AYP: Ask Your Plumber
1.6 or 1.28?
This is a question most people don’t even know to ask when choosing a new toilet. But it can be the difference of potentially hundreds, and sometimes thousands of dollars down the road. Since it is such an important decision, let’s dive into what it is and what it means to you.
The numbers 1.6gpf or 1.28gpf stand for the gallon per flush in a toilet. Toilets are designed to flush a very specific amount of water every time they are flushed. They are engineered to hold a certain amount of water in the bowl, and that coupled with the amount of water that the toilet tank flushes equals the amount of water the toilet uses each flush, or GPF (gallons per flush).
Now that we know what those numbers mean, let’s look at why they are important for you to consider when choosing a new toilet.
At Next Level Plumbing, we are all for saving water, it is a precious commodity and we don’t want to waste the good clean water, or tax the sewage treatment plants any more than we need to. But sometimes, in the effort to save as much water as we can, we run into side effects.
The biggest side effect we run into with how much water toilets use is how the drains under the floor perform when less water is used. Often the toilets being replaced use up to 3 or even 5 gallons each and every flush! That is a lot of water, but it is also what the house was designed to use and changing that can create stoppages.
So how can you tell if you will have a problem with your new low-flow water-saving toilet? Unfortunately, there isn’t a sure way to know upfront. However, we can make certain assumptions based on the house.
How old is your house?
In the mid-1980s the Sarasota and Bradenton areas switched from Cast Iron drain pipes to PVC drain pipes. The new toilets work better in most cases with the PVC drains under the floor. A good rule of thumb is to make sure to get the 1.6gpf toilet if you have older drain pipes under the house.
Another big consideration is how far the drain exits the house from the toilet in question.
Is it 5-10′? Or like in many Florida homes is it 60-80′? Even with new PVC piping, we see problems with a 1.28gpf toilet installed where each flush is required to carry the solids such distances. It is much better to go with the 1.6 GPF toilet in this case as well.
As a general rule of thumb it is safest to go with the 1.6gpf toilet if you aren’t sure as usually, those perform better. The instance where you can get by with a 1.28gpf toilet is in townhouses or condos or where the toilet is very close to where the main drain line exits the house.
Hopefully, this is helpful, and as always, if you have questions about what toilet to choose for your house, give us a call or text us and we would be happy to come out and discuss the right solution to fit your needs.
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