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Design Considerations for Wall-Hung Toilets

Posted by: Abram Richardson, Senior Plumbing and Fire Sprinkler Designer on Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Toilets may not be a high priority when property owners select a design team to make their visions a reality.  But when they’re looking for a clean and simple appearance, architects may extend this design philosophy into the building’s restrooms where wall-hung toilets may be specified. Wall-hung toilets can add to the appearance of a restroom, but certain requirements can easily be overlooked when considering the use of these types of fixtures.

Floor space in a building is valuable and the architect should try to provide as much usable area as possible.  When comparing floor-mounted to wall-hung toilets floor space is an issue. Floor-mounted toilets can be installed in either a single or back-to-back configuration with a 4” thick wet wall to conceal piping services. In comparison, wall-hung toilets require chases large enough to conceal the piping services as well as the fixture carrier system. The required chase size may depend upon the type of carrier used. A single wall hung toilet may require a chase with a clear floor space of 10-1/2” for the carrier to be anchored to the floor structure. Back-to-back toilets could require a chase with a clear floor space of 14-1/2”. The floor space required for wall-hung toilets should be reviewed by the architect and owner to determine if the appearance and ease of cleaning are important enough to sacrifice the floor area required for these types of fixtures.

The cost of a wall-hung toilet is similar to a floor-mounted fixture however the carrier system will add to their overall cost. Additionally the labor for installing the carrier systems may add to the cost over that of the floor mounted equivalent.  

Few would argue against the aesthetically clean and simple appearance that wall-hung toilets provide in comparison to their floor mounted counterparts.  Add to that the ease of cleaning the floor directly below and around the toilet, then every building should have wall-hung toilets. However, floor space is an important consideration for the architectural team and property owner during the building design phase. By working together the right choices can be reached to make the owners vision a reality.

Rough-in for floor-mounted toilet. No carrier system is required so the wet wall is a standard 2”x4” stud wall.

Rough-in for a wall-hung toilet, which requires more wall cavity space to house the carrier system.  

     

The two pictures above show the difference between a floor-mounted toilet (left) and a wall-hung toilet (right). The area below the wall-hung toilet is accessible for cleaning more of the restroom floor area.