Types of toilet and buying tips

A toilet is a toilet, right? Wrong! If you actually think about it there’s so many different types and colours you can include within your bathroom scheme. From the traditional to the contemporary, to a close-coupled WC, back to wall or wall hung solution.

So if you’re looking for a new loo, there’s a couple things to think about.

First, decide on the design and type of toilet, as this will affect how it is fitted within the room and the space it takes up.

Types of toilet

The Sensia Arena shower toilet from Grohe, £3370 excluding the frame, combines a WC and bidet.

Types of toilet

So what’s what? A close-coupled WC has the cistern attached to the pan, complete with a flush button or lever – these are usually the easiest to install, especially if you’re replacing an old one.

A back-to-wall or wall-hung solution has a simpler style, as the cistern is not fixed to the bowl so can be concealed behind a wall – ideal for a more streamlined feel.

A high level toilet has a much more traditional look, great for Victorian renovations, as its wall-connected cistern is is attached to the pan via an exposed flush pipe.

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Shower toilets are becoming increasingly popular, and have many different cleaning functions and other clever features, such as heated seats and odour extraction.

Types of toilet

The Modo close-coupled back-to-wall WC with soft-close hinges and a 3/6 litre dual flush, from Frontline, is priced £485.

Buying tips

By all means, do your research online, but be sure to visit showrooms to see your choices in person – and don’t be shy to have a little sit down and try out the comfort levels (you wouldn’t buy a bed without lying on it first, right?) Too high or too low may not be practical for you.

It’s also important you decide on the right pan shape as well as the style of rim and lid to suit your décor.

Most of the latest designs use dual-flush technology, so have a big and a small button which trigger different flow strengths – 2.4 or 4 litres, for example – depending on how much you need.

This can help you save water, too – great for those who are wanting to do that extra bit for the environment.

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Brands now also offer different colours and finishes for the pan and lid, as well as flush plates in shades to match your scheme.

types of toilet

Burlington‘s jet standard high level WC with single flush ceramic cistern £1317.

Design decisions

Let’s get technical – the WC’s position will affect the entire layout, so take accurate dimensions and check with a plumber where the soil pipe lies.

In older homes you’ll often need to install it on an outside wall – but in newer properties, it can usually be boxed inside, so you can find the best position for your scheme.

Be aware: relocating the soil pipe can significantly add to the cost of installation, so consider whether you can retain the existing layout for the WC.

Chrome toilet

Crosswater’s Svelte Platinum wall-hung WC, £1195, with soft-close seat, £164.


Hi-tech WCs with Wifi functionality, smart home capabilities, or remote controls are priced up to £5000 – but you can easily find a good quality, stylish one for around £400.

The lid and seat might not be included, so can add extra, plus modern flush plates come in at around £200.

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Featured image: Crosswater’s pier wall hung toilet, £460.

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1 Comment

  • Reply
    Vivian Black
    30th March 2020 at 11:20 pm

    You made a great point about the high-level toilet and how it is great for victorian renovations with its cistern and an exposed flush pipe. My husband and I are looking for a toilet service that can help us with our bathroom remodeling. We will keep these tips in mind as we search for a professional that can help us best.

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