Moisture detected before & after at the toilet base

I did a re-inspection this morning. On the original inspection, I reported finding up to a 19% reading on my moisture meter at a couple of locations around the toilet base. The owners had a plumber install a new wax ring. They said he actually used 2, why I do not know. Perhaps that was a mistake; I do not think the slab could be so unlevel it would be necessary. I saw the invoice for the work which was performed 11 days after the 1st inspection, and the seller’s Realtor said she witnessed the work. The toilet was sealed with silicone on both inspections. I know there are 2 schools of thought regarding sealing the base with silicon, but I really don’t want to get into that discussion other than perhaps how a silicone seal may impact the moisture meter reading if someone has info on that. Will 11 day old silicone produce a reading? (I will have to do some testing regarding that.) The owner stated they had never had a visible leak.
Today, I still found 2 locations around the base that produced readings up to 20%. I did not detect moisture all the way around the base, only in 2 locations, on the sides near the back. There was no visible water or staining at the time of either inspection. The toilet is on the ground level and the home is on a slab, tile flooring. I told the parties involved all I could do was report what I found and to monitor the situation. I do not want to be causing people to pay for unnecessary repairs by reporting faulty moisture findings.
Your thoughts please, and thanks in advance.

I would not trust a pin-less moisture meter on tile floor covering in the first place.
They’re usually OK for wood, drywall, roofing if you can set them for that.
Do you have the info booklet that came with it? :cowboy_hat_face:
That meter is for wood, I think.

You can’t see it in the picture, but it is not pin-less. I usually jab them in hard and sometimes have water shoot out. That’s always a no brainer that there’s a bad seal :laughing: Here’s a better pic of the meter.

Thanks for the reply, though!

Moisture meters are typically for wood. Readings on other materials are always relative, meaning that I need to see a large difference between a suspected area and a neutral area of the same material. My experience has always shown that readings on ceramics (tile), stone and concrete are always high and inconsistent.

If the readings were consistent all the way around the base of the toilet and the toilet was not noticeably loose (rocks) I would suggest there is no problem. If the toilet rocks I call it out for that and suggest a plumber verify the integrity of the seal and the toilet flange. Chances are good there was no problem originally.

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Yes, but you were using the pin-less feature in your photo.

As my Mexican friend would say: I do no undder-stand".
The OP stated he jabbed the pins in hard.
I don’t get it either. How do you use a pin/pin-less on ceramic tile?
Too much moisture/relative humidity to get a constant.

Huh? My meter doesn’t even have a “pinless” feature. You don’t know what you are talking about.

I do not use it on the tile. I insert the pins between the toilet and the floor, through the silicone if necessary. I have had water come out the holes occasionally. If I have broken the silicone seal, good. I have shown the wax ring has failed and water is trapped between the ring and the silicone.
Your racist comment is offensive.

Then how are you getting that reading? Did you have it set to capture and hold the highest reading?

Sorry you are sooo sensitive.
It was not intended to be & was not “racist”.
But if you wanna be picky-DUMB go right ahead.
And stop ramming your pins & breaking seals.

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Yep, ever since the new forum started up, we’ve been flooded with new wave of overly sensitive, habitually offended children.


Especially if you use a cheap $21 meter that is labeled & designed for:
Digital LCD Wood Moisture Meter
Cheap junk that is not designed for leaky toilets, tile, etc. :wink:

Yes, it has a “Hold” button. I find the highest reading I can, press “Hold”, lay the meter next to where I took the reading, and take a picture.

My mother is Mexican, I am half Mexican. Want to make fun of my accent, too? I am not being “overly sensitive.” You may not have intended to be offensive, but you were.

Pay attention who you speak to.
ha ha Steve is a racist too!
So you’re a 1/2 Mexican 1/2 whatever mutt & additionally baby dumb-ass. so what.
ps… I hate burritos so that closes the case! :laughing:

It will never give you a correct reading on a tile/concrete floor.
You could just be reading the concrete reinforcing mesh .
It’s all about reflectivity with a moisture meter.


Birthday party last night. :birthday:
There was a piñata, it was slammed & bashed open with a bat!
Some dumb-ass said it was offensive. :poop:

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Poor little piñata.

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Who are you saying is poor! That’s offensive!~

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I resemble that remark.

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