Archive for January 20th, 2009

Toilet talk

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

If it’s yellow

Let it mellow

If it’s brown

Flush it down

I must admit that I don’t make a practise of following that old water conservation slogan.  If I tried it, someone in my house would have a talk with me.

However I do feel somewhat guilty about using 13 litres of municipally-treated water each time I tinkle (which happens more frequently since I turned 50 than it used to).  Water conservation is an important part of natural resource stewardship.  Not to speak of saving money.

So when I found out that the Saskatchewan Watershed Authority is willing to pay me $50 per toilet to replace my old porcelain thrones with new low-flush (6-litre) or dual-flush (6-litre and 3-litre) models, I decided to look into what dual-flush models are available.  Since I was in Saskatoon on Saturday anyway, it was a good excuse to browse through Home Depot.

Unfortunately I was still thinking in mid 1990s prices, from the last time we replaced a toilet.  I’m sure we paid less than $100 for a basic model at that time. On Saturday the only dual-flush toilet that Home Depot had in stock was selling for just under $300 before taxes.  The $50 rebate would help, but I’m still having trouble with the cost of replacing the three toilets in our house.

Apparently there are technical factors to consider when buying a low-flush toilet – such as whether the trap is glazed, or only the bowl itself is glazed.  It makes sense that the brown stuff would clog less in a nice slippery glazed trap than in a rough-surfaced trap, but I admit I had never pondered that fact.  The news story at the link above says a good model would cost in the $400-$600 range.

I guess the $300 toilet at Home Depot must have an unglazed trap.

However it seems to me that it would take a lot of low-flushes to justify the extra cost of a more poop-friendly model.

Lots to think about.  The research will continue.  Meanwhile any practical toilet advice would be appreciated.

(Please excuse my potty-mouth language in this post – I’ll try to get my mind out of the sewer before my next post)