So your toilet seat has broken. Perhaps the soft close hinge has started slamming or the seat has cracked. You can just buy any seat to replace it right? Wrong.
Toilet seats are more diverse than people realise. A quick look around our showroom will give you an idea of the plethora of different shaped toilets from a range of different manufacturers. Almost all of these toilet pans will have different dimensions, and so the seats do as well. Beyond that, many of them will have different types of hinges and fixings which means that you need to take care in selecting the correct seat for your toilet.
In an ideal world, you will already know what brand and model your toilet is, which makes it very easy for our showroom team to find a matching seat, often with a few options. However, what if you have no idea what the toilet is? Perhaps you just moved into the house and it was already fitted, or you bought the toilet a decade ago and simply don’t remember. Well don’t worry, there are some options and we are here to help.
We’d rather you didn’t bring a used toilet seat into the showroom to show us for hygiene reasons. So here’s how we can go about finding the right replacement without it.
The first thing to do is get measurements, the width and depth of the top of the toilet pan. Even better, if you still have the old seat then make a template for us to work from. You can do this by using a piece of card big enough to put the seat on, or a large piece of paper (even newspaper will do as long as we can see the template!) and draw around the seat.
We also need to pair these measurements up with the shape. If you’ve drawn a template that’s already sorted but if you just have the dimensions then you would also need to supply us with a few pictures of the toilet so we can figure out if it’s oval, D-shaped, square etc.
The next thing we need to know about is the hinges. Not all toilet seats fit in the same way. Some fix from the top with a screw, some from underneath the pan, some push on and others have latching quick release functions. Be sure to take some pictures so we can see how it fits.
We will also need to know the distance between the hole centres so that we can ensure a replacement seat can be fixed into the same fittings. You can do this by measuring the distance between the centre of the hole on one side of the toilet pan, to the centre of the other hole.
It’s worth noting that whilst we can find a replacement seat for most toilets, some have proprietary fittings which means they must be replaced with the correct seat by the correct manufacturer. In those instances, we will have to do more research to try and find the correct seat.
Lastly, we may have some options about what material you can choose for your seat! This isn’t always the case and often you’re limited by what fits the toilet but typically you will be choosing either a wooden seat, or a PVC plastic seat.
There’s a few variations within these but the general rule is that whilst PVC seats are fine to sit on, the lids are not safe to sit on and will break quite easily if you do. Wood seats and lids are significantly stronger and heavier so you can sit on the lids, but they are susceptible to water damage if the varnish is perforated or wears away with use.
Please also take a look at this handy video which shows you how to identify, change and measure your toilet seat.