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TODAY'S PAPER

New toilets offer more style, more options

If you've been unhappy with your old commode, it might be worth replacing. / Dreamstime

It makes life more comfortable and is one of the wonders of the modern era: the toilet. While it may not be glamorous, it is an essential part of living. If you've been unhappy with your old commode, it might be worth replacing. New toilets offer more style and more options for homeowners. It's a brave new world in commodes, and there are some wonderful updates that may have you giving a parting...

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It makes life more comfortable and is one of the wonders of the modern era: the toilet. While it may not be glamorous, it is an essential part of living. If you've been unhappy with your old commode, it might be worth replacing. New toilets offer more style and more options for homeowners. It's a brave new world in commodes, and there are some wonderful updates that may have you giving a parting glance to your old-style toilet.

Plumbing innovations

Of course, one of the most important innovations in toilets is the water-savings ability they have over older toilets. But there's a lot more to today's commodes. Ask anyone who's ever traveled to Japan and stayed in a hotel, and one of the first things they'll say is how amazing the toilets are. Japanese toilets combine the basic functions of both the toilet and the European-style bidet but all in a single unit. Plus, it's easy to fall in love with them and all the options they offer, such as seat warming, various styles of posterior and feminine washing, warm water and warm air drying. Some even offer music for your bathroom interlude.

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Toilet technology

For a cleaner go, nonelectric bidets are available and can make a single toilet-bidet unit out of your commode. There are single attachments that fit onto your toilet seat, or you can replace the toilet seat altogether. Bear in mind that these simpler attachments can help you wash, but they won't offer warm water and will rely on toilet paper drying.

If you're ready for a complete Japanese-style toilet experience, then a combination toilet-bidet that offers seat and water warming, a dryer and various types of washing turns a basic bodily function into a full-on bathroom experience. Some systems offer a multitude of options, personalized functions and even a bowl night light.

Considerations

If you're considering replacing your old toilet or simply converting your toilet to a toilet-bidet, be sure to check the size and shape of your toilet so that you get the correct seat size. If you're installing a toilet-bidet combination, you'll need to ensure your bathroom area will accommodate the addition, and you may also need a ground fault plug installed to connect the toilet if it has seat warming, water warming or other electronic features.

Whether you go for a simple go-and-wash toilet seat or an electronic heated, washing and drying toilet, your bathroom experience will be more hygienic and your toilet might just be the best seat in the house.