Anyone who as watched a low-flow toilet balk at flushing one kleenex and wondered who approved its production will be happy to know that there are indeed good low-flow toilets and bad low-flow toilets.
Better yet: There is a list!
According to CBC’s consumer protection show Marketplace in 2003,
Roman Kaszczij runs the city of Toronto’s toilet replacement program. He says there are hundreds of CSA-approved six litre toilets on the Canadian market. He hasn’t tested all of them — but only 24 meet his standards.
“We did a test a couple of years ago. We just pulled toilets off the shelf and tested them. Over 50 per cent of them did not flush with six litres,” Kaszczij said.
Kaszczij needs to know which toilets do work. Toronto offers a $60 – $75 rebate for anyone who will replace a water waster with a low-flow toilet. But there is a catch: you have to buy one of the 24 toilets on Kaszczij’s list.
Well, that was 5 long years ago. Now there are more toilets on the City of Toronto’s Hit List:
List of actually effective Low-Flow toilets (updated May 2011!)
By the way, CMHC/SCHL provides a list of some of the bad low-flow toilets in this article. That article also includes a list of good toilets. Here is a link to all of CMHC/SCHL’s toilet-related research to date. These researchers were involved in the study that forms the rationale for the Toronto list and their elaborate testing method is detailed here – complete with pictures and elaborate tables. I am happy to see that there was an effort to test them using some kind of actual shit substitute rather than relying on wishful greenness. A few other non-technical background articles relating to the study (including reactions by some manufacturers) are here and here. It seems that these researchers are actually the vanguard of toilet testing in North America. Now that we can put our plungers down, we can salute them for their valuable work!