What to Look for When Buying a Toilet

When you think of the most-used part of your bathroom, you likely think of your toilet. You’re right to do so! In fact, every person in your household ends up flushing that toilet about 5 times a day.

All that flushing means a lot of wear and tear on the toilet itself. Eventually, you’ll want to replace it, but there’s more to how to buy a toilet than just picking one up at the hardware store.

You need to choose the right toilet for your needs, your budget, and your bathroom’s décor. Here’s what you need to do to make sure you buy the right model.

Think About the Shape

Before you can start shopping for a toilet, you need to think about the shape you want it to have. There are two main categories of toilet shapes on the market: round and elongated.

Both serve the same purpose, but round toilets take up less floor space in your bathroom. Typically, they take up about 28 inches of space, making round toilets ideal for tight spaces and small bathrooms. That said, round toilets typically have smaller seats, making them less comfortable for some individuals.

If you have a larger bathroom or are comfortable with the toilet being a focal point of your design, an elongated toilet may be the better choice. As an added bonus, people tend to find elongated toilets more comfortable than round ones.

For homeowners who entertain regularly or those who worry about round toilets being too small, an elongated toilet is an absolute must.

Consider the Seat Height

Floorspace is only one measurement you’ll need to worry about. You also need to think about how high off the ground you want the seat to be.

If it’s too tall, you won’t feel comfortable while using the toilet. But if it’s too short, you’ll end up feeling cramped anytime you’re on the seat. Worse, it might be too hard for you to get up and down when you need to use the bathroom.

Measure your current toilet’s seat height and think about how you feel about it. If you like the way it feels and how easy it is to get on and off the seat, try to buy a toilet that’s around that height.

Remember, you can always add a toilet leg rest around the base if you have small children.

Pay Attention to Efficiency

Not all toilets use the same amount of water with every flush. Some use several gallons while others use just a fraction of that amount.

For some homeowners, water efficiency may not seem like a major priority, but it should be. Consider this: the average homeowner spends about $70 on their monthly water bill.

The less water you send down the pipes, the more money you’ll save. By choosing a more efficient toilet, you could cut your water bill by hundreds each year.

If you’re wanting a simple water-saving model, choose a low-flow toilet. These use minimal water to flush and clean the bowl. But if you want the most efficient toilet, consider one with a dual flush setting.

The dual flush setting lets you choose how much water to use for every flush and the types of waste you’re flushing. For example, if you’re just flushing liquid waste and toilet paper, you’ll need less water and can choose the low-water flush.

These features may cost extra, but they’re worth it and can pay for themselves over time.

Don’t Neglect the Color

The most common color of toilets across the country is white, but that’s not the only option you have to choose from.

Think about the existing colors you have in your bathroom. Which ones do you love? Which ones do you want to highlight most?

Use this to guide your choice. Keep in mind that you may need to order a toilet from a specialty store or directly from the manufacturer if you’re looking for a specific color or pattern.

However, if you’re planning on selling your home in the near future, it’s best to keep the toilet white. This makes it easier for prospective buyers to see the highlights of your bathroom rather than getting fixated on a color they’re not wild about.

Choose One or Two-Piece

Toilets can be solid single pieces of porcelain or broken into two main components. The standard model is a two-piece toilet that has a seam between the toilet bowl and the tank. These toilets must get assembled as part of the installation process.

One-piece toilets get rid of that seam and are a single, solid piece. They’re easier to clean than two-piece toilets, but they often cost more and can be more difficult to maneuver into your bathroom for installation.

There’s no right or wrong option. You should base your decision on your sense of style and your budget.

Don’t Forget About Additional Features

When choosing a toilet, you’ll also want to think about the types of features you want it to have. Things like built-in bidets, heated seats, silent-closing lids, and built-in deodorizers are all possibilities.

Again, there’s nothing wrong with keeping it simple, but if you’re investing in a toilet that you plan on keeping for the next decade or so, why not go big?

Just make sure you take the time to learn more about those features and the toilets you’re considering before you commit to a specific model. The last thing you want to do is end up with a toilet you don’t like and aren’t comfortable using.

Now You Know How to Buy a Toilet

The toilet is the most-used feature of any bathroom and now that you know how to buy a toilet, you’re ready to start browsing your options.

Just remember to keep the rest of your bathroom’s design in mind when choosing a toilet. Your toilet can be the focal point of the room, but it doesn’t have to be. Pick the feature you want to highlight most in the space and choose a toilet that will complement that feature.

For more helpful tips on home remodeling and renovation projects, check out our latest posts.