By “advanced” I mean a surface that sheds everything better than good old porcelain. Especially now with low-flow toilets, where the actual pool of water is only 2 or 3 inches across instead of 9 or 10 inches, so that at least some poo is bound to hit porcelain instead of dropping in the water. Some of that poo washes off when the toilet is flushed, but not all of it. One doesn’t save as much water as one thinks, if one has to scrub out the inside of the toilet every day and then flush the loosened bits down.
So is modern technology not up to the job? With the millions of toilets replaced every year (no research, just guessing) the cost of research could be spread out, not to mention that you could probably charge more for this feature.
Requirements: whatever it is has to be inert, and to last for a very long time. It really should be a characteristic of the material itself rather than added on. That’s what I want to see before I die.
There is something weird about the shape of a toilet; why was it designed to narrow at that point? Was water conservation always in mind?
As well as materials, and the shape, I guess something could be done with power (and the power could come from the “operator”) like the water in the bowl could swirl or material could be directed with air blades say. As well as making poop touch the sides less, I think other efficiencies like making toilets less likely to block could also be found.
At the end of the day, it’s just not a sexy area for innovation. Outside of Japan, consumers don’t <pause for comic timing…> give a shit.
The shape of the bowl is carefully engineered to create the greatest pressure differential between the trap and the surface patch.
The thing to remember is that a toilet doesn’t force the water and contents down via a flush. It sets up a siphon which sucks everything down into the trap and let’s gravity take over from there.
I wonder how long they’ve had that available here in the US. Ours are about 10 years old.
Do you clean your own toilet? Do you keep it fit for company to use? I think there are lots of people who care. The problem really is, I think, that it’s not a sexy thing to advertise. Toilet sales depends on word of mouth, and the recommendations of plumbers and contractors, who tend to recommend the cheapest because they’re “all the same.”
I remember seeing a tour of a toilet construction research facility on This Old House several years ago (not Toto, probably). What I remember seeing was all about how to get large volumes of solid matter to flush without incident. not how to keep stuff from sticking to the surface.
I have an incinolet, it has these sort of glossy surface paper inserts one puts into the bowl, does ones bodily functions, then use a foot pedal to drop the contents into the base and hit a button that starts the incineration process. Uses 110v household current and has a vent to the outside. No water involved, though I do have a mist bottle and I periodically spritz and papertowel wipe the inside and seating areas and burn the towel, and use an alcohol based towelette [ok, it is actually designed to clean computer screens, but it is pretty decently sized for a sanitizing wipedown without hosing chlorine everywhere]
This is actually installed in the spare closet in the sleeping end of the top floor of our barn, we had an arsonist burn the house down, so we moved into the studio in the barn. Unfortunately the bathroom is on the ground floor, and the living space the top floor [don’t ask.] WHen my body decided to gift me with colorectal cancer on top of physical handicap, making a run for the bathroom involves a 30 foot crutching hobble across to the stairs, down the stairs then a 15 foot hobble into the bathroom. When one has diarrhea, this means a trail of poop. Not good. But knowing about incinolets, and having a spare closet, installing one 7 feet from the bed works. I use baby wipes for my hands, and now I poop in a bag, all I do the old fashioned way is pee, poop gets gently dumped into the cone, so no messy diarrhea. [actually, diarrhea with a bag is amazingly easy, just need to make sure to dump it or change the bag out when it gets full. No more desperation at finding a toilet, or being afraid to leave the house =) ]
Anywhere that water is in shortage, I would seriously recommend an incinolet - makes all your outgoing water grey water, which can be filtered and used to water the lawn =) or I suppose in a pinch, run through a reverse osmotic filter after particulate filtration and chemically treated back into drinking and cooking water.
You can leave the tap running in a sink, not so for a toilet. Maybe you have a different style of toilet than we have here but they won’t overflow until after at least one flush, so your warning is flushing and noting that the water doesn’t go down.
Purely from reading this forum, I get the impression that US toilets ‘clog’ more than UK ones. Does anyone know why? Are the waste pipes smaller? A standard toilet waste pipe in the UK is 100mm in diameter.
When we were in Turkey a few years ago we were advised to put used TP in the bin provided because they use smaller pipes and they clog frequently.
Well I was putting it in a slightly glib way, but what I meant was that most people don’t care enough to go through the hassle of installing a new toilet. Here in the UK, getting an expert tradesman to do work in your home is painfully expensive.
And a fancy toilet won’t particularly add to the value of a home. So all together, there’s little consumer pressure for them to improve.
That’s worth exploring.
I’m a fellow Brit, I’d say my home toilet clogs maybe once every 1-2 years.
Public toilets of course clog all the time because people use too much paper and/or don’t flush.
Is that good?
I’m a cheapskate. I’ve installed several toilets in my life. Lately I’ve used YouTube to help guide me, but I remember swapping toilets decades ago with Time-Life Home Improvements series’s bathroom book propped open on the sink.
I think the priority is producing toilets that they can sell. Most people are going to scrub out the bowl and wipe the thing down on a fairly regular basis, so I suspect that if the cost of some super-spiffy nano-glaze added materially to the cost of a new toilet, those wouldn’t sell as well as ones that can flush turds the size of Nerf footballs. Or as I suspect, most people are buying toilets for looks, not performance, assuming some base level of performance.
Maybe for commercial use, the nano-glaze might gain some traction if it could be shown that it would reduce janitorial cost in some way.
I don’t think there’s any reason the toilet couldn’t do both, they’re not mutually exclusive. But I get your points about the relative perceived value and the marketing issues. I suspect the people scrubbing out the bowl are not the same ones choosing the toilet, and that in any case they aren’t aware of what’s available.
I think the issue is that unless the coating somehow prevents people from cleaning their toilets at the interval they already do, they’re not likely to spend more money on it. I mean, some people might be willing to spend more money to have a streak-free bowl, but I suspect most wouldn’t be willing to spend very much on it.
If one of the toilet companies could just incorporate it into their standard product without raising the cost much, then it would be a differentiating thing and a good one IMO. Basically say… Kohler would cost in the same ballpark as American Standard, but they’d have the whiz-bang coating to differentiate themselves with.
But as an optional feature? I don’t see that being a popular option; certainly not as important to most people as having a satin nickel flush handle vs. oil-rubbed bronze.
I have a low-flow toilet (dual-flush model), and I’m not wiping it down daily. And not because I’m lazy - it just doesn’t need it. Is this really common?
I’m American, and I think mine is clogging slightly less. Occasionally, the flush will fail, and if I just leave things for 30-60 minutes, the next flush will be successful. I think some toilet paper just needs to sufficiently soften. I’ve only had to break out the plunger once in the five-plus years I’ve been in this house, as far as I can remember.