- Construction types
- Cistern – device
- Toilet bowl – types of construction
- Toilet flush system
- Sewer outlet from the toilet bowl
- Materials from which the toilet bowl is made
- At the end
In this Article: Options for Positioning the Drain Tank floor and hanging toilet bowls; drain tank fittings; types of toilet bowl design; flush systems; position of the outlet in relation to the floor; materials from which toilet bowls are made and their characteristics.
Without any doubt, it is impossible to do without a plumbing fixture, called a toilet bowl or a water closet, in any apartment, because every morning the household begins with a visit to the bathroom. Modern plumbing is diverse in brands, manufacturers and designs, which confuses the buyer – I propose to find out what types of toilets are produced and how they differ from each other, in addition to their price. This article will help you visit a plumbing store and make an informed purchase..
Over the past 100 years, global manufacturers of sanitary ware have developed several types of toilet bowls designed for both large and small spaces. Water closets can be floor-standing and suspended, combined with a cistern and separate, have several ways of water outlet and flush, differ in the shape of the bowl and its dimensions, in the design of the waste discharge. In addition, in their production, various materials are used, which largely determine the cost of the device..
Floor-standing toilets are installed on the floor, attached to it with self-tapping screws for concrete or self-tapping screws with a plug-plug. There are four types of floor-standing toilets on the market, mainly differing from each other in the place of installation of the cistern:
- the tank is attached to the wall under the ceiling, it is connected to the toilet by a long plastic or metal pipe, the water drain is controlled by a handle hanging from the tank on a chain. This arrangement refers to the classic, developed more than 100 years ago, it has one serious advantage – compared to modern models of plumbing fixtures, the high flow rate of water when it is drained from the ceiling cistern provides a more efficient flush with equal water consumption;
- the “compact” model has a monolithic or additional shelf, on which a cistern is located, attached to the shelf with a bolt connection – for example, the German Duravit toilet bowls represent a series of models of this design. Compact water closets can be installed both at a distance from the wall and close to it. Toilets of this type are widespread in the CIS, because toilets of houses and apartments in the times of the USSR were completed only with them;
- a hidden cistern is installed in the cavity of a false wall, its capacity is usually made of plastic, fastening inside the wall is carried out using the frame installation method, water drainage is push-button control – buttons are brought out to the surface of the wall above the toilet;
- the toilet bowls are placed close to the wall, the cistern for them is built into the wall. There are models without a tank – flushing is performed with a stream of tap water without preliminary accumulation.
The bowls of wall-hung toilet bowls are located above the floor surface, without touching it, which greatly facilitates cleaning the floors in the bathroom, which is also equipped with shower cabins, such as the Ido Showerama model of the Finnish company Ido. There are two ways to install such plumbing fixtures – frame and block. The frame installation, rigidly attached to the floor and wall (the load falls entirely on the floor), is intended for fixing a wall-mounted toilet bowl in non-bearing (false) walls – it consists of a metal frame, to which, in addition to the toilet bowl, fittings and pipes are attached. With the help of the block installation frame, the wall-hung toilet bowl as well as pipes and fittings are mounted on the load-bearing wall. In both cases, the frames are sewn up with plasterboard or plastic; the false wall is 100–150 mm away from the installation, ie. actual space savings can only be achieved if the metal frame is installed in an existing false wall. Despite the seeming unreliability, the hanging water closet can easily support weight up to 400 kg.
Flushing in a wall-hung toilet is realized in two ways – with the help of a cistern hidden in the wall or due to water pressure in the plumbing system. The flush control is push-button, to get access to the drain system, dismantling of the casing is not required – you just need to remove the panel with buttons.
Each and any model of a floor-standing or wall-hung toilet is equipped with a siphon – a hydraulic seal that prevents the penetration of gases from the city sewer system into houses and apartments.
Cistern – device
The operating characteristics of the tank are determined by the design of the valves installed inside its tank. Any flush tank is equipped with two types of fittings – the first is responsible for collecting water, the second is responsible for draining it.
There are two types of water intake fittings:
- fittings located at the top of the drain tank. This design and its location are typical for inexpensive domestic-made toilets. The drain control knob is located either on the tank lid or on the side, the water inflow is accompanied by a rather loud noise;
- fittings located at the bottom of the tank completely avoid the noise of water when filling the tank, since the liquid enters the already existing volume of water without any splash. Such fittings are used in plumbing fixtures, both domestic and imported..
The drain valve mechanism releases water from the tank either by pulling the stem handle, or by pressing a button located on the tank lid or, in case of hidden installation, on the wall. The armature with a handle-rod has a simple design; it is equipped with domestic toilet bowls of the budget segment. The armature, controlled by a button, is completely hidden inside the cistern, and all imported sanitary ware is equipped with it. There is a push-button fittings that allow flushing in two modes – economical (half the contents of the tank are consumed) and full (water from the tank is completely discharged). Two modes of water discharge are realized under the control of two or one button, in the latter version, the degree of emptying the tank depends on the intensity of pressing the button.
Toilet bowl – types of construction
The degree of comfort, functionality and hygienic characteristics of this model of sanitary ware depends on its shape. It should be borne in mind that toilets from different manufacturers, which at first glance have the same bowl design, actually differ, albeit in small details – however, it is these differences that seriously affect the performance of the device..
There are three main types of toilets with bowls on the Russian market:
- poppet (shelf) – has a flat platform protruding above the drain hole located in the depth of the front side of the bowl. The advantages of this form are the absence of splashes and the ability to monitor the state of the human excretory system by defecation products. The disadvantages of a dish-shaped bowl lie in its insufficient hygiene, since human waste products enter the drain hole only after being flushed with a stream of water. In addition, the water constantly present on the surface of the platform shelf will eventually cause the accumulation of salt deposits, which are rather difficult to eliminate;
- funnel-shaped – the drain hole is located in the center of a funnel-shaped bowl. The advantages of a funnel bowl are its high hygienic characteristics, since defecation products do not linger on the walls and immediately enter the drain hole. The drawback of toilets with funnel-shaped bowls is one, but noticeable – it will not be possible to avoid splashes when visiting the toilet “for the most part”;
- visor (Finnish) – the most successful design solution, which incorporates the advantages of the bowls of the first two types and does not have their disadvantages. On the back wall of the bowl, there is a short ledge with a slope towards the drain hole, which does not prevent waste products from entering the drain and blocks any splash..
Models of modern floor-standing and wall-mounted toilets are represented by funnel-shaped and visor-shaped bowls. It is for this model range that the sanitary products of the largest European manufacturers are intended, incl. Grohe sanitary ware produced by one of the oldest German companies.
Toilet flush system
In modern plumbing fixtures, two flush systems are implemented – a cascade (horizontal) and a circular (shower). In the first version, the flow of water is directed linearly along the inner wall of the bowl, in the second, it is divided into several jets pouring out along the entire perimeter of the toilet bowl rim, directed both at right angles to the rim and at sharp ones. The cascade flush system is simpler, therefore it has a long service life, its disadvantage is the inability of a direct flow of water to wash all the inner surfaces of the bowl, which requires more frequent cleaning of the toilet.
A circular flush system is more effective in cleaning the toilet bowl from dirt, draining water in it is accompanied by significantly less noise than with a horizontal flush. The disadvantages of a shower flush are associated with the higher cost of plumbing fixtures equipped with it, and due to the small diameter of the drain holes and in hard water conditions, their overgrowth with salt deposits is inevitable, which over time seriously complicates and even completely blocks flushing.
Sewer outlet from the toilet bowl
Models differ with horizontal (straight), vertical and oblique (inclination angle 30-45 °) outlets.
Toilets with horizontal outlet are popular in European countries, the outlet channel in them is located on the back of the bowl and is clearly visible, its axial direction is parallel to the floor surface or at a slight angle to it. In design, they are similar to today’s obsolete models that have an oblique outlet, however, it is possible to connect the horizontal branch pipe with a sewer riser designed for an oblique outlet only by means of transition pipes, as a result of which the toilet will move even more to the center of the bathroom. The horizontal and oblique position of the branch pipe in relation to the floor is caused by the wiring of sewer risers and sunbeds, typical for European countries and post-Soviet states – their pipes were usually laid along the walls along the ceiling or were inserted into communication shafts that penetrate multi-storey buildings vertically.
The vertical outlet pipe, which is equipped with toilet bowls, usually installed in the countries of South and North America, is completely invisible – it is hidden by the floor. This design of the outlet allows you to install a plumbing fixture anywhere in the room – even close to the wall, even in the center of the room, you only need to enter the sewer lounger. The reasons why toilets with vertical release are common in the countries of both Americas, again, are related to the peculiarities of the installation of utilities in these countries – they are laid under ceilings, not connected to the walls, after which they are sheathed with various materials or covered with a suspended ceiling.
Sewer systems, inlets to which are intended for toilets with a vertical outlet, are found today in houses built around the 50s of the last century. Under the oblique outlet, the inputs of risers and sun loungers in buildings built from the beginning of the 70s to the 90s are calculated, and the houses built over the past 20 years are equipped with sewer inlets for a horizontal outlet.
Materials from which the toilet bowl is made
The classic sanitary materials are ceramics and metal, belonging to the Art Nouveau trend – glass, natural and artificial stone, as well as plastic. Consider the characteristics of each of these materials.
Ceramic toilets, made of earthenware or porcelain, with the external similarity of materials, have different operational characteristics. Faience bowls of sanitary fixtures, despite a number of technological operations that reduce porosity and increase strength, absorb moisture and dirt in pores, which makes them difficult to clean. In addition, earthenware has high fragility, expressed by the formation of cracks and chips in products made from it..
Porcelain toilets are superior to earthenware products in all respects – they are durable, easy to clean, and difficult to damage. The only drawback of porcelain is its high cost, but otherwise this material is excellent..
Metal and cast iron plumbing products are most often installed in public washrooms. Steel toilet bowls are easy to clean, they are highly resistant to mechanical damage, but they are quite expensive. Compared to steel sanitary ware, models made of cast iron are seriously inferior, because have a high weight and quickly disintegrate enamel layer.
Stone toilet bowls, made from natural or artificial marble, have an equally attractive appearance, their surfaces are smooth, thanks to which they are easy to clean and do not allow microorganisms to settle on them. Products made from natural stone have two drawbacks – they are expensive and do not resist mechanical damage poorly. Compared to them, artificial stone toilet bowls benefit from strength, lower weight and lower cost..
Plastic models, when compared with toilets made of any other material (except glass), have the highest hygienic characteristics – the surfaces of acrylic bowls reinforced with fiberglass have no pores at all and do not absorb moisture. The disadvantages of plastic products are associated with low resistance to high temperatures and susceptibility to mechanical damage.
At the end
Inexpensive models of floor-standing toilets (price – from 2,500 rubles) are presented on the Russian market by domestic manufacturers, the middle price range (from 7,000 to 20,000 rubles) – by products of Polish, Czech and Finnish plumbing factories. The most expensive (more than 20,000 rubles) are products of German, Swedish, Italian and Austrian manufacturers, characterized by high performance and made of expensive materials..
The choice of this or that model from three price segments, first of all, depends on the size of the bathroom and the position of the input pipe connecting the toilet to the sewer system. By the type of bowl design, the models of the visor structure are the most optimal, the circular drainage system for the Russian water supply system is suitable only if the diameter of the drain holes is 10 mm or more – otherwise the choice is up to the buyer.