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Our Guide to Common Toilet Types and Features

Let’s face it, the toilets in your home likely get a fair amount of use, so among all the bathroom fixture you want to choose carefully, this is one of the more important. Here’s a look at some common toilet types and design options to help you choose the best model for your home.

toilet types: plain white toilet

From one-piece toilets to eco-friendly models and even urinals, you may be surprised at the wide array of toilet options available. Our toilet types breakdown will help you choose wisely, whether you’re planning a bathroom remodel or simply need a toilet upgrade.

Toilet Types

One-piece toilet

If you’re a fan of all-in-one fixtures, the one-piece toilet may be the perfect choice. The tank, bowl, and trapway are all included in a single piece of material which makes for fairly easy installation, maintenance, and cleaning.

toilet types: white one-piece toilet

They also have a more streamlined profile and can be more durable than other toilet types, like a two-piece toilet. While they may also be a bit more expensive, the single-piece design can make them a good option for smaller bathrooms or ones that simply have a tighter space allocated for the toilet.

Two-piece toilet

As the name suggests, these toilets come in two sections: the tank and the bowl. Installed together, they make up your completed toilet assembly. This type is the most common in the U.S. as they are very durable, relatively inexpensive, and the individual pieces can be replaced separately if one of them does happen to fail.

toilet types: two-piece toilet

Installation and cleaning is a bit more difficult than a one-piece toilet, but not significantly so, and the lower cost may outweigh those potential drawbacks. The two-piece design also makes maintenance easier. You can often replace broken parts on your own, whereas this may not be as easy with a one-piece.

Wall-hung toilet

If you’re after a minimalist toilet footprint or you have space restrictions, a wall-hung toilet may be a good option. The bowl is mounted on the wall while the tank is hidden inside the wall. A flash plate or panel is then affixed to the wall surface rather than to a tank-mounted handle.

toilet types: wall hung toilet
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These are great to consider if you’re doing a full-scale remodel, as there is more planning involved in placement and installation. In terms of cleaning, these are also a great option since there’s less to clean overall. Maintenance can be tricky though, especially if there’s an issue with the tank, but if aesthetic is important to you, these may be hard to beat.

Smart toilets

If luxury is your main driver, consider a smart toilet. Not only do they offer a range of functional features, they can also include several comfort enhancements over traditional models. From hands-free flushing to heated seats to self-cleaning tools, smart toilets are reshaping the bathroom experience.

In terms of aesthetic, most come in sleek, contemporary profiles perfect for a modern bathroom remodel. Upfront cost will be higher and installation will be a bit more complex, but the added features and comfort may be worth it in the end.

toilet types: smart toilet
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Bidet and bidet toilet seat

While not officially a toilet, bidets are becoming more popular in bathroom remodels. They can offer superior cleaning after using the toilet, and they provide a positive environmental impact by allowing users to cut down on toilet paper use. Of course, a bidet will require a bit of extra plumbing work and space for the additional appliance, which will all add to your cost.

One way to get many of the features of a bidet without springing for a completely new fixture is to invest in a bidet toilet seat. They offer the cleaning function of a traditional bidet, but rest on top of your existing toilet tank, replacing your old seat. These come in a variety of sizes and colors, to help make matching one to your current toilet easy.

Urinal

toilet types: urinal
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If you’re remodeling a toilet in your man cave or simply want to make your bathroom space a bit unique, a urinal could be the perfect water closet complement. Keep in mind that it will require extra space and maintenance, but it can provide some toilet separation if that’s important to you.

Toilet features

Dual-flush toilets

In older, standard toilets, the average flush can use up to 7 gallons of water. That’s a lot. More modern ones use somewhere around 1.6 gallons, but there are ways to decrease that even more.

Enter the dual-flush toilet. These give you more control over your flushing habits by letting you choose how much water to use. Selecting the full-flush option will use more pressure in order to remove solid waste. The half-flush will adequately remove liquid waste from your toilet and can cut water consumption in half.

Double-cyclone toilets

double cyclone toilet
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Another water-saving toilet option is the double-cyclone style. They create a powerful flush by using a pair of nozzles along the rim of the bowl, but they still use a minimal amount of water. The result is both a clean rim and bowl after every flush.

No-touch flush

Personal hygiene is always important. One way to help stay germ-free after going to the bathroom is to use a no-touch flushing toilet. Common in public spaces like restaurants and airports, these can also make great additions to your home bathroom.

toilet types: no touch flush toilet
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They work by using motion sensors, so they flush when they detect you moving away from the toilet after you’ve finished or by waving your hand over a sensor. Simple, clean, and seamless.

Toilet Design Options

Bowl shape

When it comes to toilet shape, the two most common types are round and elongated. Most elongated bowls offer about 2 more inches of length than round ones, which can improve comfort and give added surface area, particularly helpful for those with longer legs, for example.

Round-front bowls are a bit more compact. This means they take up less room and can work better in smaller bathroom spaces. If you’re remodelng a hall or half-bathroom, this may be the ideal choice.

Color

While most toilets come in a standard white, if you’re looking for a bit more flair with this fixture, you do have color options. Whether you’re going for a retro pastel look, something bright like fire-engine red, or prefer a more understated gray or black, chances are you can find something that matches your style.

toilet types: gray toilet
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Are you thinking about a bathroom remodel? We’re happy to discuss your project. Simply schedule a conversation with us!

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