Remember the great toilet paper shortage of 2020, during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic?
A bidet – a bowl or receptacle that you sit on to wash yourself after going to the bathroom – might have come in handy then.
Bidets are popular around the world. According to Bidet.org, about 60% of Japanese homes have them. In some parts of South America, they are in around 90% of homes. They are also in many European homes.
Bidets have never taken off with quite the same gusto in the United States. Still, having a bidet in your bathroom comes with a variety of benefits! As mentioned above, bidets save on toilet paper. (Americans use 36.5 billion rolls of toilet paper annually, according to one study.) They’re also a more effective way of cleaning yourself after you do your business.
If you’re not quite ready to take the leap and install a bidet in your bathroom as your next home improvement project, you might want to look into installing a bidet toilet seat instead – a cheaper and easier alternative. It attaches right to the toilet and its supply line with a T-valve, a T-shaped piece that splits the water supply to send water to the toilet tank and the bidet toilet seat. It will usually come with the kit to install the seat.
Here’s how you can easily install a bidet toilet seat in your home.
1. Use your toilet’s shutoff valve to turn off the water, then flush your toilet until it’s empty.
2. Attach the T-valve to the water supply line. You’ll need to unscrew the toilet’s supply hose from the bottom of the toilet and replace it with the T-valve.
3. Remove your existing toilet seat, and clean the rim well.
4. Slide the bidet seat onto the mounting plate.
5. Connect the bidet toilet seat to your water supply by attaching the water supply hose from the seat to the open end of the T-valve.
6. Check for leaks by turning the shutoff valve back on.
How much does a bidet toilet seat cost?
A bidet toilet seat will run you at least $200, and you could pay as much as $1,000, depending on the features it has. If you choose an electric bidet seat, you’ll need to have an electric outlet that’s close by – and because it’s a space that gets wet, that outlet must be protected by a ground fault circuit interrupter, or a GFCI. We recommend calling an electrician, such as our sister brand Mister Sparky Electric, for help.
Attaching a bidet sprayer to your toilet is another option, and it’s as easy to install as a toilet seat:
1. Once you figure out which side of the toilet you want the sprayer on, detach the toilet’s water supply hose from the toilet tank’s base.
2. Attach the T-valve to the base.
3. Attach the water supply hose to the bottom connection of the T-valve, then attach the sprayer hose to the top.
4. Attach the sprayer head to other end of the sprayer hose.
5. Turn on the water and make sure it works!
You may be able to Install a bidet toilet seat or sprayer yourself, but if you ever have any questions or need some help, don’t hesitate to give Benjamin Franklin Plumbing a call! Call 1-877-BEN-1776, or contact us online.