Water consumption and reduction is a hot topic in many parts of the world these days. Often times, simple methods can lead to major reductions in water consumption. Most people don’t realize that toilets alone can account for nearly 30% of a home’s indoor water consumption. In addition, a toilet made before 1994 can use over three times the water a new toilet uses. It is for those reasons that a toilet replacement makes perfect sense.
Calculating Payback: Toilets
A typical toilet replacement is a candidate for a do-it-yourself project, but to make things simple we will look at a toilet replacement that includes the standard labor charges associated with a plumber. Those charges can be between $250 and $500 on average for labor alone. The price for the toilet and other installation materials can vary greatly depending on quality, preference, and performance. A standard high-performance toilet that uses only 1.28 gallons per flush can be purchased for between $150 and $500 on average. This puts an average toilet replacement at $500 with both labor and materials.
The return on investment for a toilet replacement can be measured in the water and sewage savings that the new toilet creates. According to the EPA’s WaterSense program, a family of four that replaces older toilets with new WaterSense labeled toilets can expect a savings of up to $90 per year, and $2,000 over the lifetime of the toilets. Also, utility companies in many areas offer rebates that can lower the price of a WaterSense toilet. That puts the payback on an average toilet replacement at just over five years. Since the life of the toilet can be 20 years or more, this investment equates to significant savings with a reasonable payback period.