QUESTION: We”™re looking at replacing our toilet as part of a wider bathroom renovation we”™re considering but I don”™t know where to start. What are my options? ANSWER: Most of us go to a lot of trouble to make our toilet as discreet as possible but it’s worth paying some serious attention to the smallest seat in the house says Jacob Downey from Downey Plumbing.media_cameraJacob Downey from Downey Plumbing“You really do get what you pay for with toilets,” he says.“Because it’s porcelain if it is not cooked (fired) right, one side might sit up a bit high but if you go with a better brand where they put more time into the product, you’ll be fine.”Jacob recommends local manufacturers such as Caroma, available from retailers such as Bunnings, over cheap Chinese imports which can cost more money in the long run.“Sometimes they don’t seal properly and you need to use silicon which doesn’t always work and you end up with water trickling down the bottom,” Jacob says. FLUSH WITH ADVICEWhile installing your own toilet is not completely beyond the realms of possibility, especially if you are not changing the water access point, most people will be looking to get the job done professionally.Bunnings has teamed up with online home improvement services provider, hipages to provide a toilet suite installation service. For a fixed price of $275, plus the cost of the toilet, customers will be connected with a trusted local tradie such as Jacob from the service platform to perform the job.The price covers removal of your old toilet, standard installation parts and the installation of a front-of-wall cistern and toilet. Plumbing in freshwater and the waste outlet as well as sealing of the toilet to the floor is also included.media_cameraThe Mondella bathroom suite has a contemporary style perfect for families.Jacob says what style of toilet you choose will depend on a number of factors.“People love back-to-wall toilets because they are easy to keep clean,” he says.“Floating toilets are good too if you can install them properly with fixed brackets and supports in the wall but everything has to be perfect before you install it. If it is 5mm out, it will leak.”Concealed cisterns where only the flush button is visible can cost more to install but there are more benefits to them than just the streamlined look.“If you have a small bathroom, a concealed cistern can save 100mm,” Jacob says.If you do go down this path, he says it is even more critical that the installation is done well.“As soon as something major goes wrong, you may be up for ripping tiles off the wall,” he says. “If you have a bedroom behind, it can be easier to access from that side through the plasterboard.“Once you rip tiles out, you are potentially damaging the waterproof membrane as well.” More:hipages.com.au; bunnings.com.au/toilet-installation-faqs; caroma.com.aumedia_cameraCaroma Cleanflush Liano toilet with concealed cistern. LIFTING THE LIDThere’s more to toilets than where to put the toilet roll holder ● Most people consider replacing their toilet as part of a wider bathroom renovation. Jacob advises over preparing before you call in quotes by having your specifications, tile, toilet, vanity and bath preferences ready. ● Chances are you’ll get tired of your toilet before it wears out. A good quality toilet should last at leat 15 years Jacob says. ● If you’re not hiring a designer, ask your plumber for advice about your bathroom layout. An experienced tradie will know what works well in most spaces. ● Go for quality. Local brands such as Caroma won’t cost the earth but they will stand up to the wear and tear of daily family life. Look at the WELS water rating for a guide to the best performing loos.