2023 Toilet Buying Guide

New-build toilet or replacement toilet, you’ll be counting on the one that you choose for the next decade or two. Think for a moment about all the toilets you’ve dreaded—the ones that barely flushed, that were uncomfortable, that just never looked clean, that were an odd color or that clogged all the time. The challenge is to avoid all of those and find the one that will keep your bathroom high-functioning, clean and beautiful. Here are a few basics to consider.

Types of Toilets

Toilets have traditionally been two-piece units consisting of a tank bolted and sealed to a bowl that is mounted to the floor with two bolts. However, toilets are also available as one-piece floor-mounted units as well as wall-mounted units that conceal the tank behind the wall, seating it between the studs. A whole other category of toilets has also been developing—smart toilets featuring advanced features tailored to personal care and hygiene. Each offers its own advantages and installation requirements.

Rough-in Distance

For a leak-proof installation, a toilet’s trap—the bowl’s exit—must line up with the drain that carries away waste. Since toilets are usually placed against the wall, the rough-in distance for a floor-mounted toilet is the measurement from the wall to the toilet’s two bolts that attach it to the floor. Those two bolts usually sit to either side of the trap outside its diameter. Note that the rough-in distance measurement is taken from the wall itself, avoiding trim or baseboard. The rough-in dimension for most floor-mounted toilets is 12 inches. However, some designs may be as short as 10 inches or as long as 14.

Bowl Shape and Size

Toilets have either round-front bowls or elongated bowls. Toilets with round-front bowls take up less space but are often considered less comfortable. Toilets with elongated bowls are often only about two inches longer than a typical round-front bowl, but the extra space typically makes them more comfortable. Some manufacturers offer a compact elongated bowl with an elongated shape but a shorter dimension. Always make sure that your bathroom, its cabinetry doors and drawers, and other fixtures will be able to accommodate the toilet and its bowl with sufficient clearance.

Flushing Systems

The flush is the whole reason for a toilet. A powerful flush is desirable because it gets the job done the first time. However, the flush can be achieved in a number of ways.

  • Siphonic—The most common toilet in residential use, siphonic-flush toilets create a pull to draw waste down the S- or P-shaped trapway and into the drain rather than relying strictly on gravity. Siphon jet toilets use the holes along the rim to cleanse the bowl but also have a siphon jet in the lower front of the bowl that shoots water into the trapway to create a siphon effect to pull waste from the bowl.
  • Single and Double Flush—Some toilet systems offer the option of a lighter flush for liquid waste and a double-flush feature for solid waste. The lighter flush uses the least amount of water needed, while the double flush uses more to ensure the flush thoroughly clears the bowl.
  • Double Cyclone—A relatively new technology, cyclone-flush toilets use two powerful jet nozzles to create a strong bowl-cleaning swirl. One is typically near the rim, while the other sits lower in the bowl.
  • Pressure-Assisted—Some toilets add air into the mix to create a more powerful flush. A sealed mini-pressure tank in the toilet tank traps air and compresses it as the tank fills with water. When it releases a flush, waste shoots around the bowl and down the drain. These toilets are noted for water efficiency but can be noisier than other systems.
  • Up-Flush—Up-flush toilets offer an option for areas of a home or property where plumbing is otherwise lacking or would be difficult to install. Up-flush toilets send waste into a macerator that processes it and then pumps it into the home’s main line.

Best Toilet for 2023

TOTO has been working for nearly a century to give the world cleaner, healthier bathrooms. The TOTO brand is synonymous with quality and includes not only toilets but also tubs, showers, lavatories and faucets. While TOTO offers a range of advanced technologies in toilets—including the Washlet and Washlet+ bidet toilets as well as the Neorest smart toilet—it also offers a highly efficient, affordable residential toilet that everyone will want to use. The model is the TOTO Entrada, and it’s a two-piece floor-mounted toilet with an elongated bowl and a strong, reliable flush.

  • To create a more powerful flush, TOTO’s E-Max system combines a wide, three-inch valve, an extra-large siphon jet and a generous 2⅛-inch trapway. The wider flush valve releases more water at a time, and the extra-large siphon jet at the front of the bowl shoots water into the trapway, clearing the bowl with a strong siphon effect. The result is a powerful flush every time.
  • Highly efficient, the Entrada uses just 1.28 gallons per flush.
  • The elongated bowl offers comfortable seating, measuring 18½ inches from the seat bolts to the front of the bowl. The edge of the bowl extends 28⅝ inches from the wall.
  • Universal height puts the Entrada’s seat height at 17¼ inches high—a manageable height that makes bathroom fixtures accessible to all people.
  • The Entrada is available with either a left- or right-hand lever.
  • In total, the unit is 30 inches high and about 15 inches wide.
  • The rough-in distance from the wall to the floor bolts is a standard 12 inches.
  • The Entrada comes in two colors—cotton and Sedona beige.
  • The seat with a soft-close lid is available separately.

The TOTO Entrada offers a simple, clean aesthetic with the powerful yet quiet flush that you want in your home. TOTO is also a brand committed to creating products that are eco-friendly, conserve water and are ADA-compliant.

Whether you’re building a new home or overhauling an older one, Coburn’s is ready to help you find the perfect toilet and other fixtures for your bathroom and living areas. Drop by your nearest Coburn’s Kitchen & Bath Showroom location with your questions and ideas. We’d love to hear from you.