When shopping for a new toilet, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is whether to go with a one piece or two piece design. Both have their pros and cons, so let’s take a closer look at the key differences between One Piece vs Two Piece Toilet.
What is a One Piece Toilet?
A one piece toilet, also known as a single piece toilet or unibody toilet, is a toilet where the tank and bowl are fused together as one solid unit. The tank sits directly behind the bowl and is not detachable.
Advantages of One Piece Toilets:
- Stylish, seamless look since the tank and bowl are integrated. This gives a neater appearance as there are no gaps or bolt holes.
- Easier to clean as there are fewer grooves and crevices where dirt can hide.
- Quieter flushing operation due to the direct water path from tank to bowl. No leaks between tank and bowl.
Lower chance of leaks as there is only one seal between the tank and bowl. In two piece toilets, there are two potential leak points.
- Takes up less space as the tank sits lower behind the bowl. A good choice for small bathrooms.
What is a Two Piece Toilet?
As the name suggests, two piece toilets have separate tank and bowl components that are bolted together upon installation. The tank sits higher above the back of the bowl and is connected using a special gasket and set of bolts.
Advantages of Two Piece Toilets:
- Tend to be more affordable and available in more styles than one piece models.
- Easier to transport and install due to lighter individual tank and bowl pieces. This also makes repairs and part replacement easier later on.
- The gap between tank and bowl makes cleaning behind and around the toilet easier.
- Wider range of replacement seats and lids available since two piece bowls use standard sizes and designs.
One Piece vs Two Piece: Ease of Cleaning
When it comes to cleaning, one piece toilets tend to have the advantage. With fewer joints and no gaps between tank and bowl, there are fewer places for dirt, grime, and mold to accumulate. The smooth, seamless exterior can simply be wiped clean.
With two piece designs, the gap between tank and bowl can collect dust and dirt over time. This area needs to be cleaned to prevent buildup and bacteria growth. However, the separation also makes cleaning the exterior of the bowl easier since you can access all sides.
Overall, one piece toilets require less frequent scrubbing and cleaning thanks to the seamless bowl and tank. Just don’t forget to sanitize the flush lever and other surfaces regularly.
One Piece vs Two Piece Toilet: Ease of Installation
Two piece toilets generally have the upper hand when it comes to installation. The tank can be fastened to the bowl once it is in place, allowing the components to be installed individually. The smaller tank and bowl pieces are also lighter and easier to handle in tight spaces.
Since one piece toilets are a solid unit, they tend to be heavier and more cumbersome to maneuver into position. The entire toilet needs to be lifted at once without damaging the ceramic. For do-it-yourselfers, a two piece toilet may be the simpler option requiring less heavy lifting.
Many homeowners choose to hire professional plumbers to install new toilets. With proper equipment and experience, pros can handle both one and two piece installations with ease. This helps minimize stress and errors during the toilet replacement process.
One Piece vs Two Piece: Flushing Power and Performance
When it comes to flushing performance both one and two piece toilets can be designed for optimal efficiency. The newest models use innovative engineering for a strong, effective flush.
One potential advantage of one piece toilets is slightly better flushing power and flow. Because the tank water enters the bowl directly without leaks between components, maximum water volume is delivered with each flush.
However, modern two piece toilets can perform equally well with advances like dual flush systems, larger trapways, and precision engineered tanks and bowls. As long as you choose a toilet with at least a 1.6 gallon flush capacity, you’ll get solid performance whether you opt for a one or two piece model.
Read More: Chair Height vs Comfort Height Toilet: Key Differences
One Piece vs Two Piece Toilet: Style and Design Options
There’s no denying that one piece toilets have a sleek, seamless look that works well with contemporary bathrooms. The lack of visible bolts and small gap between tank and bowl create a streamlined silhouette.
However, two piece toilets offer a wider range of styles to match your space. From classic designs to modern curved bowls to space-saving compact models, two piece units provide more choice. The ability to separately pick a tank and bowl combination allows more customization too.
One piece toilets do come in a variety of shapes, heights, and colors. But the selection is still more limited, especially for choices like bidet seats and toddler-size models. Keep available options in mind if you hope to match your current bathroom decor.
One Piece vs Two Piece: Repairs and Maintenance
When toilet repairs eventually become necessary, two piece models may have the advantage. With separate tank and bowl components, only one piece typically needs fixing or replacing. And replacement parts tend to be widely available and lower cost.
With one piece toilets, damage or leaks often require replacing the entire unit. Finding an exact model match for repairs can also be tricky, especially for older toilets. Since the tank and bowl are fused together, both sides get replaced regardless of where the actual problem occurred.
Routine maintenance like replacing flappers, fill valves, and toilet seats is also simpler with two piece toilets. Their common parts make finding replacements easy. One piece designs use more specialized, custom-fit components.
One Piece vs Two Piece: Price Differences
In general, two piece toilets tend to be more wallet-friendly. Their common, mass produced designs keep manufacturing costs lower. Greater availability and competition in the two piece toilet market also creates better value.
One piece toilets usually come with a higher price tag. Producing their seamless, leak-free construction is more complex and demands greater precision. Since fewer manufacturers offer one piece models, there is less price competition too.
However, it is possible to find affordable one piece options under $300 by shopping sales and specials. Look for value-focused brands like Toto and WoodBridge to keep your budget in check. Solid two piece models run from $100 to $250+ depending on features.
The Bottom Line
While one piece toilets have a leg up when it comes to aesthetics and hygiene, two piece models excel at value, installation, and maintenance. Choosing between them really depends on your priorities.
If style and easy cleaning are most important, opt for a one piece toilet. For affordability, a wider range of designs, and easier repairs down the road, go with a reliable two piece model. Either can be an excellent addition to your bathroom with the right choice.
Are one piece toilets more expensive?
Yes, one piece toilets typically cost $100-300 more than similar two piece models due to more complex manufacturing and lower market competition.
Do one piece toilets clog less?
Yes, the direct flush path results in fewer clogs compared to two piece toilets, which can develop leaks between the tank and bowl over time.
Are one piece toilets harder to install?
Yes, their heavier single piece construction makes positioning and aligning the toilet more challenging during installation.
Do two piece toilets leak more?
Yes, leaks can develop between the tank and bowl from deteriorating bolts and gaskets. One piece models eliminate this risk.
Can any seat fit a one piece toilet?
No, you need a custom contoured seat designed specifically for that one piece model to fit correctly.
Read Next: The Pros and Cons of Dual Flush vs Single Flush Toilets