What's the point of these California low-flow toilets if you have to flush
them four times and use a plunger each time?
And please spare the jokes. I'm actually interested in a practical solution
to the problem. Is there a way of overcoming the state-required low-flow
mechanics, at least enough to get reasonable flow?
I spent the extra money for a pressure assist toilet. Made all the
difference in the world. It's noisier, but you get used to it quickly.
I'm in the high desert, btw. And I only flush once.
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The best solution is to get a good one. Like all products the cheap
ones just don't work as well as a good one. Note: price does not always
indicate quality. The builder specials sold with new homes are just not
made to work well.
The two most important factors that are easy to check are a fully glazed
trap (that means the pipe stuff goes out is as shinny and smooth as the part
you see, otherwise it is the consistency of very rough sand paper; very good
at stopping up things. The other is the size of that opening. Look for a
minimum of 1 3/4" two inches is better.
The cost of these two improvements is not much, but since few people
know to ask about them, they are not included on even some very expensive
(fancy looking) models. Other differences like the design of the water
passages etc. also make a difference, but are difficult to define.
Many people have been very happy with the American Standard Cadet
models. Remember that there are a number of different Cadet models, check
For real problems there are pressure flush models. They are more
expensive and often cause more noise, but they do work well.
You may want to take a look at some old Consumer Reports magazines at
your library as they have done reports on them.
As for what you have, some people have luck working with what they have.
Most will flush better if you hold down the handle as that generally
gives more water.
Cleaning the water outlets around the top of the bowl may help if they
have been clogged up.
Adjusting the float and/or shutoff valve may also help. The procedure
depends on your make and model.
Good luck and many happy flushes
I have a Sterling 1.6 GPF. I asked a plumber because we were
frustrated too, and he said this was pricier than most (maybe $130)
but he told me they work well and they do. We had a pseudo low flush,
but it was worthless. I think you would be pleased with this
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Kona Coffee & other Great Stuff
Kohler's Wellworth model has a good reputation, and the Japanese Toto's are
supposed to be excellant. Some of the eariler (and cheap current models)
were less than effective at times. A Power flush mechanism (while noisier
and having more parts) may also help. There may also be issues w/ the
venting of the horizontal runout to the vertical stack, a 3" line may do
better than a 4" line at keeping solids from settling with the reduced water
flow, but start w/ a good modern 1.6 flush unit.
My problem toilet is a Kohler. Brand new. High end. With a nice
decorative bulge on the front of the tank cover that prevents the lid and
seat from staying in the raised position. Well, what do you want for seven
I have a Kohler Wellworth toilet and as noted through out the thread it
works just great. Just a comment--Sterling is part of Kohler--got one of
their Neo-angle showers and couldn't be more pleased.
You may be trying to solve the wrong problem.
Your dilemma is a prime example of government agencies working at
The people in the health-end of the government tell us to eat more fruits
and vegetables; the EPA types tell us to conserve water by using low-flow
But fruits and vegetables result in a high percentage of "floaters." The
"floaters" take several flushes to empty the bowl but the "sinkers" go away
on the first flush.
Eat meat. Eat a lot of meat.
Partially. Floaters tend to be from high fat content, such as quick passage
due to high fiber. So the best way to keep from breaking down all the fat
from French Fries is to have high fiber at the same time.
from a high-fat diet and "Sinkers" were
I have had a Kohler Wellworth for almost three years now and it works
far better than any toilet I have used in the past as long as you
realize that for a full flush, you need to hold the handle down. If
you do, it never requires a second flush or a plunger. Flipping the
handle when only a light flush is needed works well too and hardly
uses any water.
I have 2 Kohler Wellworth Lite toilets that we installed 6 or 7 years
ago when we remodelled the bathrooms. They are crappier than what goes
in them. Even after I "adjusted" them to about 2+ gal./flush (which
helped) they still require plunging regularily. All the praises of the
Kohlers in this newsgroup makes me wonder how many models of the
Wellworth Lite Kohler has made. Based on my experience alone I'd never
buy anything with the Kohler label again.
Roger Grady email@example.com
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I bought two Toto models (Toto Drake and Toto UltraMax) after
I've never had to use a plunger on these (over three years now.)
Toto doesn't have the best customer service, to be sure, but I've hed
only minor trouble so far (like the fancy $50 seat which comes with
If you get the Drake, look for the ADA height - they say it flushes a
bit better, since the tank is a bit higher. Of course, I wouldn't know
the difference - since I only bought the ADA height model.
Get one with a Sloan pressure flush valve. Kohler and Gerber both carry
models with it. Not only does it flush well but it cannot overflow because
it stops flushing if it feels backpressure that it cannot handle.
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