Water Closet vs Lavatory: Everything You Need to Know
In modern homes, the terms water closet and lavatory are often used interchangeably to refer to the bathroom. However, they have different meanings and functions. Understanding these differences can help you make informed decisions when choosing between the two.
What is a Water Closet and How Does it Work?
A water closet, commonly known as a toilet, is a plumbing fixture designed for the disposal of human waste. It consists of a bowl connected to a drainage system that disposes of the waste into a septic tank or a public sewer system.
When you flush the water closet, a tank of water empties into the bowl, creating a flow of water that carries waste through the drainage system. Most modern water closets use a siphonic mechanism to create a powerful flush that efficiently disposes of waste with minimal water use.
Water closets come in different shapes, sizes, and styles to suit various needs, and they can be installed in different configurations, including wall-mounted, floor-mounted, or suspended. The design of a water closet determines its efficiency, durability, and comfort.
What is a Lavatory and How Does it Work?
A lavatory, also known as a bathroom sink or basin, is a plumbing fixture designed for washing hands, face, and other personal hygiene tasks. It usually consists of a basin and a faucet that delivers water for washing, and a drainage system that carries the used water away from the basin.
A lavatory can be installed with or without a cabinet or countertop, and it can come in various materials, including porcelain, ceramic, stainless steel, or glass. The design of a lavatory usually determines its durability, ease of cleaning, and aesthetic appeal.
Water Closet vs Lavatory: Differences and Similarities
While water closets and lavatories serve different functions, they have some similarities and differences that are worth noting. Here are some of them:
Function: As mentioned earlier, a water closet is designed for the disposal of human waste, while a lavatory is used for personal hygiene tasks such as washing hands or face. While you can use a water closet for washing hands, it’s not hygienic nor recommended.
Layout: Water closets and lavatories can be installed in the same room or different rooms, depending on the design of your home or building. However, they are often separated to create more privacy and convenience, especially in public restrooms.
Water usage: Water closets usually require more water per flush than lavatories. A standard water closet might use up to 1.6 gallons of water per flush, while a lavatory faucet might use less than 0.5 gallons per minute.
Maintenance: Both water closets and lavatories require some level of maintenance to function efficiently. Water closets need regular cleaning to prevent blockages, and lavatories need proper drainage to prevent clogs.
Cost: The cost of installing a water closet or lavatory depends on several factors, including the design, materials used, and labor costs. Generally, water closets are more expensive to install and maintain than lavatories due to their plumbing requirements.
Q: Can a water closet and lavatory be installed in the same room?
A: Yes, they can be installed in the same room, especially in home bathrooms. However, in public restrooms, they are usually separated to create more privacy and convenience.
Q: What are the benefits of installing a water closet?
A: Water closets provide a hygienic and efficient way of disposing of human waste. They are also easy to use and come in various designs to suit various needs.
Q: What are the benefits of installing a lavatory?
A: Lavatories provide a convenient and hygienic way of washing hands and face. They also come in various designs to suit various needs and add aesthetic appeal to the bathroom.
Q: Can a water closet be replaced with a lavatory?
A: No, a water closet cannot be replaced with a lavatory, and vice versa, as they serve different functions.
In conclusion, understanding the differences and similarities between water closets and lavatories can help you make informed decisions when choosing between the two. Whether you need a water closet or a lavatory, choosing a high-quality design that meets your needs can provide years of hygienic and efficient service.