Have you been thinking about buying one of those toilet seat bidet conversion kits so yo can have a fancy multi function toilet? Think again before you decide to buy one and install it yourself. There is a very serious problem with the toilet seat bidet and without knowing this information, you and your family’s health is at serious risk. Take a look at my explanation about what can happen if you do not check the fine print or ask about it.
What is a bidet?
A bidet is a plumbing fixture that allows a short shower by washing the private areas. The bidet resembles a toilet but has the function of a bathroom sink. It has a faucet which provides hot and cold water. The water from the bidet flows through a nozzle or spout located below its flood level rim. A submerged water supply inlet into a plumbing fixture is very dangerous because it’s a potential cross-connection. This connection most likely will cross-contaminate with the water supply in an actual backflow occurrence. The toilet seat bidet kits that have become popular nowadays function like a bidet. However, they are still a toilet seat with a fancy modification that uses cold water only—the bidet water supply connects to the cold water supply line of the toilet supply tube. Now, remember I mentioned submerged inlet! The toilet seat bidet kit, when attached, sits below the toilet bowl flood level rim.
The danger posed
The toilet seat bidet nozzle mounted below the rim is dangerous because it could cause backflow into the home’s drinking water. For example, if a toilet would clog and the waste water rise up in the bowl submerging the nozzle while the toilet is in the filing cycle, there could be an actual backflow occurrence. Not only that, but the nozzle supplying water would become contaminated.
Even if there was no backflow when the toilet bowl backs up, a backflow still could happen down the road. The waste contamination inside the supply nozzle could spread in the potable water at any time when there would be any slight water pressure difference. For example, a water pressure difference would happen when you flush the toilet and wash your hands in the bathroom sink. Another good example is after flushing the toilet, the dishwasher or washing machine cycles on to rinse? These slight changes in water pressure can bring the nasty toilet bowl water into the potable supply from that contaminated bidet nozzle. The bidet nozzle will become polluted not only from a backup but also from its location of a dirty spot. Referring to the pictures above, you can see that the supply nozzle mounts below the rim!
This isn’t some far fetched “maybe this will happen” scenario. When’s the last time your toilet overflowed? You know you had a mess on your hands. A backflow situation could compound that by also contaminating your water and getting people really sick.
What should you do?
Any potential cross-connection requires an approved backflow preventer. The device for any bidet differs from a master backflow prevention device or assembly used to protect the public water main. For the private area showers, you’ll need an additional isolation backflow preventer at the toilet water connection to protect your house and the potable water main from becoming potentially contaminated.
If you have one of these toilet set bidets and you’re not sure if you have a backflow prevention device, or you know you need one, Schedule a Service Call with Vince.