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Plumbing - Bidets

What are bidets?

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A bidet is a sit down wash station to be used after using the toilet. It used to be considered a luxury item that you are starting to see in more and more homes because of its convenience, water conservation and gentle, hygienic method of cleansing. It can also be used to wash other body parts, like the feet.

The first written recording of the use of a bidet was in 1710. By 1900, thanks to improvements in plumbing, the bidet moved from the bedroom into the bathroom. In 1960 the electronic bidet, an attachment that connects onto an existing toilet was introduced, offering this convenience to bathrooms without the room for two separate fixtures. In 1980 the first "paperless toilet" was launched in Japan, a combination toilet and bidet which also dries the user after washing.

Considerations:

Bidets are usually placed near the toilet and only require about nine feet of space. Installation is simple. The bidet is roughed in like a toilet, the faucet is installed and then the lines are connected.

Options:

Bidets are made in several different designs. They may have one tap which pours fresh water, usually warm into a china basin either from a vertical spray in the center of the bowl, an integral filter or a special spout that delivers a horizontal stream. The basin can be plugged and filled if necessary, or the water can be allowed to drain away. Other bidets have a nozzle which propels water up into the air. Some bidets have 2 nozzles-one longer nozzle for women and one shorter for men and women.

Some bidets have a warming feature after each use. Some people use toilet paper after using the toilet followed by use of the bidet. Some use the bidet as a cleaning method rather than the use of toilet paper.

Toilet seat bidet attachments are also becoming increasingly popular with the aging community. Many companies make bidet seat attachments that include remote controls to activate the water jets and air dryer. These conveniently placed remote controls may particularly benefit any individual with limited mobility.

One company offers a space saving toilet and bidet combination all in one. It has a more contemporary look, but offers a great deal of convenience.

Design Options:

Often bidets have coordinating toilets, but that is not always the case. Be sure to check for a coordinating pair before making your selection.

Maintenance:

To clean a bidet, use methods similar to the toilet:

First, put on rubber gloves and rinse the bidet to wet the sides of the bowl. Then, apply a generous amount of your choice of cleaner not only to the water, but to the sides of the bowl. Let the cleaner stand to give it time to kill germs and bacteria. If the bidet has a ring, use a scrub brush to remove the ring. Flush the bidet to rinse the cleaner. Spray the rim with a disinfectant and then wipe down the seat and the rim. Allow the seat to dry before using the bidet. If you have pets that like to drink out of the toilet, to be on the safe side, flush the bidet an additional time to rinse any remaining cleaner from the bowl.