When planning a bathroom upgrade, picking a new toilet may not be at the forefront of your mind. Picking a beautiful tile and sink faucet are bound to seem more important but choosing the wrong toilet may cause you a great deal of regret down the line.  There are several features on new toilets that you should consider to make sure you end up with “the best seat in the house”!

Toilet Model Type

Most toilets are sold in one or two-piece styles. Two-piece styles have the tank and bowl separate and are generally harder to clean but more affordable. Wall hung toilets offer a sleek modern look but may require changes to standard plumbing for installation.

Seat Height

The seat height of a toilet can vary from 14 inches to 19 inches, with standard height toilets being 14 or 25 inches.  So called “chair height” or ‘comfort height” toilets tend to be 17 to 19 inches tall at the seat.  These types of toilets are ADA complaint and should be considered if you have a family member that has a disability. After considering the heights of those living in your home, it is really a matter of personal preference. You may feel more comfortable sitting on a lower toilet.

Bowl Shape

A toilet bowl is either round or elongated, depending on your preference. Round bowls are easier to clean since they’re more open, while elongated bowls are better for taller people since they cause less contact with the body.  Although this is again an issue of personal comfort.

Flush Type

There are a few different kinds of flushing technology you need to be aware of before you decide on which toilet to purchase. Toilets commonly have a gravity assisted, pressure assisted or dual flushing mechanism.  Many homeowners are familiar with a gravity assisted flush valve and can easily make repairs. While a pressure assist flush uses less water than a gravity assist, it can also be beneficial in older homes that require more force to push waste through the pipes. A more modern pressure-assisted or dual flush toilet repair may require the help of a qualified plumber.

Water Usage

The amount of water a toilet uses is equally essential as the amount of water used by your showers and bathrooms and appliances.  If you need to monitor your water usage, because you live in an area with water restrictions or have a septic system, or if you are just concerned with being more environmentally aware, you can consider a low flow toilet. Older toilets can use as much as 5 or more gallons per flush while newer models are designed to use 1.6 gallons or less.

Many toilet features such as height and shape are up to your personal preference.  If you are working with a contractor or plumber on your remodel, they can advise you on what style and type of toilet will fit best in your space and installation requirements.