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How does a dual flush toilet work?

What is a dual flush toilet?

While a dual flush toilet may look like a regular John, there are several key factors that set the two worlds apart. For starters, when you flush a dual flush toilet, there isn’t siphoning, which is due to the fact that the bottom of the dual flush toilet has a larger exit hole, which also helps to reduce clogging. A dual flush toilet also has two options for flushing. Depending on whether the user is flushing liquids or solids, a dual flush toilet has separate buttons for the user to choose from.

Dual Flush toilets typically have a lifespan of 10-15 years and have been gaining popularity over the years. According to Duravit, more than 80% of toilets sold in the United States are dual flush toilets. The reason for this upswing in purchases may be the result of several factors, likely focusing on water consumption. Here’s how a dual flush toilet works and some reasons why you may want a dual flush toilet installed in your home.

How does it Work? 

Dual flush toilets were created by an Australian company called Caroma in 1980 as a water saving measure. Their efforts were a success; on average, dual flush toilets use 67% of the water a regular toilet would. 

A dual flush toilet functions through the two buttons on the top of the toilet. For liquids, the toilet uses a half-flush, while a full flush is used for solid waste. There are multiple kinds of dual flush toilets, some with buttons and others which are controlled by using a toilet handle (these are called toilet syphons). Because the dual flush toilet has a larger trapway, dual flush toilets utilize less water than a regular toilet. 

Pros and Cons of a Dual Flush Toilet

Dual flush toilets come with their pros and cons in comparison to a single flush toilet. Depending on whether you value upfront cost over long-term cost, or whether environmental impact has significant sway on your decisions, various factors will help you to decide whether a dual flush toilet is right for you, which we here at NexLvl Services have listed below.



Dual flush toilets are more costly upfront than regular toilets, and maintenance costs are higher as well. On average, a regular toilet costs a couple of hundred dollars, whereas a dual flush toilet can cost anywhere from several hundred to a few thousand dollars. As such, the price disparity between the two leaves some people shocked. Moreover, if your toilet starts to have issues, modern technology costs more to repair. On occasion, some of the parts are difficult to find as well, and as such may leave a dent in your wallet on occasion, whereas traditional flush toilets are much easier to repair.

User Friendliness

As mentioned before, dual flush toilets typically have two buttons at the top of it. While this may not pose a problem for some people, others have complained that the buttons are difficult to push at times, which may be inconvenient for those who are elderly or who have disabilities. If you’re personally concerned, it may be best to check out a dual flush toilet in person and see if it’s convenient for you. 


Water Bill

While a dual flush toilet may cost you more upfront, dual flush toilets save a lot of money from your overall monthly budget. Around 30% of your water consumption in the home is simply from flushing the toilet. Because a dual flush toilet utilizes much less water than a traditional flush, your monthly water / utility bill will also reflect that. According to Princeton Student Climate Initiative, dual-flush toilets save around 67% of water used compared to regular toilets. On average, traditional flush toilets use between four to even seven gallons per flush. The Environmental protection Agency estimates that the savings that result from less water being utilized can save you around $140 a year. Perhaps even more so in Arizona, as Phoenix has been consecutively increasing the water bill rate — as of 2021, there has been a proposed rate increase of 6.5% for the next two years. With water utility bills increasing, finding ways to cut back on monthly costs may be an ideal route to review.

Easy General Maintenance

As mentioned before, dual flush toilets have a larger exit hole for waste. This in turn makes it easier to flush without having to worry about clogging and dealing with the aftermess of a clogged toilet and plunging process. While this may not be a large issue for some people, YouGov reports that cleaning a bathroom is the most hated chore in America. As such, if you hate constantly unclogging your toilet, maybe consider getting a dual flush to relieve yourself from that hassle.

Environmental Impact

A dual flush toilet drives lower water usage in your home, thereby saving money on your monthly water bill. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that 4,000 gallons of water can be saved annually in a residential household that employs dual flush toilets. They continue, “Over the course of your lifetime, you will likely flush the toilet nearly 140,000 times. If you replace older, existing toilets with WaterSense labeled models, you can save nearly 13,000 gallons per year with this simpler, greener choice.” With water 

There are a number of differences between a traditional flush toilet and a dual flush toilet. Dual flush toilets are not only a money saver for you in the long run, but they also are a major contributor in aiding the environment. As you look to modernize your home, dual flush toilets can help to get you one step closer to a more energy-efficient and cost-friendly home. If you’re interested in getting a dual flush toilet installed in your home, or if you have any concerns regarding whether a dual flush toilet is right for you, call NexLvl Services and we’ll help you find a dual flush toilet to your liking and answer any questions along the way.

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