Contemporary and Traditional Bathroom Toilets

Bathroom toilets can be designed with a contemporary feel or with a more traditional look in mind.  The angular lines of an Edwardian style bathroom suite can be echoed in a freestanding toilet.  A wall hung or back to wall toilet will probably have a more contemporary feel.  Close-coupled toilets have the cistern positioned close to the toilet bowl, though cisterns can also be low level, medium level or high level, typically with a chain attached.

A Burlington traditional toilet will probably benefit from a wooden seat and cover, though seats can be extremely up-to-date, made from tough moulded plastic or wood.  Some covers are modelled from transparent Perspex, and can be decorated with colourful designs, containing eye-catching fish or shells for example.  Contemporary toilet covers can even be fashioned to close automatically after use.  They are a perfect remedy for that age-old gender divide.  After all, will men ever learn to close the toilet lid?

Hygiene can also be employed in the design of your toilet, as some toilets come complete with an anti-bacterial toilet seat.


How to Unblock a Toilet

Partial Blockage

A partial blockage means that the toilet is not completely blocked and it is still draining, only very slowly.  In order to unblock a partial blockage you will need to let the toilet drain completely.  Fill 50 – 75% of a bucket with tap water and hold this high above the water.  Next, pour the water directly into the bottom of the bowl.  The pressure should clear out the blockage.  Do not use this method if your toilet is completely blocked.

Complete Blockage

A complete blockage means the toilet isn’t draining at all.  Before using any of the methods below, remove most of the water by scooping it out with a bucket or a bowl.  You can dispose of this water in your garden or elsewhere.

Using Your Hands

Make sure that you are wearing gloves before sticking your hand down the u-bend of the toilet in order to feel the blockage.  If you can feel a solid mass in the u-bend, simply pull it out straight away.

If not, you will need to use one of the following methods.

Using a WC Plunger

Push the plunger down the bottom bowl of the toilet and start pumping the handle.  The sucking, plunging action will, hopefully, clear the blockage.

Using a Drain Auger

Feed the drain auger down the u-bend until you can feel it hit the blockage.  Turn the drain auger a couple of times in order to dislodge and break the blockage.

Finally, disinfect the toilet immediately and dispose of the used gloves.


Clearing A Blocked Toilet

Most blocked toilets are caused by too much toilet paper, or by foreign objects that should never be flushed down a toilet in the first place.  It sounds like a domestic disaster, but a blocked toilet might not be as serious as you think.  Before sending out for expensive plumbers or drain engineers, you might want to see if you can clear the blockage yourself.

To begin, you need to identify the location of the blockage.  If you can, lift the outdoor drain inspection cover nearest your toilet’s waste evacuation pipe.  If you find that the chamber is full, you will need to clear the blocked area around the drain and pipes using a specialist drain rod.  If the chamber is empty and the drain is clear, it means the blockage is further up, somewhere between the inspection chamber and the toilet.

Insert a drain clearing wire into the toilet bowl and push as far as you can. Get someone to keep watch over the inspection chamber outside, in case the material causing the blockage becomes loose.  Any blocking material that becomes free should be removed at the inspection chamber, otherwise it may continue along the drain and cause more problems further on where it will be more difficult to deal with.

Plungers are the obvious choice for clearing blocked toilets.  Another effective tool is a toilet auger, a specialist tool sold in DIY retailers that has a long flexible reach and a cork-screwing action that clears blockages.  Some solutions are less sophisticated but equally successful.  For example, many people report great success with an improvised technique that includes a housemop covered with a plastic bag utilised as a giant plunger.


Need A New Toilet Seat? Why Not Go For Something Special This Time…

I don’t know about you, but I have a thing about toilet seats.  First of all I hate the stupid flimsy ones that break, it does my head in.  Second, the toilet seats that just won’t stay up – absolute nightmare! How can you go “number one” as a man whilst trying to hold your toilet seat up with one hand – quite frankly it is a recipe for disaster.

So if you need a new toilet seat then why not consider some of the following types of toilet seats (I found them all on UK Bathrooms).

Ok so first up, why not get a good old sturdy wooden toilet seat?  There are some great ones out there, they break less.  The only downside is they are more likely to fall down as they are heavier and thicker – but install it correctly and that shouldn’t be a problem 🙂

Second, why not try one those cool auto closing toilet seats, so basically you just go to close it and it slowly closes, preventing the toilet seat slamming down and breaking (saving you the cost of another toilet seat).

Finally, why not get something colourful! UKB seem to have some Bora Bora toilet seats, they look great, and will certainly be popular with the kids!


Going Green – renovating your bathroom

Climate change is the single most discussed topic in political and environmental circles at the moment. From cars to computers, aeroplanes to aerosols, it seems that virtually every product we use is having a harmful impact on the planet.

Renovating your bathroom in as eco-friendly way as possible is a good way to help do your bit to prolong the life of the planet.

Of course, this does not mean to say that you have to resort to boiling your bathwater over an open fire or washing your bath towels once a month. There are plenty of ways to conserve energy without a drop in living standards.

For example, consider your toilet. Chances are it will be of the traditional lever flush or chain variety. Gallons of water are wasted each day by these conventional devices. Try installing a dual flush button on your cistern. This will help reduce the amount of water you use, when flushing, by up to a third. Low flush lavatories are becoming very popular and there is no need to cut back on quality, because both systems are stylish and modern.

Another useful tip is to incorporate water savers. These can be easily fitted into your showerhead and drastically reduce the amount of water used without compromising on cleanliness or enjoyment.

Insulating your bathroom walls is another good idea that you should seriously consider.

Finally, have a look at your lighting. Most appliances now run on low energy light bulbs.

So do your wallet, as well as the planet, a favour.


Selecting the right toilet for your bathroom

It is important that you choose a toilet that is right for you. There are many styles available, and you will need to find one that fits your bathroom perfectly. A toilet with a round front may be more ideal for smaller bathrooms. There are different types of toilets that are easier to clean, such as a one-piece toilet. Choosing a toilet that is harder to clean will be more time consuming and may lead to it not being cleaned properly.

There are toilets that have been designed to fight bacteria and stop mould from spreading. These toilets are built with a special glaze to help prevent condensation. Like the one-piece toilet, this type of toilet is easier to maintain and will help you to have a cleaner bathroom.

If you do not have much space, then opting for a space saving toilet is the best idea. These types of toilets often come with matching seats and covers, which helps your bathroom to keep its theme and look neater. Plumbworld offers space saving toilets, though their selection is currently only available in white.

If a toilet has a matching seat or cover that you do not like, then you can swap them for a different style. Toilet seats are not too expensive and come in a variety of styles. Plumbworld offer a wide selection of designer toilet seats in a variety of styles, including black mosaic seats, starfish seats for an aquatic theme and even a football style seat, which is suitable for children.


Environmental issues when designing your bathroom

The bathroom may have remained relatively overlooked in considering environmental issues for some time, but those days are over and the bathroom is now subject to the same scrutiny as other rooms of the home.

In the future, all homes which are sold are likely to be affected by energy efficiency rules, which means that the house will be ‘energy rated’ as to its impact on the environment and whether or not it uses energy and possibly water efficiently.  Toilets already use less water to flush than they did thirty years ago.

However, this does not mean that your bathroom has to be transformed into some kind of sawdust toilet with a jug for bathing.  It is still possible to have luxury and save the planet.

All it takes is a little careful planning and consideration.  Can you maximise natural light coming into your bathroom?  This is great for energy efficiency and natural light really helps when applying make up! Is your hot water system controlled by a condensing boiler? Have you set a timer for water and central heating?

You can also make sure that the bathroom is double glazed, thereby cutting down on heat loss.  Or you can fit water saving devices to take water from the shower or bath and store it for use in the garden, if you want to be really water-efficient. For many people, a few basic energy saving principles are all that is necessary and still have the bathroom of your dreams!


WC Choice

The choice of a WC may seem like a straightforward one; you like the look of it and you like the price of it, what more is there to think about? Well there are some basic considerations to bear in mind when you are thinking about a new WC. Obviously the look of it and the price are two of the main considerations, but you also need to think about other things, such as the type of cistern. The cistern can be high, (which is a very old fashioned style, but if your bathroom is in a period or Victorian house, then this could be very appropriate), low-level, or close-coupled.

Today, a low-level cistern, which sits to the back and just slightly above the WC, is the most common form of toilet. A close-coupled cistern is actually joined onto the back of the toilet, making effectively a single unit. Close-coupled cisterns are usually used where space is an issue. There are also space-saving cisterns available, which can be a real plus in a very small bathroom.

You should bear in mind that the cistern can be concealed. This can look particularly effective where you have a bathroom in which the other facilities are ‘boxed in’ or hidden. If you are considering having a concealed cistern you should remember that there are sure to be times when you need gain access to it, particularly for repairs, so do not make it completely inaccessible.