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A water-efficient toilet has been designed to use 6L of water or less per flush and can be installed in any

home, apartment, business or industrial space.

Green home improvements are by far one of the biggest trends going on right now and many projects
have to do with energy and resource conservation. One of the most popular and easiest projects to take
on is replacing water-guzzling toilets for newer, water-efficient models.

Older models, from thirty years ago, could use up more than 20L of water in one flush. Innovations in
the 1990’s, introduced a new model that needed only 13L of water. The push for water conservation
has introduced the latest version of toilets which have reduced the flush capacity to 6L or less.

Figure 1 – Standard Toilet upgraded to dual flush capabilities


Gravity: This type is found in most residences still using the older single flush
models. The bowl of the toilet has been designed with improved siphoning
(when water is pulled out) action.

Vacuum-Assist: Similar to gravity type toilets but are aided by a mechanism,


found in the tank, which acts a vacuum in the trapway when a toilet is flushed.

Types of Pressure-Assist: These toilets do not have flappers and rely on pressure in order
to create a strong flush. This is done with compressed air, trapped inside tank,
Water-Efficient forcing the water down into the bowl “pushing out” waste material.
Toilets
Dual Flush: While relatively new to North American, this type of water-efficient
toilet is probably the most familiar. These toilets allow the user to flush liquid
water with a 3L flush or solid waste with a 6L flush.

High Efficient Toilets (HET): Generally are single flush and can be pressure-
assisted but use 20% less water than 6L toilet – meaning that then a single flush
uses 4.8L of water. Some models even use less.

Water Consumption
Litres used by a person yearly

27 000 L

14 000 L
8 900 L

Standard Toilet Low Flow Toilet High Efficiency Toilet

Figure 2 – Water Consumption by Toilet

The older model toilets with a 13L flush can wastes as much as 27 000 L a year
per person. Water consumptions drops dramatically with the use of water-
efficient toilets. The low-flow models, which use 6L, only use up 14 000L a year
per person while HETs use only 8 900L. Total water conservation varies from
Water Savings person to person due to the frequency of flushes.

For a family of four, this allows you to save up to 80 000L of water by using low-
flow. If your residence is on a water meter this can mean a savings of $100 or
more a year.
There is a common misconception that many of the low flow toilets are not as
efficient as they claim to be. The most common complaint is that it takes several
flushes in order to clear the toilet -it is true that first generation of 6L toilets did
in fact perform poorly. However, newer models, which have been re-designed,
are far superior in performance.

Misconceptions Many dual flush and high efficiency toilets cost more than standard 13L toilets.
A water-saving model can cost as little as $70 more than a standard toilet,
And Possible however, the price can go as high as $1 000 depending on design, performance
Downsides and any extra features it may have. If you are on a water meter, the cost of a
new water-efficient toilet can be recouped within 7 to 10 years.

Issues arise with cleanliness in water-efficient toilets because they employ less
water. As there is less standing water in the bowl, there is a possibility that more
residue and odors can form and therefore require more regular cleaning than
standard models.

Many municipal, provincial and federal government programs offer incentive


programs in order to help those wishing to change to water-efficient toilets.
For example the city of Toronto offers between $60 and $75 to replace your
Rebate toilet with one of their city-approved water-efficient models.
Opportunities
To learn more, the internet is a great place to find what rebates are offered by
your city or province or water conservation programs available in your area. You
may also call your city or water meter company for more information.

Purchasing of low flow and high efficiency toilets is quite easy now that the
green home improvement trend is in full swing. You can find them at most
places that sell bathroom and plumbing fixtures or purchase them at well known
store such as:

Purchase Home Depot


And Réno Dépôt
Installation Rona

Installation can be made in any residence, commercial or industrial building, as


long as the appropriate rough-in exists. In general, the average or skilled
handyperson can swap out their own toilets for the new dual flush and high
efficiency models in order to keep costs down.

Water-efficient toilets are a great way to reduce water consumption in the household and therefore
help save the environment. You may also save money by reducing your water bill or by receiving rebates
through government programs. The benefits far outweigh the possible downsides and these
technologically-advance toilets can be installed anywhere by the average handyperson.