Eco-friendly toilets are becoming a priority in homes and commercial properties because they offer an easy and immediate way to save water. This is particularly true in regions where drought and water shortages are a serious concern.
Toilets Account for Most Household Water Usage
Estimates vary, but on average each American uses between 80-100 gallons of water per day. Along with preventing and repairing leaks, the easiest way for most homeowners to conserve water is to install high-efficiency toilets.
Toilets are the main source of water use in American homes, accounting for about one-third of monthly water usage. Replacing an old inefficient toilet with a modern water-saving one can quickly result in significant savings. For example, if you currently have a 5-gallon per flush toilet and replace it with a 1.2-gallon toilet, based on 10 flushes per day, you’ll save 13,505 gallons of water per year.
Toilet models made before 1994 used up to 7 gallons of water per flush. Since 1994, low-flow toilets that use 1.6 gallons per flush or less have been the federal standard. The EPA estimates that replacing an old toilet with a more water-efficient model can cut water usage by 20-60% and save the average homeowner around $140 per year.
With innovations in water-saving technologies, it’s easy to cut back on water consumption without sacrificing performance. High-efficiency toilets flush just as well or better than older conventional toilets. Although two-piece toilets have been in use since the inception of modern plumbing, there are other options to consider when it’s time to replace your toilet.
While a traditional two-piece toilet consists of a separate tank and bowl that are connected with bolts, a one-piece toilet has a tank and bowl that are permanently fused together. Homeowners often choose them for their sleek design but they have practical benefits as well.
They are easier to clean and sanitize since they have fewer nooks and crannies for germs to hide in. These toilets are also less prone to leaks. Traditional two-piece toilets often begin to leak in the area where the tank and bowl meet as the rubber gasket between them begins to deteriorate.
Most residential tank-style toilets are gravity-feed toilets that flush when water in the tank is released after pressing the handle. Tankless toilets have no water storage units attached to them.
These toilets pull water directly from the household plumbing system when it's time to flush. They have a modern appearance, work well in small bathroom spaces, and, since they are wall-mounted, allow for the height of the seat to be customized during the installation process.
Dual-flush toilets are designed with maximum water efficiency in mind. This style is already popular in drought-prone areas around the world and is gaining popularity in the United States.
Traditional toilets use the same amount of water to flush both liquid and solid waste. Dual-flush toilets typically use around half a gallon of water to flush liquid waste and about 1.5 gallons of water for solid waste offering significant water savings.
Regardless of what style you choose, opt for a WaterSense toilet. The EPA’s WaterSense label indicates that a toilet is 20 percent more water-efficient than conventional 1.6-gallon toilets. In other words, a WaterSense toilet will use about 1.28 gallons of water per flush which increases water savings and lowers your water bill even more.
Replacing old toilets saves water and lowers your utility costs. If you are dealing with persistent toilet issues, it may be time to consider replacing it with a modern, high-efficiency model. There are many water-saving toilets on the market and selecting the right one can be a complicated process.
Can You Replace a Toilet Yourself?
You may be tempted to save some money and replace an old toilet yourself. The average DIYer is often surprised by how complicated a toilet replacement can be.
Toilets come in a wide variety of models and simply swapping out an old toilet for a new one isn’t always easy. Older homes often have non-standard rough-in measurements, so it’s important to measure carefully to ensure whatever toilet you select fits into the space.
If you choose a toilet that requires plumbing modifications, installation costs will quickly rise. Before purchasing a new toilet, consult with a professional plumbing expert. They’ll be able to tell you what models are best for your needs and your budget.
Professional plumbers know how to safely remove an old toilet, repair or replace any necessary plumbing connections, and install a new toilet correctly. Incorrect toilet installation can lead to a variety of plumbing problems including leaks, slow flushing, or a wobbly toilet. Hiring a professional plumber ensures the job is done efficiently and correctly the first time.
Choose a Professional Plumber to Install the Best Toilet
For all of your plumbing needs in the Los Gatos area, call Simply Green Plumbing, Sewer & Rooter at (408) 716-1686, or contact us online to schedule an appointment.
We can help you choose the toilet that works best for your situation. Our Los Gatos technicians have over 30 years of plumbing experience and they are ready to help you with all of your plumbing problems no matter how big or small.