Toilets Buying Guide

  • Getting Started

  • Buying a toilet can seem like an easy task - until you go to the shop and try to buy one. There are multiple types of toilets with different features and designs that are necessary to understand before you make a purchase.

  • What to Consider

  • While there are the esthetic aspects of the feel and comfort of the toilet you will want to consider, also shape, size and type are important to ensure it will be a good fit for your home and the style of your home. There is also the ‘green’ aspect or efficiency aspect to consider when making such a purchase.  Some toilets can save gallons of water per flush, which really makes a big difference at the end of the year is cost savings and also the impact on the environment.

  • Types of Toilets

  • Close Coupled:  Close coupled toilets are the most common, the easiest to install and the cheapest of them all. They come in a wide range of designs and colors. The biggest advantage of these toilets is that the cistern and the pan are sold as one unit. They are easy to shop. Besides, all pipes are concealed within the unit, so close coupled toilets always look streamlined.

    Back-to-Wall:  Back-to-wall toilets are similar to the previous type because they are also sold as one unit. The difference is that both a pan and a cistern of a back-to-wall toilet sit flush against the wall. With these toilets, you don't need to clean the back of the toilet and they look more sophisticated than close coupled toilets. You can easily access the cistern if you need to perform repairs.

    Wall Faced Toilets:  Wall faces toilets are similar to the previous type but the cistern is concealed. You can install the cistern within the cabinet or a wall to achieve a seamless look perfect for modern homes with contemporary designs. They are great if you have a small bathroom, but sometimes you need to buy a cistern separately. Those models that come with the cistern that is built into the wall make use of space in the bathroom and create clean lines.

    Wall Hung Toilets:  Wall hung toilets feature the same design as wall faced toilets but these are raised from the floor. They can create an even greater sense of space and add a modern touch to your bathroom. These are easy to maintain and clean down the sides and underneath so you can better clean the whole bathroom. The biggest advantage is that you can adjust the height of the toilet for your specific needs. It is extremely useful for people with limited mobility.

    One Piece versus Two Piece:  Many people prefer one piece toilets over two piece toilets. One of the most important advantages of one piece models is their simple installation. A two piece toilet needs more knowledge, time and hardware for installation, and the cost of a plumber could be even more expensive than buying and installing the one piece toilet.  The chances of leaks are more or less the same in both toilets. Therefore, if you are on a budget, a one piece may seem a better option.

  • Key Features

  • Efficiency:  For example, a standard toilet consumes 1.5 gallons of water per flush. There are modern toilets with the dual flush feature that consume less than one gallon per flush. These models often have the WaterSense label which confirms their high efficiency. If you think about low-term consequences, buying a toilet that consumes less water is worth it.

    Rebates:  Speaking of efficient toilets, it is not only reducing the amount of money you pay as water bills, it will earn you money on rebates. You can check whether your environmental conservation authority offers the facility and claim on it by getting a modern toilet.

    Flush Type:  Even though there are mostly single and dual flush type toilets on the market, different manufacturers implement their own designs. Many people prefer getting dual flush toilets. They are more expensive but contribute immensely to water conservation because they use different types of flushes to flush different waste.

    Flushing Noise:  If you are buying the toilet to your ensuite bathroom, flushing noise should be one of the key considerations. Certain toilets have advanced features and are efficient, and they can flush everything down easily. However, the force of water gives rise to a loud noise that is not suitable for a quiet bathroom. So pay careful attention to this point before you buy anything.

    Floor-Mount versus Wall-Mount Toilets:  The vast majority of modern toilets are plumbed through the floor. However, wall-mount models are plumbed through the wall, which means the wall must be thicker to hold the weight of the toilet. Moreover, you may need to open the wall where the tank is located in order to repair the toilet. However, these toilets are easier to clean and provide a better look to your bathroom.

    Pressure-Assisted versus Gravity-Feed Toilets:  In a gravity-feed toilet, water moves waste down the drain by dropping from the tank. These models usually flush more quietly and work longer. In a pressure-assisted toilet, the pressure that pushes the waste out is created by the water that displaces air within the tank. They are often pretty noisy but more efficient.

    Bowl Height and Shape:  Bowl shape determines the overall level of comfort and the design the toilet has. Therefore, the decision is up to preferences of a certain individual but an elongated bowl is the most common. It is considered the most comfortable for adults because it allows them to conveniently place their thighs.

    When you measure toilets from the floor to the top of the bowl they are 14 to 15 inches high. This is suitable for many applications but some people may need a taller bowl. There are toilets that go up to 20 inches and it is useful for everyone with challenges when it comes to sitting on the toilet.

    However, if your bathroom is small, then you do not have a lot of choice than a round shaped bowl. It helps the toilet to be small and compact and doesn't harm the level of comfort. Thus, it is better to choose a toilet based on a space it takes. If the bathroom is small, buying a large toilet will not be convinient.

    Toilet Seat:  One of the most important features to consider when shopping for a new toilet is to determine whether you need a slow closing toilet seat. Expensive models have this to eliminate the banging and damage that happen from toilet slamming, thus these models are quieter and safer.
    If you look for the best of toilet seats, you will want to get a bidet toilet seat. This is a heated seat that will enhance your cleanliness with a stream of warm water. Some models also provide a warm air drying so you can be paperless.

    Height:  Height is one of the most important considerations you need to make. Some of them are too high for you while others are so low that your knees may hurt. This is a common problem when you shop for toilet online because different manufacturers make completely different models. To avoid the problem, search for the ADA certified toilet.

    Size:  The toilet can have an outstanding design and efficient water consumption, but if it is not the right size for your bathroom, then you would not make the right purchase. So make sure to take all the measurements right, especially if you have a small bathroom and you will not get a downsized or oversized toilet.

    Cleaning:  Everyone who does not enjoy cleaning the toilet daily should take this into consideration. That is why manufacturers have implemented multiple features to help you with cleaning. Some of the most expensive models have smooth and glossy surfaces to help cleaning faster and minimize dirtying.

    Appearance:  Older and less expensive models are less classy and may not be suitable for a modern bathroom. However, there are a lot of newer models that are not only beautiful but also boastful when it comes to advanced features. They also come in a variety of colors and materials to choose from. So getting a pink or a blue toilet is easy.

  • Cost Considerations

  • According to studies, toilets represent up to 30% of residential water use. Therefore, to limit the water consumption, the US Government issued the law stating that toilers cannot use more than 1.6 gallons per flush. So when you shop for a toilet, you want to check for its water efficiency and the flushing power.

    Quite often, the budget decides the toilet model a buyer is going to get. Even though the budget is one of the top considerations, but it is not enough to make an ultimate decision. There are a lot of toilets in any price range, so do not settle for anything that does not meet your needs.

    While it is entirely possible to make a blind purchase and hope for the best, these are the most important points that you should be looking for. Begin your search only after you discover what suits you the most.