Toilets are one of the most interesting human inventions that have enabled us to live comfortably in cities. The most revolutionary feature of the modern toilet is its waste disposal system or the flushing system. For a long time, that system included a tank and a bowl. The tank provided the water to move the waste out of the bowl through a siphon system and into the drainage system.
How tank toilets Work
The water moved from the tank by gravity once a valve was opened when the user flushed the toilet. That layout has been used for many decades until recently. There is now a new toilet flushing system that does not incorporate a tank. The design looks sleek, and it functions just as well as the old tank system. The only difference with it is that it makes the toilet less crowded by eliminating the bowl.
How Tankless Toilets Work
The altered layout of the tankless toilet needed a different approach to making the flushing possible. It needed to make use of the water in the pipes without storing it anywhere else. The tankless toilet uses an electric pump to power the flush instead of gravity and atmospheric pressure. Others make use of the pressure of water stored in storage tank supplying water to the building. Such pumpless flushing systems require pipes that are 1″ to work properly.
The tankless toilet has a valve that allows only a predetermined amount of water into the bowl when you flush. That means that the bowl does not overflow. Once the flushing water reaches the bowl, the draining of waste will work just the same way as the traditional toilet. The basic principle of making sure that water is delivered in one burst to create a violent flow ensures that the waste moves out of the siphon system at the bottom of the bowl just like in the traditional toilets.
Piping in Tankless Toilets
There is still some discussion on how big the pipe that delivers the water into the bowl should be to make the tankless toilet work properly. Some believe that a 1/2″ pipe should work just fine while other believe that 1″ should be the ideal pipe diameter. The debate is informed by the fact the water being delivered into the bowl to move the waste through the siphon system must be of a certain volume within a specified period.
Otherwise, it will not create a big enough flow to create a sucking effect and draw the waste out into the siphon at the bottom of the bowl. Without that sucking effect, repeated flushing might be needed to clear the bowl of waste. Both sizes, however, seem to still work correctly to deliver a substantial amount of water to clear the bowl at the moment.
Advantages of Tankless Toilets
• The tankless toilets are smaller than the traditional toilets that park a sizable tank behind the toilet bowl. The tankless toilets leave some room for you to customize the toilet and still perform perfectly.
• The tankless toilets will most have the pipe supplying the water installed inside the wall or under the floor. That makes them more environment-friendly because they will not leak.
• The tankless flushing systems work faster being they take a short time to refill. That is helpful where several people are waiting to use the toilet.
• Today both the tankless and traditional toilets have the same design as traditional toilets. That is because manufacturers are now required by law to design a toilet that uses 1.6 gallons per flush. Older toilet designs however used as much as 3 and 1/2 gallons to 7 gallons to flush the toilet.
• However, unlike tanks that can leak and waste water, the tankless toilets are environment-friendly in that they do not waste water through leaks.
Disadvantages of Tankless toilets
• The fact that most tankless toilets installed at home use electricity means that when the power goes out, you will not be able to flush the toilet.
• If you need to repair the toilet, if it is a tankless toilet, you have to call a professional plumber. That is because the pipes are hidden in the walls or the floor, and the electric pump is hidden as well. The chances that your DIY skills will help you to repair your tankless toilet are minimal or none.
• Tankless toilets cost a little bit more. The added cost is used to cover the complexity of the design which requires an electric pump for tankless toilets used in homes. Most homes do not have a huge storage tank that can provide enough flushing power.
Should you buy and have the Tankless toilets installed?
• Tankless toilets need pipes that are bigger and stronger to withstand the high flushing pressure provided by the pumps. If a tank toilet is installed in an old building, it is probably for the best to use the same tank toilet.
• Replacing the tank toilet with a tankless toilet may damage the pipes which may require you to redo the plumbing again. The added coat may therefore not be worth it. Most tank toilets were also constructed in toilets that had much room to spare. Space is therefore not a limiting factor in older washrooms.
• If you are constructing a new home or the plumbing used in the current building can support a tankless toilet, and you have a reliable electric supply, you should use the tankless toilet.
• The huge cost of the tankless toilets might also put you off because their cost ranges from $1000 to $5000. The good news is that they are aesthetically pleasing and if you have a small bathroom or it’s a public bathroom, they will serve you very well.
• If you live where power outages are rare, this toilet will also serve you well. Apart from that fact that it will enable you to manage bathroom space better, it will require minimal maintenance over the years, and you will rarely experience leaks, something that is very common with tank toilets.
• If you live in a place where power outages are common, then you should avoid them entirely, unless you have a backup generator that powers the whole building. That is because anytime time there is a power outage, the toilet will stop functioning entirely. That is something that is not very pleasant, particularly for toilets that have a higher traffic.
Overall, the tankless toilets are perfect if you have a reliable supply of electricity, the home or building has pipes that can withstand high pressure and at least equal to ½” in size. Such buildings are ideal for the tankless toilet and will not give you any headaches.