the potential causes of toilet overflow is a good idea. A blocked vent pipe, clogged drain, or higher float frequently causes this. Another thing to watch out for is your bathroom. It can be the shower drain or the toilet if the room smells like sewage.

There can be a serious issue with the sewer system if the sink and toilet drain make gurgling noises and the water smells. If you need assistance, get in touch with an expert.

When Do You Need To Call A Tiling Professional?

It can become complicated whenever you want to update your flooring. The best action is to consult a professional if you lack the necessary tools to install ceramic tile on your bathroom floor. You may wish to seek the help of a general contractor for a project like tiling the area surrounding your toilet.

 A Tiling Professional

In addition, get in touch with your neighborhood house inspection team if you’re unsure who to choose. In addition to recommending a trustworthy professional contractor, your neighborhood home inspection team can examine the toilet’s plumbing and bathroom floor.


Use a piece of paper to explain how the tile should be cut when cutting around a barrier. You may then use this to mark and cut your new tiles to the required shape. And that’s all there is to know about cutting tile around a toilet. If you want to save money, you could cut everything using an angle grinder.

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Author: Amanda Arnold

Amanda has been working with ConstructionHow since 2021. Her experience spans over 5 years in the creative niche such as home decor and trends, landscaping, renovations, and custom architectural values. As a home designer expert, she has a keen eye for the latest home improvement trends with accurate facts that readers find impossible to ignore. Being invested in home-building trends is how she has gained her lucrative expertise exploring more to bring a positive ambiance for all homeowners (and even tenants!). Currently, she lives in a beautiful beach home, a source of fascination for her.