Toilets

Find out more about the household toilet

With the wide variety of toilet colors and styles available, a homeowner planning a bathroom addition or remodeling can easily become overwhelmed. In addition, prices for new toilets can range from as little as $100 up to several thousand dollars. After setting a budget for purchasing a toilet, there are still a number of things to consider.

Options in Toilet Designs

Toilets are either one-piece or two-piece designs. The one-piece model is usually more expensive, but offers the convenience of a tank, bowl, seat and required toilet hardware all in one package. In addition, a one-piece model can save on the costs of toilet repair down the road, since it is not possible to have a leak between the tank and the bowl. A two-piece toilet requires the separate purchase of a tank and a bowl. Toilet seats are not included with two-piece toilets, and must be purchased separately. You might also consider adding a bidet or a bidet seat to your toilet, for optimum cleanliness after elimination.

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There are two standard toilet flushing systems used in toilet models: the pressure assisted flush and the gravity flush. A toilet with a pressure assisted flush system uses pressurized air to force water into the bowl and has a lower chance of clogging than a toilet with gravity flush operation. The downside is that pressure assisted toilets can be more expensive to repair and noisier than their gravity-flush counterparts. A toilet with gravity flush operation uses the weight of the water and a siphoning action to perform the flushing action. While quieter and less maintenance-intensive than the pressure assisted system, a gravity flush toilet is more prone to clogs.

The bowl of a toilet is available either in a round shape or an elongated shape. A round bowl can save space in a bathroom and has more seat options from which to choose, while the elongated shape bowl is more luxurious and offers increased comfort.

There are other options in toilet styles and features, including:

  • Taller bowl designs to comply with the American Disabilities Act guidelines
  • Talking toilets which offer praise and can assist with potty-training efforts
  • Old-fashioned pull chain toilets for those homeowners who like a historical look

Toilet Installation Considerations

Be sure to look at water usage estimates when purchasing a new toilet; in many areas of the US, water rates are on the increase. In addition, low-flow and low-water-usage toilets are becoming more popular. Lastly, when remodeling an existing bathroom, try to resist the urge to reposition the toilet. Moving a waste line is a costly proposition.