Need help with toilet selection

Discussion in 'Toilet Forum discussions' started by helaurin, Jun 11, 2016.

  1. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2016
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Doing a full gut/rebuild on two bathrooms. Contractor's chosen plumbing supply house is recommending two Kohler Cimmaron toilets.

    In one bathroom, we will have a Kohler Memoirs tub. The selection for toilet and sinks is being driven by this; the plumbing supply house says that if we choose any other manufacturer for the toilets and sinks, the finish will be different (different shades of white) and it will look bad. So, to match the Kohler Memoirs tub, they are recommending the Kohler Caxton (2209) sinks, and the Kohler Cimmaron toilets.

    Are the Cimmaron toilets good toilets? In terms of bowl-cleaning flush power? Reliable in terms of NOT leaking? Quiet when flushing? (I know that might strange, but I recently adopted a child who is struggling with fears of noise from flushing the toilet, especially at night. Apparently, one of her parents would beat her if she flushed at night and woke that parent up, and the other parent used to force her to urinate in a kitchen sink, even at other people's homes). So this isn't just a little preference for a quiet toilet; we really want to ensure that the future toilet isn't very loud and I don't know how to find out how loud any particular toilet is when flushing. As a result... she has a hard time flushing in a home environment, and especially at night. I don't want an automatically flushing toilet, because I'd be concerned she might regress in her sanitary habits.

    If there's other toilets I should consider instead, please let me know.
     
  2. jadnashua

    jadnashua Retired Defense Industry Engineer xxx

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    White can look different even if it is from the same manufacturer depending on what surrounds it and the ambient lighting! There are others that make a white that is so close to Kohlers, that unless they are sitting right next to each other in exactly the same lighting, nobody would notice. Kohler makes great CI tubs and sinks...not too impressed over some of their other stuff. You need to know which white the Kohler stuff is, as there is more than one to get a proper match with another company's products.
     
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  4. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Apr 27, 2012
    Location:
    New York, NY
    We were sold the same bill of goods about our Kohler sink. That' why I suffered for years with a horrible, awful, disgracefully-poor-flushing Kohler toilet.

    When I ripped it out and replaced it with a Toto Drake, I felt like a complete idiot for not having done it sooner, and for letting some person's impression of appearance make me put in a bad-performing toilet.

    There's a Toto white that is close enough to Kohler white. And nobody notices anyway. How long would a guest spend comparing your toilet to your sink for finish color. It's just stupid.

    Get something that works, like ANY Toto. And do research online at Terry's sales site and supply and some other web sites to see what a range of STREET prices is. Toto's LIST prices are insane -- so that decorator can charge list and make a great profit -- but the STREET prices are very affordable. Call around to a few plumbing supply places with the exact model and color you want, and you will get some very good quotes (and some terrible ones, of course).

    The entry-level Toto Entrada is a best buy. Great flusher, great quality porcelain, and a very good price.

    The Toto Original Drake (CST744E) is excellent, as is the Drake II, which is a different style. Both flush amazingly-well.

    Fancier appearance, one-piece, etc., like the Ultramax II or the Soiree cost a little more, but are high on style and performance.
     
  5. SteveW

    SteveW DIY Senior Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Location:
    Omaha, NE
    I completely agree with my esteemed colleague (whom I've never met but agree with virtually everything of his I've read), wjcandee, above.

    When you poke around this site it sometimes seems like a commercial for Toto toilets, but that's only because those of us who have replaced underperforming toilets from other manufacturers with Totos are surprisingly enthusiastic about our toilets!

    When you read about how Totos are made, the "little things" like the fact that the company uses "low slump" clay, and doesn't glaze its trapways , show how well engineered they really are.

    Then you read the testimonials that many of us have written about how we can virtually throw the plunger away after putting in Totos and you end up giving the brand a try.

    Then you watch how effortlessly the darn thing just swallows up whatever you throw at it. Kind of amazing to watch them in action.

    I personally like Toto one-piece toilets that have the "cyclone wash" bowl wash system.
     
  6. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

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    Jun 11, 2016
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Great feedback. For those with the lower-priced Totos (Entrada, Drake, Drake II), how loud or quiet are they when the flush? That's a big consideration for this child.
     
  7. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Apr 27, 2012
    Location:
    New York, NY
    They are all pretty quiet, to my ear. There's no big whoosh or anything because they are not pressure assisted. There is a sound of Rushing Water, but that's it. We have both kinds. It's possible that the II version is a little quieter, because the water circulates around the outside of the bowl rather than going straight down, but I think the difference is de minimis. Generally, the acoustics of the spot in which the toilet is placed are going to be more important to perceived noise than anything else. For example, one of our two identical Drakes is in a little alcove with an acoustically live wall that protrudes forward over the tank about 3 feet above it. That radiates noise forward, so that one seems a smidge louder, mostly the noise of dripping water on refill, than the other one, which is in an open area. Most people wouldn't notice the difference at all, but I do.
     
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  8. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

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    Jun 11, 2016
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Thanks. I'm trying to get information from the plumbing supply place that my contractor uses; they said so far that Toto's are special order and non-returnable. With demolition of the existing bathrooms scheduled for next week, I'm trying to get a lead time commitment on the Toto's before making the switch. If they say 2 weeks, I'm probably good. If they say 3 - 6 weeks or more... not so much.

    But if they do the job, look good, reliable and are quieter than the Kohler Cimmaron's, it may be worth it for my kiddo. One toilet would be in the "master" bathroom (which is, like most, just off the master bedroom). My darling bf has a habit of needing to go a couple times a night, and almost never bothers shutting the door. The toilet is just past the door into the room, so I tend to wake up when he uses the facilities.

    For the toilet that my kiddo would be using, we're actually designing it so that the toilet will essentially be in a three-side alcove. The alcove opening is at a 90 degree right angle from the bathroom door opening, and about 5 feet in, so hopefully that will be fairly quiet.
     
  9. Terry

    Terry Administrator Staff Member

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    Aug 17, 2004
    Occupation:
    Plumber
    Location:
    Bothell, Washington
    Many Kohler showrooms are just that. I'm thinking you are close to a major population center. If it is anything like Seattle, there are going to be many plumbing supply places of distribution there. You have plenty of options.

    The Kohler white is slightly more gray than a TOTO Cotton White. It's very close though.
    The Kohler Cimmaron toilets over the last few years have improved. Much improved over the 90's stuff.

    [​IMG]

    Kohler Cimmaron
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2018
  10. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

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    Jun 11, 2016
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Thanks for your help. I've instructed the plumbing supply store that my contractor requires purchases to be made through to order the Toto toilets. I wish he used more than one location of this chain for orders, as there's another location in the chain about 30 minutes in the other direction and just over the border in a tax-free state. However, we have to use the location he has a relationship with, so sales tax on the $11,000+ order will be almost $700. The service though has been good at the local store so far, so that might be part of it.
     
  11. wjcandee

    wjcandee Wise One

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    Apr 27, 2012
    Location:
    New York, NY
    The $11K is for a bunch of fixtures besides toilets, right? Wow.

    And of course good for you for taking on the responsibility of an emotionally-injured child.

    One belated thought: Toto's "Power Gravity" flushing system is quiet and drama-free, with much less rushing water than the later designs. It is very effective in removing waste from the bowl, though. Kind of slurp, gurgle, done. They only still sell one toilet with it, the Ultimate (as opposed to the Ultramax). MS854114 (with no letters after the number, like SG, CEFG, etc.; those are Ultramax's. Very confusing.) The Ultimate is a Power Gravity toilet and will have the quietest flush. However, the running water for refill will be the same as any other Toto toilet, and that's the thing that would have woken the abusive parent, I suspect. Toto uses a quiet fill valve, but they use a few different kinds. The quietest is going to be the one made by Korky. It is an easy DIY job to change the fill valve to that one, which can be purchased at any hardware store, practically, for about $11. Korky model 528MP.

    Good luck and come back with any more questions, and let us know how it goes whenever it's done.

    Again, you're a fine person for taking on the responsibility that you have.
     
  12. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2016
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Thanks for the info!

    Yes, the 11K is for a bunch of stuff for two full bathrooms - Moen faucets, standard-style shower heads, handheld-bar showers, diverters, shower curtain rod, towel rings, towel bar, toilet paper holders, lighting fixtures, Kohler Verdera medicine cabinets, a Kohler cast-iron whirlpool tub (standard 5 footer size, but, hopefully a vast improvement for my old bones), all the plumbing stuff we could reasonably assume we'd need, right down to the wax rings and angle supply pieces.

    I think a lot of children, whether we like it or not, are emotionally-injured in some way, to some degree... whether it's just being sensitive to name-calling by peers, or whatever. It's sometimes less obvious, sometimes more obvious. But she's a great kid, and just gets the importance of so many things more than many of her classmates. She might grumble once in a while about having to get up for school if she's tired, but she puts a lot of effort into doing the best she can there and helping out other kids when they are stuck. She knows that nothing in life is truly free, and if she wants to someday enjoy a nice lifestyle, home, etc., she needs to get an education, skills, a career path and apply herself. But she's not driven just for financial reward either; she's only 10, and she's already volunteered over 100 hours in the past year at a local animal shelter, because she chooses to invest her time that way. She keeps me young.... I never had the experience of a water balloon fight until now, for example.

    It's actually not the refilling sound that gets her, it's the actual flush as the water drops from the tank to the bowl to push everything on down to the sewer. Apparently, a lot of times the water in the tank was brought in by bucket after borrowing or buying a bucket of water from a neighbor, because the water company turned off the water in her parent's house.. quite often. So once someone flushed, there wasn't always water coming in from a refill valve.

    Anyhow... thanks for all the great info!
     
  13. Reg Williams

    Reg Williams New Member

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    Jun 15, 2016
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    Plumber
    Location:
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    I have no feedback on the toilet selection however... the reasons why you need a quiet toilet truly disturbed me. What is wrong with people? Good for you for trying to give that child a decent home. Good luck with finding matching whites for your bathroom tub, sink and toilet.
     
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  14. Dana

    Dana In the trades

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    In some high density apartment/condo housing in Switzerland it's actually illegal to flush a toilet after 9PM, enforced by city ordinances, according to friends of mine who were astonished to get a late night visit from a constable knocking on their door after having committed the offense, and were issued a citation with an associated fine. That's not an excuse for child abuse in the US, but there are sometimes cultural roots to quirks like that, even when there is a mental health issue aggravating it.
     
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  15. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

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    Jun 11, 2016
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    Pennsylvania
    I'm sorry that the reason why we need a quiet toilet disturbed you - but the fact that it did, shows you have empathy. I know when I tried to find out which toilets tend to be quietest with the local supply house, the staff looked at me like I was just being beyond silly in pickiness. While it shouldn't really matter why flushing noise volume is an issue for us, it seemed they just didn't get it and weren't willing to help find out which are quiet.

    As far as what is wrong with people... I don't know. Truly, from what I've seen, in some cases it's culture or what they themselves have experienced, but more often, it's often mental health and addiction issues (frequently combined).
     
  16. flapper

    flapper Member

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    May 19, 2016
    Location:
    California
    It disturbed me too... especially the pee in the sink part... but I didn't want to bring it up :confused:
     
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  17. helaurin

    helaurin New Member

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    Jun 11, 2016
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    Pennsylvania
    Yeah, a lot of what this child went through would... confuse... most normal people who knew what went on. It's sad she went through that, but she's doing really well with almost everything... except the sound of toilets and the occasional nightmare.
     
  18. flapper

    flapper Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2016
    Location:
    California
    The typical noise from a toilet is from the fill valve; fill valves are noisier with higher water pressures, but with low pressures they are nearly silent.

    So if you turn down the pressure at your PRV to something like 30, then you'll have a silent filling toilet (though slow). You'd also have silent faucets and stuff but also, low flow. You can try it out to see how it is. If you can live with it, then that is great, because you save water and have silent (or quiet) fixtures.
     
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