Archive for flushability
The Professor is a conscientious toilet expert, and likes to be able to evaluate a toilet’s flushing power as thoroughly as possible. With the Toilet Challenge, a free app now available from American Standard for iPhones, iPods, and iPads, it’s even possible to have some fun with the process.
This app allows users to select a toilet and match it up against any number of adversaries – from bananas to golf balls to chicken nuggets – and flush away. Clearly this “flushability” testing feature of the Toilet Challenge can offer hours of fun on its own (well, the Professor thinks so, anyhow) but the app offers a lot more than just fun and games.
Each of the “challenges” is based on the results of actual product tests, so the app offers a unique way to “try before you buy.” Users can also view product specs and locate local retailers through the app, making toilet shopping an unexpectedly easy and enjoyable experience.
The Professor was pleased to read about a new certification program from NSF International that will offer independent, third-party verification of claims regarding the power of toilet flushes. The new NSF Flushable Consumer Products Certification Program will test to see whether that toilet can really flush 8 lbs of kitty litter or 36 hot dogs. (Note: it can’t, nor should it need to.)
The NSF tests will be performed on a “custom-built flushability rig” that will test the power of a toilet’s flush at varying drainline slopes and pipe diameters. Testing is thorough and includes a toilet bowl and drainline test, a dispersability test, a column settling test and aerobic and anaerobic disintegration tests. NSF will also inspect manufacturing facilities to ensure that products are made in accordance with official specifications and that health and safety measures are being observed.
This program is very new, but the Professor believes it is likely to be adopted by the industry very quickly. “Flushability” certification will help improve the popularity of low-flow toilets amongst – and beyond – the base of green consumers. Certification will also increase retailer confidence in a company’s products, which will potentially offer more marketing opportunities, so it isn’t hard to see how the benefits of certification easily outweigh the costs involved for a manufacturer.
And of course, this program is great news for consumers, who can feel more confident when purchasing a new toilet – which is not by any means an insignificant investment. Naturally, the Professor prefers to do his own hands-on toilet flush testing on a specially constructed rig, but this may not be practical for the average homeowner. Which, of course, is where the convenience of the NSF certification label comes in. Fortunately for all of the Professor’s fellow toilet fanatics out there, product testing videos like the one below abound on YouTube, allowing handymen and women to vicariously enjoy the thrills of a thorough toilet test without risking damage to their plumbing.