Choosing a toilet is an integral part of every bathroom remodel. Even though it might seem like a straightforward decision, there are several different factors that go into choosing the best toilet for your home — height, shape and mount type are just a few considerations. But before you start debating the nuances of bowl shapes, or pondering the pros and cons of one-piece toilets, get familiar with all your options below!
What toilet size works best for my bathroom?
Measure the rough-in distance: the distance from the wall behind the bowl to the center of the floor drain. Use this measurement to determine the size of your new toilet — it must fit into the space between the drainpipe and the wall to work in your space. Also, keep in mind that bathroom guidelines recommend a minimum of 18 inches of clear space between toilets and any other fixture or walls. If you don't have much room to spare, a wall-hung toilet is a great alternative because it eliminates the need for a base, and mounts the water tank and drain behind the wall. If you can't afford this upgrade, try a tankless toilet or a corner toilet; at the very least, ensure that you choose a unit with a round bowl, as elongated and oval-shaped bowls take up more space (though they do tend to be more comfortable).
Should I buy a two-piece or one-piece toilet?
One-piece units are a complete piece that are easier to clean and won’t leak between the bowl and the tank. They’re sleek, stylish and compact, but they’re generally more expensive than two-piece toilets, which come with a separate tank and bowl. Be sure you purchase all the necessary parts with the two-piece models, as the seat is not usually included with the bowl.
What is the optimal toilet height?
When making this decision, consider the needs of your family. Standard height is 14 to 15 inches, but a comfort height toilet, measuring 16 to 17 inches, may be more practical depending on your preferences; people prefer the “comfort height” as it can make it easier to get on and off the toilet. Tall toilets are also more accessible for elderly or physically challenged individuals, and often are ADA compliant. On the other hand, small toilets work well in a child's bathroom, especially while potty training.
What is a dual-flush toilet, and do I need one?
As you consider your options, you will likely come across a lot of new features, including dual-flush. It might sound fancy, but simply put, it gives you the ability to flush with two different levels of water as needed. This feature is aligned with the movement to be more conscious about water usage, which in turn can lower your monthly water bill. Although this is a nice feature to have, dual-flush designs do come in at a higher price than other low-flow toilets, so you will have to weigh the initial cost with future savings to figure out if it makes sense for you and your family.