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How To Talk Reno - Toilets

Whether you’re an experienced DIY’er, or have simply caught reno-fever during lockdown, great design ideas and gorgeous interior spaces aren’t hard to find. Do a quick search online and inspo abounds. Whilst we agree that it’s important to have an idea of what you want to guide you in your home reno process, we know first-hand that also ascertaining whether it will work, and whether it’s the right choice for you, is crucial.

In our last How To Talk Reno blog, we outlined everything you need to know in order to select the right kitchen sink and bathroom basin for your home.  Now we’ll tackle something a little bit more technical (stick with us here) - Toilets.

Ok, first off - Toilets are not gross (what the kids or hubby might do to them at times, is another matter entirely…).

This humble everyday fixture is, in fact, an essential sanitation facility necessary to every home - and a blessing we often take for granted. Remember the last time you went camping? Bet you loved your whole bathroom a whole lot more when you got back home!

There’s nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed about when shopping for a porcelain throne.  In our 51 years of dealing with dunnies, we’ve pretty much seen it all (from dream home to nightmare disaster).  To ensure your home is sanitary, safe, and stylish to boot, you’ve got to get the right loo.

Read on to find out how to choose what’s right for you.

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Pic Source:  Clark

Toilet Types

Toilets come in a variety of shapes, sizes and styles.  The most common type of toilet suite used in new-builds and renovations is the back to wall, or Wall-faced toilet suite.

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This option is popular because the ceramic pan sits flush against the wall and negates the need to clean the exposed pipework seen in older styles.  Many wall-faced suites are now also available in rimless designs, allowing for an even easier clean and creating a much more hygienic experience in your home.

If you have an older home, are wanting a provincial or federation look, or are very limited by your existing pipework, you may want to go for either a connector or close-coupled toilet suite.

Connector suites in particular allow a lot of flexibility when retrofitting because the pan is connected to the cistern by a plastic link piece, which can be cut and adjusted to allow the pan to fit existing pipework in the floor. Both connector suites and close-coupled suites are great options for very budget conscious renovators.

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Pic Source:  Fienza

When it comes to new builds, home owners wanting a modern, streamlined look, can go for an in-wall (or “concealed-cistern”) toilet suite. This type of toilet has a cistern which is installed either inside of the finished wall, in the ceiling, or under a counter, giving it a very minimalist look.

It’s a great space-saving option, and with a range of flush buttons available in different colour finishes and styles, you can customize your suite to match almost any bathroom design.

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Source:  Decina

Important Considerations

One of the most common mistakes we encounter is home owners wanting to replace their existing toilet suite, without any information on their current plumbing set out.

A plumbingset out” is the term applied to the location where the waste inlet for a toilet is situated, in either the floor (S trap) or the wall (P trap). This is where all the yuck stuff makes it’s exit from your beautiful bathroom - clearly, it’s not something you want to get wrong.

If you’re building your bathroom from scratch, no probs. If you’re replacing an old toilet however, or using existing pipework for your reno, you need to know the measurement from the finished wall to the center of the hole in the wall or floor (aka. the set out).

Different toilet suites have different set out measurements, so measuring up and heading into the showroom with this info before making your selection is wise.  In fact, not just wise - it’s necessary.

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Depending on your existing plumbing, you may also need to know whether you require a back inlet toilet suite (is your water inlet-where the water is entering the suite- going to be inside the cistern?), or a bottom inlet one (where the water connection will be via a little tap on the wall).

Talk to your plumber if you’re unsure, or run it by one of our knowledgeable showroom staff.

Once again, if you’re building a new home, or your reno will involve completely new pipework, you won’t be limited as much by what you can and can’t do.

 A Note On Bidet Suites

In recent years, the trend of bidet toilet suites has been steadily gaining ground. Homeowners have become aware of the superior hygiene benefits such suites can offer, and there are several high-end models on the market that boast features like heated seats, UV lighting to destroy germs, and advanced sanitation functions.

We have a variety of bidet suites available in-store, and can also supply seats with bidet functions to retrofit existing toilets. Drop us a line or head into one of our showrooms if you’d like to know more.

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Source:  Kohler

Our next Plumbing Terms blog will focus on Tapware & Mixers, so stay tuned for more on how to talk reno.