Home bidet attachments are smarter than ever, and a great way to save on toilet paper while reaching whole new levels of clean. But one thing that keeps people from upgrading to a bidet is that they aren’t sure if they can install it or not. Yes, at first glance it may look like a big project, but fear not. These bidet attachments are designed to be installed by homeowners with just a few simple steps, and we’ll go over everything you may need to get the project done fast.
Note: Most good bidet attachments are designed to fit on a variety of toilet shapes, but it’s always a good idea to make sure the bidet will fit your particular toilet bowl/seat design, especially if you have an oddly shaped potty. This guide is for bidets that are installed under your toilet seat — there are bidets that are handheld attachments resting by your toilet, but these are much easier to deal with, and can usually be installed without a guide.
The first step is to get everything you need for the project. Obviously, you should have your bidet out of the box and ready to go, and about an hour or so of time to work on the project (some bidets take significantly less time, and others may take more). Other important supplies include:
- A wrench or screwdriver set (this depends on how your toilet is attached)
- Cleaning rags, scrubber, and cleaner for in-depth cleaning
- Pipe sealant
- A power drill (likely optional)
Your toilet has a shutoff valve at the bottom, usually where the toilet connects to your larger plumbing system in the floor or wall. The first step is to turn this valve fully off to shut off water access to your toilet. This installation is best done with no water in your toilet, so after the valve is shut, flush the toilet a couple of times until it’s entirely empty. Now, you’re ready to begin.
At the back of your toilet seat, you’ll see it’s attached to the toilet bowl with two large bolts — many toilets require you to lift up protective flaps to expose these bolts. They can come in a variety of sizes, may be made out of metal or plastic, and generally vary based on the toilet seat. Using your wrench or screwdriver (whichever fits the bolts on your seat), unscrew the toilet seat and remove it entirely. For older toilets that may have experienced some corrosion, this can require extra work, a good pair of pliers, and a lubricating spray. However, it’s usually an easy task.
When the toilet seat is off, it’s time to clean! Clean your entire toilet thoroughly to prepare for the bidet. With the seat off and all hidden grime exposed, you may not get a chance to clean out your toilet like this again, so don’t be afraid to spend some extra time scrubbing and really get rid of any stubborn stains.
Your bidet is designed to fit against the toilet bowl, underneath your seat. Set up the bidet where your toilet bolts were, over the holes in the bowl. Many bidets will have adjustments you can make to help it line up correctly with your toilet bowl so you can access both holes. Make sure the bidet is well centered in the toilet bowl and pushed back as far as it can go.
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In some cases, bidets have mounting plates, which turns this into a two-step process. First, install the mounting plate over your bolt holes, then attach the rest of the bidet with the accompanying new bolts — this happens more frequently for bidets that replace your toilet seat entirely instead of sitting underneath it.
If your bidet doesn’t replace your toilet seat entirely, it’s time to put your toilet seat back on. Position the toilet seat above your bidet over the same bolt holes, and screw it back in. Some bidets may offer new bolts and washers to help with this, while some may have you use your original bolts. In rarer cases, the original bolts won’t be long enough to deal with both the seat and bidet: That means it’s time to head to the hardware store and look for longer toilet seat bolts that can handle the new situation.
Your toilet should also have a water supply hose connection from the base of your tank to your home’s water supply. With the water turned off and drained, this hose is safe to remove from your toilet, so unscrew and detach it. Again, older toilets may require some lubricant and effort at this point.
Your bidet should have a t-valve, a small attachment that you can now screw on to the base of the tank. This t-valve simply enables the water supply line to supply water to the bidet as well as the toilet tank. A dab of pipe sealant at this point can help if the valve doesn’t seem to be attached very well. You can also use plumbers tape or plumbers putty if you need to create a better seal.
Now, attach the water supply line to the bottom of the t-valve, and your new bidet water line to the side of the t-valve. Again, pipe sealant may help here. When finished, attach the other end of your bidet water line to the bidet itself so that everything is now connected. Make any necessary adjustments for the fit and positioning of the bidet at this time.
Some bidets use heated water. If you don’t want to be splashed with cold water, you can opt for a heated version. However, this often requires an additional attachment where you hook up a hot water line to the hot water supply at your sink.
If your sink is right next to your toilet, this is a relatively easy task. You will need to drill a small hole in the corner of your sink cabinet to route the hot water line through. Then follow the same procedures for turning off water and attaching the necessary valves for adding hot water (a flashlight for under-sink work is helpful here).
If your sink is on an opposite wall or in a separate room altogether, attaching a hot water line becomes more complicated. Routing the line under the floor or through the wall is usually the best option. However, at this point we suggest getting the advice of a professional plumber and maybe have them complete the project, unless you already have some plumbing experience of your own.
Now, turn your water shutoff valve back on, and make sure there are no leaks anywhere in the system. If everything looks good, start testing the bidet to make sure it’s working properly. Yes, it will shoot out water, so you may want a bucket handy to catch it. Finding just the right way to use your new bidet may take a little practice and some minor adjustments along the way, but now you’re ready.
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