Buying a self cleaning toilet is an excellent way to minimize maintenance around the bathroom. Although, there have been many rumors about whether these units actually do the job. There are many models on the market that still require you to do a bit of cleaning, which is bad-invested money. However, in this article, we will present our top picks that have been tested numerous times and that will make you forget about maintenance completely.
How do Self Cleaning Toilets Work?
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There are various mechanisms that make the them work, depending on the model. The most popular models use cartridges or tablets that reach the bowl as soon as you flush. Some units also have special sensors that measure the exact amount of cleaning solution that you need in each flush.
Usually, most units have either a continuous, deep, or quick cleaning. Some models even have UV light and electrolyzed water that kills bacteria and viruses. However, with the advanced features comes a higher price, so be ready to pay a few thousand dollars depending on the model.
Traditional vs Self Cleaning Toilets
When you compare the upsides and downsides of both types of toilets, you notice that there is no “winner.” For example, a traditional toilet might not be able to rinse the bowl perfectly, but it has fewer mechanical issues down the road compared to a self cleaning toilet. When it comes to design and water efficiency, there is no big difference between traditional and these units.
Our Comparison Table
7 Best Self Cleaning Toilets – Expert Reviewed
1. Toto G400
Among all the units that we tested, Toto G400 is definitely one of our top choices. Although it’s a bit costly, the price is justified with all the handy features this unit has. First off, it has a very powerful, 3D Tornado flush system. It leaves no waste behind, and you won’t need to worry about hygiene and skid marks. The unit also comes with a beautiful Cefiontect glaze which prevents bacteria and viruses from sticking.
The toilet also features a remotely-operated temperature and pressure control, which can come in very handy in many situations. Note: what does pressure control do? The seat itself is heated, making it perfect for cold winter days. Under the seat, there is an automatic air deodorizer, as well as an illuminated touchpad. The toilet can also “remember” two different profiles, so you won’t have to adjust the temperature and pressure every time you use it.
2. American Standard 714AA154
This unit has all the similar features as the Toto G400 but is not as expensive. It’s a fantastic choice if you want a quality toilet without paying too much. The toilet features a one-minute cycle that perfectly cleans small marks and removes odors. Additionally, there is a ten-minute Deep Clean Cycle that cleans the inside of the bowl completely. The cleaning system is battery-operated and works on 4AA batteries which are already included in the package.
Like most units in this price range, this model has a beautiful EverClean finish. It prevents microorganisms from sticking, leaving the toilet surface completely clean and safe. Also, the company offers some pretty nice warranties, including a 10-year warranty on chinaware and a single-year warranty on the seat and electronics.
3. Kohler K-4026
With its tankless design, K-4026 is a fantastic choice for any modern bathroom. It’s compact and streamlined, and with its LED nightlight, K-4026 makes using the toilet a completely different experience. It also has an intuitive touchscreen remote which you can easily mount on the wall, in case you worry about losing it somewhere around the house.
Like G400, this model also allows you to save up to two profiles so that you can always have the pre-set seat and water temperature, as well as water pressure. Another nice thing is that the toilet performs the rinse cycle automatically after each use, leading to a completely touch-free experience. On top of that, the toilet has a carbon filter that reduces odors and lasts up to a year.
4. Ove Decors 735H
Ove Decors 735H is another great choice if you are looking for an affordable, yet high-quality solution. It’s amazingly effective at cleaning and provides a completely hands-free experience. Also, it looks sleek, especially at night when the LED lights come on.
The toilet is very efficient and meets WaterSense and EPA standards. With 1.6 gallon-consumption on full flush, it will save you at least 20% of the money each year compared to most other toilets. Plus, it comes with a heated seat that features SoftClose technology to prevent unintentional slamming. However, we noticed that some people reported defective parts right out of the package, which is definitely a downside.
5. Kohler 3814
As soon as we installed this toilet, we had to test its famous 360-degree flushing technology. Obviously, we were overly satisfied! The toilet perfectly removes any type of waste and keeps the bowl clean for much longer than standard toilets. On top of that, it consumes only 1.28 gallons of water and meets WaterSense regulations.
The toilet also features a compact-height seat, which is ideal for most adults and even younger children. On the left side, there is a chrome trip lever, which is small, short, and easy to use. Still, it would be nice to be able to install the lever manually on any side.
Also, we noticed that the unit is a bit challenging to install, so if you are not a DIY professional, you might need to call a plumber.
6. Toto Carlyle II Washlet+ C200
Being “Washlet+”, this model comes with additional features compared to traditional Washlets. This unit includes both the toilet and the bidet seat that perfectly fit together, but still, you can buy a different bidet seat if you prefer. You only need to buy one with the “Washlet+” sign. Also, the toilet has an extremely powerful Tornado Flushing System that uses 1.28 gallons and meets EPA and WaterSense standards.
The bowl is elongated, with a universal height, but it might be a bit uncomfortable for young children. When it comes to design, it’s obvious that C200 perfectly fits any modern bathroom. There is also a minimalistic, almost unnoticeable chrome trip lever on the right side, which adds a specific note to the style overall. However, you should be careful with the lever, since some people reported that it might be fragile.
7. Kohler K-5401
Although expensive, K-5401 is a beautiful model with flawlessly balanced curves, ergonomic one-piece design, and immersive performance. It’s made from durable vitreous china, which is also covered by a 1-year warranty. The bowl is elongated, making this unit very comfortable and modern.
Obviously, with the high price also come some great features. The toilet has a warm-air dryer and uses UV light and electrolyzed water for self cleaning. You can use it completely hands-free since it’s activated by motion sensors, leading to a perfectly clean experience.
Also, the seat is heated and features QuietClose technology to prevent unintentional slamming and damage to the unit.
The Buyer’s Guide Review
Advantages of Self Cleaning Units
Obviously, the main advantage of these units is that you won’t have to pull on those rubber gloves and clean as frequently since the toilet rinses itself completely. Also, these units are able to trap odors for longer, compared to traditional models. After you install the unit, which might be complicated in some cases, it will be extremely simple to use.
Disadvantages of Self Cleaning Units
Unfortunately, even though the unit is self cleaning, you will still need to clean the exterior from time to time. Additionally, you may need to buy batteries and cleaning tablets from time to time. They are not expensive, but still, they add an extra cost. Also, these units have many more parts than traditional toilets, which increases the chance of possible issues.
Other Things That You Should Consider
Some highly-intelligent toilets might require access to an electrical outlet. Be sure to check if you have an outlet in your bathroom, and whether you need it for other stuff or not. Also, you should consider if the outlet is on the floor or on the rear side. Most plumbing systems have floor outlets, but some systems have outlets on the rear. Floor outlets usually work by using gravity, while rear outlets use compressed air.
Finally, the essential thing that you should consider is MaP performance. Basically, it means how much waste a toilet can handle per flush. Most high-quality units will have a rating of 1000, while some can go down to 300-400.
Although these units were very expensive in the past, they are becoming more and more affordable to broad masses. However, it doesn’t mean that these units are better than traditional toilets – they simply have an extra feature. If you are ready to invest a bit more in order to reduce the amount of time you spend maintaining, buying a self cleaning toilet is your best choice.