Although there are a large number of toilet designs on the market these days there are only four basic types of toilet to chose from:
Close Coupled Toilets
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Close coupled toilets are the most popular style of toilet sold in the UK.
They hide more pipework than low or high level toilets but are not as neat as back-to-wall toilets. The cistern is bolted directly onto the pan to form a single unit, which can have disadvantages if the soil pipe is positioned in the floor - see our bathroom design section for more details.
Because regulations have been introduced to make new toilets flush with less water, cisterns can now be made much narrower than previously, which has lead to some very compact designs being made available. These regulation changes also allow the use of new flushing mechanisms which are generally quieter in operation than the old syphons and work at the push of a button.
The downside of bathroom toilets with smaller cistern sizes is that flushing performance can be inferior to older larger cisterns.
Low and High Level Toilet Cisterns
Low level and high level toilets are now less common, and are usually only used when trying to re-create a Victorian style bathroom.
Back to Wall Pans
Back to wall pans are used in conjunction with built in vanity furniture. The WC unit contains a concealed cistern and all the pipework. Access to the cistern must be maintained, so most concealed WC units have a removable front panel and an access hatch in the countertop above the concealed cistern. Back to wall toilets are very neat as there is no pipework visible.
Wall hung, back to wall toilets are available from some manufacturers. These require special bracing frames to be used in conjunction with the WC unit. Wall hung toilets were initially designed for commercial applications but when used in a domestic situation they have the advantage of making the bathroom feel more "open" especially if the bathroom is small as they make the floor space seem larger.
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