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How to choose the perfect toilet

A toilet is one of the most important items of bathroom suites and sanitaryware, yet many householders aren't aware of all the different toilet types available on the market.

In this guide we'll look at three of the most popular toilet types, all of which are affordable and can be installed in a domestic property, creating a striking and modern bathroom aesthetic.

Are there different types of toilet seats?

Just as there are different types of toilets, there are also different types of toilet seats. The biggest factor in this is the shape of the toilet pan, which may be round/oval, D-shaped or a square/rectangular shape with curved corners.

Because of this, it's important to get a toilet seat that fits. You should also check the measurement between the fixing holes, and the availability of access to secure the seat underneath the toilet pan rather than from above.

Most mainstream toilet seats won’t be difficult to replace, so if you decide to upgrade to a soft-closing lid at a later date, it should be easy to find one that fits. 

Lifting the lid on different types of toilets

Now we've got the question of toilet seats out of the way, we can look at the main types of toilets available on the market. In this guide we've left out vintage and retro toilets where the cistern is mounted high on the wall - we're just looking at the main modern options.

closed couple toilets

Close-coupled toilets

When you think of a traditional modern toilet, you're likely to picture a close-coupled toilet. The 'couple' in the name is the pairing of the toilet pan and the cistern, and you'll usually find the cistern is mounted immediately over the pan.

The whole toilet can stand on the floor, although it's common to have an element of wall mounting for extra stability. The cistern remains visible and the flush mechanism is usually fixed directly to the cistern, too.

Installation of close-coupled toilets is easy, as they don't need to be integrated into the wall and if necessary, their pipework can remain visible. They also make it easy to position your soil pipe wherever you want, which can have aesthetic benefits for the outside of your property.

Overall, the close-coupled toilet is a modern-day hero that is likely to remain the go-to choice for many properties for the foreseeable future. 

Wall mounted toilets

Wall mounted toilets are among the most modern designs and give the illusion that the toilet pan is hovering some distance from the floor, with the rear side of the bowl mounted directly to the wall.

The cistern is hidden away somewhere nearby, just as with a back to wall toilet. The only real difference is that a wall mounted toilet does not have a visible pedestal to support it from underneath.

In order to allow this, the toilet bowl is mounted using a sturdy supporting frame built into the wall immediately behind it. The work to do this is more extensive, but the finished effect gives one of the most contemporary bathroom aesthetics.
When a wall mounted toilet is installed properly, it can support as much as 200kg. This should allow for the body weight of the vast majority of people, and gives the best illusion of space in a small bathroom or en suite.

Back to wall toilets

A back to wall toilet looks similar to a close-coupled toilet at first glance, but on closer inspection you'll realise that the cistern is missing. In fact, it is usually hidden nearby, behind a wall panel or inside an item of furniture.

The cistern still takes up some space, but its’ position can be more carefully chosen, and by hiding it away you can create the illusion of more room thanks to the uncluttered appearance of the toilet pan.

It's worth noting that the pan itself typically still stands on the floor and is mounted both into the floorboards for stability and against the wall or bathroom cabinet it's placed up against.
With the floor providing stability in this way, it makes installation easy. The cistern must be hidden away in its’ new home, but the pan itself needs bolting down and plumbing in.

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