Did you know that the average person will flush a toilet 140,000 times in their lifetime? Wow, that’s a lot of flushing! So, if you’re shopping around for a new toilet to update your bathroom, it’s a good idea to know a few things about the toilet you’re going to choose.
First, do some measuring:
- How far from the wall is my current toilet? The standard distance from the wall to the bolt that holds the toilet to the floor is 12″. If yours is more or less, maybe you’ll have to order a less common size toilet.
- What height toilet do you want? Standard height toilets are 15″ (not counting the seat). “Comfort Height” toilets are taller – 17″ – 19″. These taller toilets can be more comfortable for aging knees and joints, but difficult for toddlers to train on.
Round Bowl or Elongated Bowl? The most common bowl types are round or elongated. Round bowls are most common in small bathrooms, where an elongated bowl may cause the door not to shut properly, or get in the way of other fixtures. You can usually tell just by a quick look at your toilet which type you have.
Flush Strength – Most modern toilets are 1.28 to 1.6 gallons per flush. If you’ve had problems in the past with “getting it all down” or have a drain cleaner out regularly, go with a stronger flush 1.6 gallon, such as the Gerber Avalanche. Otherwise, a toilet like the Gerber Viper is perfect for most homes.
Color – Unless you need to match other fixtures in the bathroom, or have a unique decorating flair, stick with WHITE. We can find other color toilets, but they are much less common than they used to be.
Toilet Seat – Get a seat that matches your bowl (round or elongated), and Soft Close seats that float down to closed will last longer and be easier on little fingers.
Finally, take a look at the shut off valve for your toilet. It’s usually on the left side of the toilet, close to the wall. It’s a good idea to check this valve regularly – turn the water off, flush the toilet to make sure it doesn’t fill again, and then open the valve. If it’s frozen shut, don’t use a wrench or try to force it – just note that you’ll need a plumber to replace that shut off valve when you have your new toilet installed.
At Jake the Plumber, we install Gerber toilets to match your needs – and we can give you a quote for installation over the phone! If you prefer another brand, such as Kohler or American Standard, we can price that out for you too!
–Deb at Jake the Plumber