Potty Talk: How to Select a Toilet
I seem to be taking part in a LOT of “Potty Talk” these days. Don’t think trash mouth, think selecting the right toilet. I wish you ALL could be a part of these conversations. Totally serious with intermittent laughter!
With clients it is kind of personal and yet, I have to put on my therapist hat to get to some details. Ha!
In an airport. In Singapore. Pressing buttons with Chinese characters on them and having water fly into the air and out of the water closet. Needless to say, I walked out of the bathroom a wet, disheveled mess. I am STILL laughing as I type this!
Did you know that 27% of our home water usage is from our toilets? Oh and we flush our toilets on average 5 times/day. That’s about 2,000 times/year! Yes, I am from California, and we get bombarded with water saving tips every day:)
Let me tell you, we have some very strict standards and we are always being “encouraged” to update our toilets to more efficient toilets.
What the heck? What does that even mean? Can’t we just go to Home Depot and grab one off the shelf?
Well, we do have to make some decisions…
One- vs. Two-Piece Toilets
One Piece Toilet
One-piece toilets integrate tank and bowl into a seamless, space-saving design that is easy to clean since you don’t have the space between the tank and the bowl. This type of toilet can look more modern because of the fluid lines.
Two Piece Toilet
Two-piece toilets have a separate tank and bowl. This is a traditional take on toilets and the tank is bolted to the bowl.
The next big decision is bowl shape. This is ALWAYS confusing to my clients!!
Compact elongated bowls have an oval shape and the “compact” part is that it isn’t long, so if you have space constraints, this is an option.
Elongated bowls are the comfy bowls that are big enough for large men. They are oval shape and stick out the farthest.
Round front toilets are the old school toilets are often round and feel really small when you sit on them. I have a tiny, tiny powder room and I put one in there and always feel like I am at pre-school when I sit down.
There are two seat heights “Comfort” and Standard.
Comfort Height® is trademarked by Kohler, but it means standard chair seat height which is around 17″-19″ from the floor to the top of the seat. Most people are used to sitting at this height from the floor and therefore, it is more comfortable. Most knees aren’t cracking at this height.
Standard height is a seat height under 17″. Again, more traditional toilets are at the height, as well as the toilet in my tiny, tiny powder room:)
Until I went to KBIS, I never realized the importance of flushing types. I mean, this was the center of the Toto exhibition space…A big ole’ tornado!
Pressure-Assisted Flush System
This type of toilet is not usually found in a home. Think, public toilet with loud flushing. Pressurized air forces water into the bowl when flushed. The pressure is so high that it reduces the chance for clogs.
This system is found in homes and is the most common system. Gravity uses the water weight to generate flushing pressure. Water pressure forces everything from the tank into the bowl and through the S-shaped trap. Then, a siphoning action completes the flush. It is not nearly as loud as the pressure-assisted flush!
As a subset, there are now combinations of the technology.
A dual flush system, when used correctly, has the user select a full flush or partial flush. The partial flush uses less water and is supposed to reduce water. I said used correctly, because people get frustrated when not everything flushes with the partial flush, so they flush again.
If you are remodeling, you will have to worry about rough-in size.
The rough-in is the distance between the outlet pipe and the wall behind the toilet. What you need to do is measure the distance from the wall behind the toilet to the bolt caps of the toilet. Do not include baseboards in your measurements. Once you have this distance, check the specifications to make sure the rough-in size is compatible!
Well, there you have it! Potty talk!!
You never knew you had to be so educated to select a toilet:) Ha.
Click on this link if you want a download with all of the details for the next time you are working with clients on toilet selections.