Sanitation Ventures

Reviews and General Information on Toilets, Bidets and Washlets

Toilet Buying Guide

As I was putting this review site together, I decided it wasn’t enough to just let you know what models I think will best suit your households (or businesses for that matter). You see, buying a toilet these days is a lot more complicated than it used to be simply because we, the public, want more from our toilets.

We’re interested in all sorts of things such as shape, size, water usage, power and of course aesthetics. For that reason, I thought it would be prudent to add a “buying guide” to my website. In the following few words, I intend to give you some information on the various considerations that should be made before you part with your hard earned cash!

So, let’s get going.

toilet flush

Bowl Shape

The shape of the bowl you decide on will depend on a couple of things.
One: comfort (most people prefer elongated toilets)
and Two: the amount of space you have available in your bathroom (round toilets are great for small areas)

You may also want to think about the shape of the bowl if you have people of varying ages in your home. For instance, if you have children you may need to be able to add a seat on top that will stop them from falling down the toilet! Not all models have this ability so it’s worth thinking about this when you’re making a decision in this respect.

If you want some more detailed information on toilet bowl shapes, feel free to take a look at my Round vs Elongated bowl shapes section.

Bowl Height

There are essentially two types of bowl height you can purchase, standard and comfort. Standard height bowls are fine for people of an average height, but most manufacturers today also offer comfort height bowls for people who are over 6 feet tall or have trouble with their joints. People with knee problems deserve to be just as comfortable as anyone else when they use the toilet!

I specifically added a “height” column in my Comparison Table so you can search based on this criteria.

toilet flush

The Flush

This is where things can get very complicated. Technology has come a long way since toilets were first invented and the flush is possibly the one thing you should spend more time thinking about.

One of the biggest complaints I come across in my line of work is that people suffer from clogging with their toilets, and (although this little problem can be due to troublesome children), it’s generally linked with how well designed the flush is on a particular model.

So, when you’re looking for a new toilet think about what I’ve listed below for you.

The Flush Valve
If you don’t already know, this is installed in the tank of your toilet and it’s responsible for moving the water from the tank into the bowl when you flush. What you should consider with this is the size. Many standard models have a 2 inch flush valve however, the more complicate and in some cases expensive models can have a valve like this that’s 3 inches in diameter. The point is, the larger this valve is, the quicker it will move the water, resulting in higher performance overall.

The Trapway
This part of your toilet is basically the channel that carries the waste from your toilet into the sewage system. With this, bigger is definitely better! You may also come across the term “colon” which is exactly the same as a trapway (this snippet if information was passed on by one the plumbers at work – thanks Ed!)
Most trapways are 2 inches wide which will suit most households with an average amount of waste. But, if you really want to make sure you never suffer a clog again, you should look out for models that are almost 3 inches in size. The difference between 2 and 3 inches may not seem like much, but if you choose the larger size you can expect about 40% more space for waste to pass through (perfect for those small toys)!

There is of course, a lot more to this than meets the eye and rather than “pummel” you with all of the information here, you can find out more about the flush on my page Flushing Terminology.

cleaning a toilet

Cleanliness

No one likes cleaning toilets.
In fact I’m sure this is the most hated job even for professional cleaners, so manufacturers have responded with various features and technologies that will help reduce staining, odors and generally keep the amount of cleaning needed to a minimum.

The Water Spot
This refers to the water surface area, and is important to many people because the larger surface you have, the less likely waste is going to stick to the side of the bowl. This means added cleanliness and less brushing. If you’re concerned about stains being left behind, consider models that have a water surface area of about 8 to 9 inches.

The Toilet Surface
There are a couple of terms you will come across as you browse through my site. One is EverClean and the other is Sanagloss. Both of these are slightly different technologies, but they essentially work in the same way. Most toilets that don’t have these surfaces will be (to a point) porous. This means they will eventually become damaged by stains and minerals. Both EverClean and Sanagloss seal the surface of your toilet so this doesn’t happen. They are also specially treated so dirt cannot stick. No more bad smells or nasty stains to deal with, and a longer lasting toilet surface!

Noise Levels

This has to be right up there with clogging when it comes to customer complaints. We can’t help when we need to go to the bathroom, and if this happens to be in the middle of the night you need a toilet that won’t wake the whole household and get the dog barking!

For this reason, lots of manufacturers have combined their flushing technology with the amount of noise it makes when you action it. On many of the following pages, I have done my best to point out in the reviews which toilets are quiet yet powerful.

toilet seat

The Seat

Again, the shape and comfort of your seat is just as important as the shape of the bowl. Not all toilets come with seats as standard, and I have made sure you’re well aware of this when I’ve reviewed the various models here.

Some of you may prefer to have the seat included however, there are times when it’s useful that it doesn’t. The reason for this is it gives you the option to decide what type of seat you would like. For more information on this, take a quick look at my best picks.

12 inch rough-in

Rough-In Dimensions

If you’re a novice to searching for a new toilet, it’s likely you won’t really know what a rough-in is. Basically, it’s the part of your plumbing for a toilet which will be concealed once it’s installed.

It’s important you know the size because they can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. However, the standard is 12 inch, which means you will have a little more trouble finding the best toilet if you need another size rough-in.

Warranties

For the most part, any toilet will come with at least 12 months warranty. However, there are brands on the market that offer much more than this. Of course, the longer the warranty, the more pricey the toilet is likely to be. This is because only companies that are confident about the technology they use can back it up with an extended warranty period.

Do be aware however, what this includes. Some companies will cover both parts and labor whilst others will only cover parts. It’s always a good idea to check this out prior to hitting that “order” button.

I hope this helps, and I also hope you enjoy browsing through the rest of my website.

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