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High Efficiency Toilets- Looks and Performance

Written by Mark March, IRR Supply Centers, Inc.
Imagery by Kohler

Depending on when your home was built, the toilet in your home may be the most inefficient and costly of any fixture or appliance. Why? Because it depends on how many gallons of water per flush your toilet uses.

Most homes use either a 5 GPF (Gallons per Flush), 3.5 GPF, or1.6 GPF system. In the last couple years, new 1.28 GPF toilets have emerged. These High Efficiency Toilets (HET) are now mandated in some states and municipalities. Depending on the amount of water used in your current toilet, you may save anywhere from 20% (1.6 GPF) to as much as 74% (5 GPF) vs. an HET that utilizes 1.28 gallons per flush.

It’s normal to think that the more water used, the better the performance. This was true in the past, but with enhanced designs and rigorous mandates on High Efficiency Toilets and water conservation, flushing performance has never been better.

Regardless of which brand you choose, there are two important factors that must be considered – performance and appearance  – and neither should be sacrificed. Most manufacturers use independent testing agencies to rate their toilets based upon MaP tests, which is “Maximum Performance.”

These standard performance tests rate bulk waste removal in a single flush. The performance range is from 350 to 1,000 grams. Lean toward High Efficiency Toilets that are rated closer to 1,000 grams. Why have a water-saving toilet if you have to flush it twice?

The other consideration is appearance. There are a multitude of shapes, sizes, designs and colors available to meet the design component of your bath or powder room. Many HETs are available that will complement and enhance your needs. Depending on your vision for the room, balance its features with the aesthetics of the fixtures.

Whether you like Do-It-Yourself projects or you use a professional and insured plumber, consider the cost savings of thousands of gallons of water per year that you would save with a High Efficient Toilet. Be an educated consumer and smart homeowner. The payback on your investment will be realized quickly.

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