How our toilets have changed

How our toilets have changed over the years

There was a time when flushing the toilet also meant flushing an assortment of unmentionables down the bowl including tampons, sanitary napkins and babies items, and the system seemed designed to dispose everything without a murmur of protest. Undoubtedly, such practices were generally bad news for the septic tank attached to homes, and the corporation wouldn’t have been too kindly to picking up the pieces in clogged drains and sewers and clearing main sewer lines that created back flow issues. But today’s toilets are designed differently to conform to higher standards of efficiency and may not tolerate the homeowner’s indifferent and negligent attitude any longer. For the casual observer it would appear that the modern toilet has lost some of its flushing power compared to its sturdier ancestors, though that is certainly not the case.

The concept of gravity pull and its connection with toilet waste disposal

f85e930766d05c77f142a7a68b0dc031Modern toilets rely largely on the idea of gravity exerting a down ward pull on wastes, enabling the smooth passage of water and waste down the toilet bowl and drain. When you press the toilet flushing lever, a valve gently opens enabling the release of water stored in the drainage tank. The water courses downwards into the toilet bowl under the pull of gravity. The North American system has inbuilt larger siphon like jet and rim openings that capitalize on the downward action of gravity to force water through the aperture, gathering enough speed and motion to flush the contents of the bowl through the drain. The power generated by the water squeezing through the siphon would be forceful enough to ensure that trapped air bubbles are ejected and the water and waste cleared within seconds.

The difference between old and new systems is that the new generation toilet does the job at a fraction of the water dispensing power of the storage tank. Less water does more work than in older systems. At one stroke you are avoiding wastage of precious water, and performing waste disposal with greater efficiency. New tanks also come with adjustable water markings enabling the user to manipulate the power of water flushing.

Keeping solids and other unmentionables out of the toilet

If the user is careful and maintains his toilet well, he may never encounter a clog, but clogs do occur despite the best maintenance efforts. A clogged drain calls for the skilled use of the plunger. Of course, prevention also implies that you will be extra watchful in ensuring nothing solid, which doesn’t belong in a toilet drain, is pushed through the bowl. It must be ensured that only bodily waste and toilet tissue paper enters the bowl, and not solid materials that the system is not designed to handle. By solid wastes we mean baby diapers, plastic toys, lady’s sanitary napkins, or hand wipes composed of rougher material for which the ideal dumping destination is the trash can. It is equally important not to allow even toilet paper to remain unflushed in bowls as that can create the grounds for clogs and drainage backflows.

Trying the compressed air toilet to generate stronger flushing power

It is obvious that the gravity operated toilet will live within its limitations unless you overload the system with solid wastes that do not belong in a toilet drain. If you are not completely satisfied with the toilet’s flushing power, or if waste is not getting cleared with the efficiency you desire, it may be the right moment to try the power-assist toilet. Such toilets use the pressure generated by compressed air to flush the bowl. In most cases, the pressure in the home water supply pipes, and the pressure exerted by the water accumulating in the overhead storage tank would be enough to give optimum ballast to speed up the power-assist mechanism. Such tanks sweat less but generate a fair bit of sound, and they can lean on the expensive side, but your flushing action will be forceful, and drains will remain clog free for longer periods.

Exploring a whole new range of specialized toilets

Life need not end with gravity toilets and power-assist toilets, and there are several exciting options in the market that cater to more refined habits and toilet customs. One example is the bidet-toilet combo where you get a wash after the bowl is flushed clean. Additionally, you receive a gust of warm air that dries you up. Luxury fittings could include a built in heater that warms the toilet seat, and discreetly positioned air purifiers that freshen up the toilet when you use it. There are also toilets that flush automatically when the lid is pressed shut.

Catering to aesthetics and ambiance, the humble toilet now comes in an exciting range of shapes and sizes and colors that lend style and elegance to home decor. You can also get customized toilets that fit neatly into triangular corners. Veritably, the simple toilet performing the most basic of human functions has undergone a remarkable transformation, and added style, substance and value to our lives, subtly enhancing our comfort and convenience.

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