Toto Guinevere - so disappointed! looong review

washergirlJanuary 14, 2009

Doing a recent search, Toto doesnt seem to have this exact toilet on their website anymore, but it is still sold online. I wanted to share my experience to help others who may be shopping for this toilet or other Toto toilets that share the same features. FYI Â it is hard to do a toilet review without discussing certain bodily functions. IÂve tried to be as delicate as possible, but wanted to give a heads up to the squeamish.

I recently renovated our bathroom and chose the Toto Guinevere 1.6 with Sanagloss for several reasons:

- I wanted a one-piece, skirted toilet for ease of cleaning (lots of males in this house that canÂt seem to hit the mark if their life depended on it),

- I also wanted improved performance over the existing, $50 builderÂs toilet that was in our 10-year old home (one time flushing, less clogs, etc).

- I was also drawn to the "double cyclone" flushing system that, according to company literature (now looking at TotoÂs website for the "double cyclone", this description has been changed  I wonder why?) at the time I purchased the toilet claimed "Using two powerful nozzles, the Double Cyclone flushing system creates a forceful centrifugal action that cleans the rim and bowl thoroughly with every flush. The rim has no holes, which makes it easier to clean and offers a seamless appearance". I wanted a toilet that would flush all  remnants down, on the first flush.

- Sanagloss  cleaning again  though I actually think it is really more of a preventative for hard water staining. HavenÂt had the toilet long enough to comment on that

- I liked the look of it  it has an attractive appearance (for a toilet) that fit in with our traditional décor

- Based on the fanatical obsession of Toto owners, I figured I couldnÂt go wrong with any model I chose

From the first day, however, I have been sadly disappointed in this toilet.

My first issue is with the noises this toilet makes. When you use it, as soon as any liquid enters the bowl, it begins to make a trickling or dripping noise. This also happens intermittently after flushing. I called Toto and they told me that when extra liquid in the bowl is introduced it will drain out  to balance the water levels  all toilets do it, but most have porcelain trapways so you donÂt hear it. This toilet (and several other Toto toilets) has this PVC unifit rough-in that causes you to be able to hear this happening. IÂve found info on this via Google searches and people say you get "used" to it  like a cuckoo clock. Well, I donÂt really want to have to get used to my $700, brand-new toilet making weird noises that most other toilets do not  especially if it is not due to some sort of wildly improved performance. Even if I was okay with "getting used to it", EVERY guest that uses my bathroom tells me afterwards that my toilet is leaking. I really donÂt want to have to explain this situation to every visitor for years to come (someone suggested hanging a framed explanation over the toilet - just the touch of elegance I am looking for...) The Toto rep gave me an adjustment I could do that reduces how much water is in the bowl so that it takes more liquid to start the dripping. This "fix" results in almost an empty toilet bowl, however, which looks strange and would likely exacerbate the "sticking" problem I am also having (see next paragraph).

The "double cyclone" technology is not exactly living up to its billing, either. The entire flush basically consists of a gentle swirl of water around the bowl with a lazy gurgle at the bottom. There is absolutely no force behind it at all and anything that gets stuck to the bowl (waste getting stuck to the bowl happens far more with this toilet than any other IÂve used  not sure why) is not rinsed away, even after multiple flushings. Solid waste requires two flushings EVERY time  the first gets most of it, the second to get all the floating little pieces that are always left behind (sorry to be gross). You then must use a toilet brush to clean what is still stuck to the bowl EVERY time you introduce solid waste. I did not have to do this with my builder-grade toilet  it usually needed two flushings, but took care of everything with the second flush 90% of the time. The Toto rep confirmed that the "double cyclone" is just water entering the bowl out of two sideways holes rather than several under the rim so that the water simply falls into the bowl in a circle instead of straight down. He told me "itÂs not like there is any extra water pressure or anything". Silly me  how could I have misinterpreted "powerful nozzles" and "forceful centrifugal action" to mean that there might be water pressure enabling the toilet to actually do what they said it would? In reality, while the cyclone thing might rinse under the rim a bit better, by the time it has swirled around the top of the bowl, there is actually LESS force by the time it reaches the lower part of the bowl than a traditional toilet so it doesnÂt rinse the entire bowl as well.

IÂve had the toilet for about 6 weeks and it clogged for the first time 2 weeks ago. That puts me right about where I was with my old toilet  about a clog a month. My husband also said the Toto was much harder to plunge for some reason.

On the positive side, the toilet IS very nice looking and I love the one-piece/skirting from a cleaning standpoint. I also like the two-single holes from the double-cyclone as opposed to the under-rim holes which created an impossible-to-clean crevice. Overall, however, I am so disappointed in this toilet  especially for the price. I almost replaced all three toilets in my house with Totos at the same time  I am so relieved now that I didnÂt  canÂt imagine I would ever choose a Toto again. I know people love Totos and IÂm not trying to start a war. I just wish it was easier to pick a decent toilet and know what you are getting up front (it is not as if you can return themÂ). I found the marketing/description of this toilet to be very misleading. Hopefully my experience will be useful to someone. IÂve gotten a lot of great information from this site, but probably donÂt share information as often as I should.

** One thing worth noting for anyone wanting a skirted toilet  you will probably need to have your water line relocated  moved out about 2" to accommodate the wider back of the toilet. Obviously makes a big hole in the wall and increases installation costs. It wasnÂt an issue for us as we were gutting the bathroom and the plumbing supply place made us aware of this at the time of purchase, however, if you werenÂt aware of this I could see it being an unpleasant surprise if you purchased this toilet online and were just hoping to swap out an existing toilet in a wallpapered bathroom, for example.

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I don't own a Guinevere but I do have a Skirted Carlyle that uses the same PVC pipe. I never hear this noise you describe. I have had the Carlyle in three different houses. Do you know if you have a cast iron pipe for your toilet? Several people on the forum have the Guinevere on this forum and seem to like it. You may want to post on the Terry Love forum since he installs a lot of Totos and maybe he can guide you to get to a point where you are not plunging the toilet daily and you lose some of the noise. If after all that you still can't get the toilet to work to your satisfaction, put it on ebay or Craigslist and get yourself something else. Life is too short to live with something you are unhappy with and have to use daily.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 1:10PM
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I was warned away from Toto's because of their tendency to leave skid marks. I know that's not the opinion in this forum, but I'm going to most likely be avoiding them.

I've talked to a couple of people at bathroom design/plumbing supply stores and they say they get this complaint about toto's.

Thanks for your comprehensive review and for your tasteful handling of a delicate subject! Sorry you are having this problem. That trickling sound would drive me crazy.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 1:39PM
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I'm doubly sorry about this post. Based on all the great reviews about Totos I read here, I have two Totos in their boxes, waiting to get installed in the soon-to-be renovated upstairs BRs. This is very discouraging. I can't remember which Toto I chose, but I hope it performs better than what was said. Sorry for your troubles!

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 3:13PM
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Nothing but good things to say about my Toto Drake. Glad I didn't get the model you have! Sorry for your troubles, but good on you for posting it- will save someone else!

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 4:42PM
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Washergirl - sorry to read about all the problems with your Toto. What a disappointment!

We have a Toto Ultramax in our MBR. After flushing it makes a sort of gasping sound for a few minutes. Both the plumbers and DH say that this is caused by an air bubble. It does need extra flushes occasionally. It does not cope with significant solid waste very well. Not to give TMI or be too blunt, but we have learned to flush while still, ah, "going", so that Mr. Toto is not overwhelmed. Otherwise, out comes the plunger.

OTOH, it is very comfortable when sitting.

We have a Toto Drake in our front/guest bathroom, and it behaves as Totos are supposed to. Fast flush, no clogs, no noise. But it is small, due to the size of the small toilet niche (in a 1933 house).

Neither Toto has ever left skid marks; both are very easy to clean.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 4:52PM
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I have 4 Toto Drakes waiting to be installed. I researched as well as I could (didn't know about this forum) before I bought them. I found positive things everywhere so I am so sorry to hear of your disappointment. We purchased the "Drake" also. I will update if we ever get ours installed:)

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 7:47PM
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Yikes! My Toto Neorest 500 is arriving tomorrow and I think it has cyclone flush too. It's going to be awhile until it's installed and I hope it's worth the $1K price tag.

    Bookmark   January 14, 2009 at 9:03PM
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We have two Toto Ultramax toilets. One is a standard, round and the other is a ADA height, elongated. One is just over a year old and one is 3 months old. Both flush quickly (21 seconds..I just timed it) and quietly after the first initial "gulp" that lasts about 3 seconds. As far as I know, both have removed all waste, every time, the first time. They use the G-Max flushing system. I am beyond thrilled with our new toilets! Their flushing capabilities still continue to amaze me a year later. Those that are having problems with getting rid of solids in the first flush, have you considered there might be a problem further down the line? I'm not a plumber but it seems like sluggish lines, full septic tanks, etc could affect the flush??
Washergirl, can you return the toilet and tell them it simply doesn't work like a $700 should!? I would certainly expect to be able to trade it for a different model or brand. I'm sorry your Toto experience hasn't been a good one :(

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 1:44AM
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I also have a Toto Ultramax - standard height elongated. It looks really nice; the one-piece design is very easy to keep clean; and it's very comfortable. Most of the time it flushes okay - as in effectively, and it's actually quieter than I expected based on people's reports.

OTOH, I do get, er, skid marks occassionally, and I've had to pull out the plunger twice in two months (something I was hoping never to have to do again). It takes more vigorous effort to plunge than my old (ancient) toilet. It's a good workout. :-)

Overall, I'm a little disappointed with it, but not so much that I'm unhappy (if that makes any sense).

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 2:41AM
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Added note to my Toto Drake- it has been in service for 6 months and never required a plunger. Plunging was at LEAST a weekly occurrence with the old builder grade toilet.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 7:03AM
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Jean Bo

I too replaced builder junky toilet that required plunging constantly not to mention the continual replacement of flushing mechanics. After intensive research I purchased a Skirted Carolina. We had to switch to the 10" set back cause my powder room has a large marble baseboard. We were really close on the shut off valve but didn't have to move it either. We LOVE this toilet and I have never heard the noises your speaking of but we installed on concrete under marble floor. We have only had to pull the plunger out one time in 3 years and it was an easy 1-2 pump and we were back in business. I had a friend of mine stay in my house once when I was away and when I returned she even commented how nice the toilet was. I suggest you try and return for a different model after all don't they have a 1-year warranty. Personally I would not consider putting in anything else but a Toto toilet. But I know they have different flushing technologies so maybe you can switch it up.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 8:53AM
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Regarding the dripping sound for the water balance- we recently bought two Soirees (twin of the Guinevere). To address that problem I simply took some cotton acoustic insulation and put it in the open backing of the toilet around the Unifit adapter. Voila! Noise virtually eliminated. I think Toto should provide something similar from the factory as it was a simple mitigation.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 11:13AM
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Sorry to hear about your problems with Guinevere. Thank you for your lengthy review.

We recently installed a Promenade and a Clayton - both GMax without sanagloss - in 2 of our 3 bathrooms. I had been looking at the Guinevere but hubby didn't want that model because the water lines would need to be relocated. Think I'll just stick with another GMax flush model that we won't have to fuss with.

As far as the two toilets we have, they replaced Kohlers of unknown age. Both clogged terribly. One was in use by my 3 kids and require plunging at least once a week. We've had to plunge once in the 6 months we've had these installed. We don't have skid mark issues or flushing issues. They are a bit louder than the old toilets, but run for so much less time due to less water.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 11:40AM
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I think my current toilet belongs in the toilet hall of fame. It was manufactured in June, 1947. The date is stamped on the back of the tank, and I know my house was built around that time.

It has been a no-fail workhorse for the 34 years that I have owned the house. The innards of the tank have had to be replaced a couple times, but I have NEVER had to plunge it, ever. It's the only upstairs toilet and served me and my husband and two sons until they grew up and moved out.

It was made by American Standard. I'll be sad to see it go. The bowl has taken on a permanent yellow cast and some scratches, or I'd consider keeping it.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 12:50PM
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Detired, you could probably sell it on Craigs List. There is a market of older toilets.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 4:49PM
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Hey dedtired, we must have had the same toilet! My building was built in 1948, and I'm pretty sure I had the original toilet. The tank was ENORMOUS - all the contractors who came over to bid said so. It took forever to flush, and if you had to flush twice, you'd be in the bathroom for half an hour. I couldn't wait to get rid of this thing.

It might have been worth money??? Oh well. ;-)

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 5:17PM
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I was told that we could get $400 for our old water guzzling toilets on the "black market" Don't know if it's true. We gave one away and, and, and....I'm not sure what DH did with the other one It's just gone, so I'm happy. I've never looked back. LOVE LOVE our Totos!

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 5:47PM
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Thanks washergirl, I feel vindicated. I thought that I was the only one who felt this way about my Totos. I've had my Ultramax and Aquia for 3 years and have learned to live with the dripping, but I hate having to flush and flush and flush, and clean and clean and clean. I really haven't had to plunge more than once or twice in 3 years, and I can tell you that the plunger that looks like an accordian worked like a charm, but I'm still not the thrilled Toto customer that I had hoped to be. So thanks for letting me know that I'm not alone.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 8:16PM
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like sandra, we have a clayton and a promenade (2 promenades actually). We've had them for about 18 months and I've had to plunge once. We used to plunge weekly. I've also noticed that we don't ever get skid marks anymore. I remember doing a lot of research on the different flushing actions of the TOTO before we bought and liking what we read about the one the clayton has (sorry can't remember which one now). We got the promenades for the 2 powder rooms that don't get the "heavy" use. It's really odd to read such diverse experiences with the totos. I wonder if the flushing action is what makes the difference?

    Bookmark   January 15, 2009 at 11:31PM
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We have a Carrollton (elongated) and a Drake (round front). I am not a huge fan. Yes, they are an improvement over the old toilets they replaced, but the Carrollton requires numerous flushes and the surface acquired water staining within only a year. The Drake seems more sturdy but the supposedly wider trapway still gets clogged. Very frustrating!

Even though our plumber recommends Toto, I must say I won't be a loyal customer in the future. At that price, they should be reliable, quiet and easier to keep clean.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 8:55AM
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Thanks to everyone for your feedback/sympathy. I've seen some posts wondering if I have an installation issue - that was my original thought as well. When I called Toto CS, that was actually my first question - if an installation issue could be causing my problems. I was so hoping he would say yes, but instead told me that my issues were common, normal, and that the toilet was functioning just fine (he listened to it over the phone, had me flush a penny, etc.)

I also checked on the Terry Love forums, as suggested, and it seems the "trickling" noise is common and his opinion is that you should just get over it. He equates it to the sound of your freezer's ice maker filling in one response. I'd probably be fine with the noise if it was 1) typical of all toilets - i.e. all ice makers make the same noise - everyone knows what it is so no explanation necessary, 2) a trade-off for some sort of performance improvement (if there is one, I haven't discovered it yet), and 3) expected - I feel there should be a footnote in the literature or something so that you know what you are getting before you make the purchase. That is one reason I wrote this post is to let people know what they might expect and can factor the information into their purchasing decision.

Alot of people have said the "skid mark" issue improves over time with the sanagloss - I sure hope so! My old toilet did it also, but on the second flush it usually took care of everything - especially if it was below the waterline. The Toto doesn't rinse anything off - even if you let it "soak" for a while. It doesn't seem to be as much of an issue if you situate yourself perfectly and "hit the hole" with precision aim. I've been giving my children lessons in hopes of reducing the problem. It does seem a bit ridiculous for a toilet to have such a learning curve to use, however. Unfortunately, it is in our powder room, and I draw the line at giving my guests the same detailed instructions on use (they probably do as well :)

I am curious how the one poster added the insulation around the pipe - very clever idea - I am assuming this happened prior to installation? I didn't have any cotton acoustic insulation (where would you get this?), so I tried stuffing some carpet padding around the pvc pipe in the back, but it didn't help muffle the noise. There is only a couple inches clearance between the wall and baseboard, so it is pretty hard to get back there.

I guess I was just expecting more and better at this price point and after reading so many rave reviews about Totos.

Thanks again to all that resonded. This forum is such a great source of information!

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 11:32AM
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>> It doesn't seem to be as much of an issue if you situate yourself perfectly and "hit the hole" with precision aim. I've been giving my children lessons in hopes of reducing the problem.

OMG. I can just imagine these lessons.


    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 3:13PM
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This post needs a Warning Label: Do Not Read At Work in Your Cubicle!!! (Trying not to laugh out loud is making me choke!) "Skid Marks" - I'll NEVER see this term again without laughing.

Seriously, sorry for all your trouble but really glad you posted this. I'm in the planning stages of a remodel and had put Toto on the list. It sounds as though some models are better than others, though?

How does one choose?

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 4:39PM
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Oh, I'm so sorry to hear about your problems with the Guinevere. We're getting ready to build and that model was tops on my list. We're leaving a 1920s house with its original fixtures. I'm not sure we've ever plunged. Those old toilets would suck down a bowling ball if you took a notion to plop one in the bowl! I'm nervous about this bit of modern technology. : )

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 7:20PM
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I was sad to lose my Kohler from 1984 after reading about the problems with newer toilets. But the color had to go when we remodeled.

I researched and got the Toto Drake. It looks like a toilet should, no skid marks, and doesn't make the trickling sound the OP talked about. BUT!!!...... in 24 years, we never had ONE clog in that toilet (Master bath).... since installing the Drake we've had two in 4 months. I can't imagine if we had kids using it....

The other toilets in the house are white and I'll be hanging onto them for dear life.... I do wish at least one of them was the taller height for friends who come to visit and are getting older, but I'm not wanting to deal with clogs.

    Bookmark   January 16, 2009 at 11:14PM
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We have the Ultramax (standard bowl, not elongated). No problems, no drips....had to replace the valve after Year 1, but no problems in the 4 years since. Much better flushing, no 'skid marks' and have only plunged twice in 5 years.

I have heard that elongated toilets have more problems with the reduced 1.6 flush, and it sounds like this might be a factor?

Sorry your Toto Guinevere was a disappointment for you - what a bummer after spending so much $$$.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 12:00AM
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So sorry you don't like your Guinevere. I've had one for about 6 months and I really like it. It does make a slight dripping sound, but it only lasts for a few seconds. I've never had to flush more than once, either. It hasn't clogged up at all.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 1:14AM
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Washergirl- I'm the one who put the insulation in behind the drain.

I had seen the posts about the dripping noise, but didn't realize what they were really saying as we also have had a Toto Vespin for years and didn't have that problem. The open back on many of the one piece units are the basic cause.

I had already put the first toilet in, so I ended up stuffing this cotton insulation in around it from the back side. I'm not sure where it's readily available locally for you. We got our stuff from I had some left over since we had really made an effort to soundproof/vibration proof our bathroom where the airjet tub went in. We used a sheet of mass loaded vinyl and got a couple of rolls of this R13 cotton insulation, so we had plenty for the small toilet space too.

I would think you could almost use any kind of acoustic absorbing material. Even places like Best Buy have sound absorbing mats for car stereo usage that would probably work. I think for our second toilet I'm going to surround the unifit with the soft cotton batts, then use the mass loaded vinyl cut to tuck in around the back. That should completely dampen the sound.

Hope that helps. Luckily, we haven't had any problems with our old or new Toto's flushing. The Sanagloss on them definnitely is simpler to clean than our old toilets.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 7:18PM
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Benguin - thank you for the extra info! I'll keep trying

    Bookmark   January 17, 2009 at 7:30PM
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We recently completed a major home renovation and got Toto Aquia toilets in both bathrooms, as people spoke very highly of them (plus our architect loves them). We are having some of the same issues as washergirl. Yes, we get the trickling noise although we've gotten used to it. We haven't found that the toilet has any problems flushing waste; we very, very rarely have to flush twice and it has never once clogged. The issue is the low water level. Let's just say that unless you have unerring aim the bowl gets dirty and the flush does not wash down the sides. This is a toilet for somebody who doesn't mind cleaning a toilet each and every time they use it. (Imagine having to explain that and apologize for it to guests!)

Another rather indelicate issue is splashing when we use the toilet. It's apparently related to the low water level and the distance waste has to travel but I haven't heard anybody else comment on this so I don't know if it's something weird about us, or the toilet, or both. (Or maybe people are just too embarrassed to talk about it.) I have never (well, rarely) encountered this problem with other toilets!

BTW does anybody know how to adjust the water level in the bowl so it will be a bit deeper?

    Bookmark   January 18, 2009 at 4:41PM
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I really, really, really recommend the American Standard Cadet 3.

After reading some reviews of it, I put it one our powder room. That's the toilet that my late MIL used and she ALWAYS clogged our previous toilet at least once each visit. Between the time I installed the Cadet 3 and her death a few years later she didn't clog the toilet once.

I've had almost no "skid marks", never had to flush twice, never had to plunge. It doesn't make funny sounds - no trickling, no gasps, etc. It flushes quickly and efficiently.

I like it so much I've recommended it to everyone I can.

I put one in my master bath, which was remodelled last year -finishing up in November. I'm just as happy with how it's working as I am with the one in the powder room.

I hope American Standard keeps making that model; if they do then that's the only model I'll buy for as long as I live.

PS - the comfort height, elongated was

    Bookmark   January 20, 2009 at 2:16PM
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I thought I was the only iffy toto customer. I resesarched toilets to death when I remodeled my bath. Having never had a low flow toilet in a house i lived in I was concerned. Result Toto Ultramax elongated.

toilet clogs once every month or two. even without a lot of paper. I've come to accept double flushing on it. At first I was blaming Charmin TP, we changed, it helped some.

I'm not sure if this is normal but its certainly not good. Now the real question is what is really better?

    Bookmark   January 21, 2009 at 3:02PM
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On a somewhat lighter note.... I complained about function, or lack thereof earlier, so I won't do that again. But I never mentioned how it hurt to give up style when I turned to Toto. I do love the sleek looks of my Aquia, which is in my powder room and only receives rare usage. But there's absolutely nothing special or even good looking about the Ultramax and I see that all the time as that's the go to toilet in our master bathroom. It wouldn't have been so bad to give up form for function, but having given up both is just sad. Fortunately, it's in its own little room.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2009 at 6:57PM
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I'm trying to figure out where all these negative Toto experiences were in the spring and summer of 07 when we did our bathroom remodel. I rarely came across a negative report. I wish all of you were as happy with your Totos as we are. DH was NOT, I repeat, NOT happy about getting a new toilet for his bathroom. And he was even less impressed with the comfort height Ultramax (sigh) It's gonna be a long "rest of my life" :o I was assured that within the week, he'd be singing it's praises. He did not. It took him about 2 1/2 months and a nasty stomach virus before he admitted he was glad I had his replaced :) Some people don't do too well with change.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2009 at 3:49AM
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I was planning on buying 2 Guinevere Toto Toilets. After reading the reviews, it worries me. I need 2 toilets that are more traditional, skirted, and elongated ADA height. I also thought I wanted the Sanagloss finish due to helping alleviate residual water lines around the bowl.
Does anyone have another option for all these preferences?
Thank you, this forum is great. Golfdiva....or not

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 12:59PM
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So sorry to hear about the OP's problems. I put a Toto Guinevere into my bathroom (the only one functioning at the moment -- all the rest are gutted) 2 months ago, and I have had no problems with it, despite the fact that my husband is - ahem- hard on toilets, and has never understood the function of a toilet brush. I have no dripping noise (or maybe the house has so many noises I don't notice -- radiators, giant 1950's boiler noises, ancient refrigerator humming . . . you get the picture). No "evidence" left. No double flush. We did have the waste lines replaced with cast iron, perhaps that helps.

I've been really really happy with the Guinevere. And I think I'm going to go ahead and order the Soiree for the master bath.

    Bookmark   January 23, 2009 at 3:44PM
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Wanted to chime in and say that we've had similar problems with the Guinevere newly installed into our remodel. Mainly the water dripping. I agree that I'm sorry it wasn't documented anywhere before we bought - I might have considered a different toilet. Now that we have it, I can probably live with it, but it would have been nice to know.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 6:15PM
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Anna Vegia

I just put a Guinevere in my daughters' bathroom. After reading the OP, I have been "testing" it myself for a couple of weeks. I can say that I love it! I noticed the dripping only once, on the day it was installed. Haven't heard it since. As far as keeping it clean, it's so much better than my old American Standard, but anything would have been a step up from that. I love the flush, it is quick, quiet and powerful. I noticed that the water level was low after my contractor used it (!). I think he didn't understand that you have to pull the flusher the whole way up. Nothing too difficult there. Now, all that being said, it is entirely possible that I'll grow to hate this thing the longer it's there, especially if I start experiencing clogs with it. But for now, I think it's a great-looking, well-performing toilet.

    Bookmark   February 2, 2009 at 6:33PM
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I think it may depend somehow on the installation or piping or something. The one in our master bathroom is much more "drippy" than our other ones. I hear it there pretty much anytime I'm in that bathroom, but rarely can hear dripping from any of the other bathrooms. The master also requires you to pull up the handle all the way and hold it for a second to ensure a full flash, so I wonder whether it's off somehow.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 6:13PM
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These reports are really disappointing to read. I too was going to shell out $700 for a toilet--the Soiree model with the Sanagloss. The double cyclone flush sounded good and I thought it used more force too. The $125 Ferber toilet we have is great. Strong flush that swirls the water around the bowl, but it's not the tank style.

If not the Toto, what then? I thought that was the best ;-(.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2009 at 11:21PM
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I don't think anyone is saying all Totos are bad, just that there are some "features" on the Guinevere that aren't well-known. The dripping is the only one that's really an issue for me, and we haven't had clogging problems. So other Totos are fine, or even the Guinevere if the dripping doesn't bother you. I might avoid the double cyclone flush if I were buying again, but there are other choices.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2009 at 3:35PM
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A very satisfied user of the Soiree model here. After one year of occasional use (garage apt. at vacation home) we have had no dripping noise and no clogs. And I love the Sanagloss finish.
I selected Guineveres for the main house, which is still under construction, because its more traditional style will fit better. I hope we do not experience the problems with it that you have reported. Someone on this forum described the Soiree and Guinevere as "twins" and I wonder if that is accurate. They seem to only have minor style differences and both use the same double cyclone flushing action. Any Toto experts out there care to comment on this?

    Bookmark   February 5, 2009 at 6:54PM
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Judy, you say there's nothing special or nice-looking about the Toto Ultramax. I just want to come to its defense a bit - even though I'm a little disappointed with its performance, I actually think it's *very* nice looking - clean and simple and in keeping with my contemporary-style bathroom.

Which isn't to say your opinion is *wrong* - it's just your opinion, as mine is mine. Our experiences with the performance of the toilet are another matter. ;-)

    Bookmark   February 5, 2009 at 9:30PM
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I have had two Toto toilets installed by an excellent plumber 6 months ago. The first Toto was the double cyclonic Soiree and the second for the powder room was an ADA UltraMax with the GMax flush.

Both toilets are much quieter than my previous builder models. I partially agree with the original poster on the cyclonic flush--it isn't as powerful as the GMax flush. But I don't have any leaking sounds from either toilet. Maybe it is due to the quality of the installation.

Anyway, I am re-modelling another bathroom and plan on getting the Toto Lloyd, which is a GMax flush unit. I will then switch out the Soiree to the new bathroom and put the Lloyd in my master bathroom.

Having weaker flushes, particularly without a pressure flush, is just a fact these days with the mandatory water restrictions on toilets. I certainly understand the federal government restrictions on water usage as fresh water is a precious commodity, not only in the US, but very much in the rest of the world. In addition, most cities have very antiquated water systems that need expensive repairs and upgrades. I have read that due to old water pipes there is an astronomical ammount of water that leaks out, putting even more strain on the water systems to deliver clean water. Aging and leaking water pipes waste billions of gallons daily. The cost to fix them could be $500 billion over the next 30 years, the federal government estimates.

Not to get too political, but I certainly hope that there is considerable funding in the economic stimulus package for our numerous water systems. Not only would this be good for immediate employment, but it would be a great asset going forward, as clean water gets increasingly harder to get and gets more expensive.


    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 10:10AM
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I have 2 Toto Drakes. One of them for five years. No problems here so far (never clogged, knock on wood) - I love mine and am getting ready to install another one in the 3rd bath.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2009 at 11:00AM
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I finally have one of my two TOTO Guinevere toilets installed and running. I bought the model that was just being discontinued with the 1.6 Gal water capacity. I think they are changing to 1.2 Gal capacity.
I am so-ooo thrilled with it. It flushes everything down in one flush, and after the tank fills...which is fast...the trickle sound is about 5 seconds...THAT'S IT!!!
It is a beautiful, classic look for a more traditional look, and love the raised seat and hidden bolts. Really easy to clean. I would buy same again...many times over.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2009 at 7:12PM
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Love my ultramaxs with gmax. All three bathrooms have them- two elongated and 1 round with sanagloss (powder room). I am not sure I see any difference with the sanagloss but I clean all of them regularly whether they need it or not. I think one is 7 years old, one 6 years and and one 4 years old. One has never clogged (kid's bath) and the other 2 have clogged maybe 2-3 times usually when several people are going one after another and not waiting for the tank to fill (I think). I am a happy customer and would never buy another brand of toilet.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2009 at 10:51PM
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Hoo boy- I was thinking the Guinevere sounded perfect. I'm looking for 2 toilets for very small bathrooms (single story home if it matters). I like the idea of skirted but can live without. Primary reasons for replacement is water consumption so we're looking at the 1.28 which makes the flush-factor especially worrisome. Also, my Mom is elderly so the higher height is for her - and we figure to stay here till we're old so we thought the height might make sense for us too. Is there a difference b/w "Universal" height and ADA? Finally - these toilets get heavy use -- so all the previously mentioned "delicate" issues are important. It seems the more I read, the more confused I get. Thanks all for your insights!

    Bookmark   June 23, 2009 at 5:13PM
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Hi everyone, I've installed several Toto toilets, use them exclusively in my home and would like to offer some advice that'll address the two core complaints mentioned in this thread: the dripping sound and the flush problems.
1) The dripping sound is due to the Toto's proprietary roughin adapter and how it mates to the floor's flange. One trick I've found is to use a hot-glue gun and glue a zip-tie to the toilet's exit port so any trickling water is gracefully conducted down the zip-tie and onto the adapter. You must be sure the zip-tie is secured onto the 'front' portion of the exit hole and extends 2 inches or so beyond the hole or it won't work.
2) Toto is famous for their flushing. They use a superior 'swiggle' in the exit tube to improve the vacuum. The ONLY cause for a poorly flushing Toto is a flawed installation of the 'waxie'. The 'waxie' is the wax seal used where the adapter mates to the floor flange. If it's moved, even slightly during installation (or even during the toilet's use if the floor bolts are not secure and the toilet slightly rocks), the waxie develops pin-holes that breaks the seal (and thus the vacuum). So, if you don't experience an impressive sucking effect each time you flush, it's the seal. Just replace it.

I hope this helps everyone to solve the distracting dripping sound common to Toto toilets, and explains the mystery of why some people love the flushing action of their Toto toilet, while others are forced to use a plunger.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2014 at 11:56AM
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I have the Toto Maris and a Toto Guinevere. The Toto Maris has been wholly unsatisfactory. From the beginning, this toilet was a disappointment. I got carried away by the "dual cyclone" and virtues of "Sanagloss" verbiage. This toilet creates the worst poo stripes I have ever seen, regardless of enthusiasm of flushing. And it plugs up. I thought by buying this toilet, I could virtually get rid of my plunger. Not so much. All family members have been schooled in the finer points of dual toilet flushing, and the apparently finicky requirements of this model of toilet. It was supposed to be easier, not more difficult. I called the Toto USA line and spoke to the technical department, and they told me that because the Maris has a low amount of water in the bowl, that a person using it for #2 should flush it while they were doing #2 (and again afterwards). Isn't that crazy? Aside from the fact you can't find that advice or requirement anywhere in their marketing material, it is almost physically impossible to do - very awkward to reach and flush while sitting facing forward. Especially if you are a small 9 year old! Stay away. An expensive experiment, but I will be replacing my Maris with something that works.

    Bookmark   November 8, 2014 at 11:50PM
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Babka NorCal 9b

The original post is from 2009 and 5 years old. If you have a concern about a different model, you will get more responses if you make a new post.


    Bookmark   November 9, 2014 at 12:30AM
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