Which Toilet is the Best Choice for Your Home or Business?
When it’s finally time to remodel the bathroom or order plumbing products for your new business, toilets are likely to be one of your most important purchases. But there are lots of models on the market. How do you choose well?
Although it’s a generalization to say so, most homeowners first notice brand and style when they choose a toilet for their bathroom. By contrast, most business owners choose models that are most cost-effective and durable. Of course, everyone wants a toilet that works well.
But there’s a lot more to choosing a toilet.
Although your own preferences matter most, it also helps to pay attention to your plumber’s suggestions. A plumber knows the advantages and disadvantages of various toilet models on the market—just the kind of knowledge you need to save money and frustrations later.
The first thing to understand is that most toilets sold today fall into two basic categories:
- Traditional Gravity-Assisted Toilet: A typical toilet flushes through gravity from a water tank that’s positioned above the bowl. After flushing, a fill valve refills water in the tank and siphons off a portion to refill the toilet bowl.
- Modern Pressure–Assisted Toilet: In this system, the conventional toilet tank contains a smaller, airtight plastic tank that combines with pressurized air to rapidly push water and wastes out of the bowl. The way to recognize this type of toilet is by its loud whooshing noise during flushing
Next, we’ll discuss the variations on these basic models so you can decide which toilets are best for your home or business.
One Piece vs. Two-Piece Toilets
It’s all in the name: one-piece toilets don’t have a separate tank unit and two-piece toilets do. Beyond this, it’s helpful to understand the specifications of each type.
- Are easier to clean than two-piece toilets, as there’s no gap where the tank normally meets the bowl.
- Are visually sleek and have a lower profile, making them especially good for smaller bathrooms.
- Tend to flush more quietly than two-piece models.
- Sometimes come in wall-mounted versions with hidden cisterns inside the bathroom wall.
- May be good options in commercial settings (because of quiet flushing and easy cleaning features).
- Are heavier than two-piece toilets, simply because they are a single entity that demands carrying by more than one person.
- May be twice as expensive as a traditional, two-piece model.
- Are commonly available (4 out of 5 toilets sold today are two piece) and are familiar to consumers.
- Are a budget-conscious option, costing—on average—between $100 and $400 dollars. Upscale models cost anywhere from $500 and up.
- Hold the same water amount as one-piece models.
- Are easier to move than one-piece toilets, or paint behind during remodels.
- May leak more, as they contain more parts than do one-piece models.
- Are harder to clean; bacteria and grime can easily accumulate where tank meets toilet bowl.
Dual Flush and High Efficiency Toilets
Because people are more eco-conscious than they used to be, they are interested in saving energy and reducing waste. These are good reasons to consider dual flush or high-efficiency models for your bathroom.\
Dual Flush Toilets
So, what are dual flush toilets? Simply put, these toilets feature a flushing option for liquids and a separate one for solids. Here are a few advantages to installing this model:
- You’ll save water by only using 1.6 gallons, maximum, per flush (as opposed to traditional toilets that use at least 3.5 gallons).
- Low volume (liquid) flush uses the least amount of water; higher volume (solid) flush uses a bit more.
- Dual flush models tend to clog less than traditional toilets.
- This model save money on your water bill.
- You may receive a special rebate or tax incentive on your purchase.
- Conversion kits make it possible for you to convert your existing toilet into a dual-flush toilet.
There are, however, a few potential disadvantages as well:
- Installation is more complicated than with traditional toilets.
- Dual flush costs more, particularly if the entire toilet is new (as opposed to a conversion kit).
High Efficiency Toilets
Like dual-flush toilets, high efficiency models use less water and still flush with greater efficiency and power. HETs are considered at least 20 percent more efficient than traditional toilets, and they’re available from most plumbing manufacturers.
Keep in mind that HETs may be traditional gravity-flushers, pressure assisted, or even dual flush.
Here are a few other things you should know:
- Traditional models (gravity flush) now feature bigger flappers and waste traps.
- HETs also feature improved siphoning to suction the wastes from the bowl.
- Since the flappers are larger than those used in traditional toilets, they may be more difficult to find and replace.
- HET pressure-assisted models are good options for the workplace, as they tend to clog less or demand as much maintenance as traditional models.
So what toilet is best for your home or business? In the end, only you can decide. If you want to save money and the environment, one-piece units or high-efficiency models may be for you, even though they cost more at the onset. If you’re happy with the cost and function of a traditional model, you’ll always have plenty of choices.
Still need help? Talk to your plumber to help you narrow down your options and install your toilet at home or work. Enjoy your new bathroom!