The soft-close toilet seat, what a great invention. No more noisy toilet breaks or banging around and slamming of the lid in the night by children (and some adults).
But sooner or later the seat will have to come off. Maybe the hinges need adjusting to make the seat close a little softer, maybe it needs to come off for cleaning purposes or maybe it is old and needs replacing, but do you know how to remove a soft close toilet seat?
In this article, we are going to let you know how it is done so you can crack on with whatever else you have to do today.
What is a Soft Close Toilet Seat and How Do They Work?
A soft close toilet seat is a type of toilet seat attached to a hinge that will slowly (softly) descend until it meets the base. The mechanism by which these toilets achieve their slow closing is a small hydraulic dampener.
A hydraulic-assisted closure will have its own reservoir of compressed air or grease which will push against a piston and force it to extend, gradually lowering the weight attached to the other end.
The air inside the cylinder pushes against a seal at one end, generating an opposing pressure and slowly releasing out air from below ensuring that the dampening effect reduces any accompanying noise from the seat hitting the bowl.
How to Remove a Soft Close Toilet Seat?
The way that you remove a soft close toilet seat will vary by manufacturer, but I am guessing you are here because the fixings are concealed, and you have been unable to locate them under the pan.
Step 1 – Lift the Seat
The first thing that you will need to do is lift the seat. Lifting the seat will give you better visibility of the underside where you will often find a quick-release button that can be pushed to remove the seat.
If the seat has a button underneath somewhere (it could be disguised so check well), you can lift the seat away and then we can look at how to remove the hinges.
If you have been unable to find a button, the hinges may be attached to the seat, in which case, we will still need to look at removing the hinges.
Step 2 – Remove the Caps
In many cases, the part where the hinge is attached to the toilet is hidden by a chrome cap which can be lifted to expose the fitting underneath.
These may be a little stuck especially if they have not been removed for many years as there is a good chance that there will be some build-up holding them in place – this happens no matter how clean you are!
Step 3 – Undo the Fixing
If you have managed to lift off the caps and expose the fixing screws, these can be loosened.
With some hinges, the cap may not lift but what you will find is that there is a small opening at the base of the cap somewhere. Inside this opening, you should be able to fit a tiny spanner to loosen the nut inside (a poor design I know).
How to Adjust Soft Close Toilet Seat Hinges
If you think your hinges are getting worn and the toilet seat has stopped soft closing, you can try adjusting them before having to go out and get replacements.
Not all hinges will be adjustable as this varies by manufacturer but there is usually a small hole somewhere on the hinge that will allow a small screwdriver or allen key inside to enable adjustment.
The adjustments only need to be small and can be done either way to make the seat close a little faster or to make the seat close softer.
Pros and Cons of Soft Close Toilet Seats
It is the same with anything that you will buy for around your house, there will always be pros and cons although, with soft close toilet seats, we are a little light in the cons department.
Firstly, the noise reduction – exactly what they were designed for. Soft-close toilet seats will prevent those loud unnecessary noises from banging the seat up and down.
No slamming and banging of your toilet seat also keep the seat and toilet bowl protected from damage that could occur over time.
A soft closing toilet seat is also safer than a regular seat, especially with inquisitive little ones tearing up the house.
With a soft closing toilet seat, you won’t have to worry about the seat accidentally dropping and landing on their little fingers causing injury.
Soft close toilet seats are also more hygienic than toilet seats that have regular hinges because when you need to close the seat down, you can just gently touch it once on the top and it will close on its own.
Now you won’t have to have to hold the seat all the way down with your hands where you don’t want them to avoid the dreaded slamming.
The only con that we could think of is that the hinges can be damaged if they are unnecessarily forced.
This can happen when someone is busting to go, and the seat is not closing fast enough for them or if kids discover the slow mechanism and are fascinated so they try and force the lid closed whilst investigating.
I know, it’s a little bit of a reach but these things do happen.
In this article, we discussed how to remove a soft-close toilet seat. This is a task that is relatively easy, and you should have no issues doing it yourself.
Just remember that the fixings are likely to be concealed internally (in different places depending on the manufacturer) but there is always a way to reach them with a little investigation.
I hope you have found this helpful, or if your seat is different and you think I have missed something, let us know!
Plumbing Wizard Tips
“If you don’t have a soft close toilet seat, you should get one!”
“If your seat has become loose, try tightening first or adjusting the hinges!”
“Do not force the seat closed, forcing over time can damage the hinges irreparably!”
“Make sure you check all around the base of the pan for any bolts before going straight for the fixings on top!”
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you make a normal toilet seat soft close?
You are able to purchase soft close toilet seat hinges that may fit your particular seat although there are so many different manufacturers that this may not be easy. To save time, you may want to just buy a new seat.
How do I keep my toilet seat from slamming?
The only way to truly prevent the slamming of a toilet seat is to install a soft-close toilet seat. Soft-close toilet seats are designed with a dampening mechanism that means the seat closes very slowly, therefore, preventing slamming.
What is the difference between soft-close and slow-close toilet seats?
There is no difference in the toilet seats. Soft close and slow close are just two different names for the same style of a toilet seat.
I’m Lee the Plumbing Wizard. I’ve been a plumber for over 40 years and have seen it all. People used to call me a magician because I could fix things so easily – hence the name Plumbing Wizard.
I’m always happy to help out a fellow tradesman or woman, so if you need any advice or just someone to talk plumbing with, don’t hesitate to get in touch!