What is a Close Coupled Toilet

There are several reasons why you might be looking for a new toilet. You might be renovating an existing bathroom, building a new home, or replacing your current toilet seat. This article will look at what a close-coupled toilet is, its different types, and its benefits. 

A close-coupled toilet is one where the cistern and the toilet bowl are closely coupled together instead of traditional toilets where a flush pipe separates them. Close-coupled toilets are more modern and have an ultra-contemporary look than conventional toilets. 

When choosing a toilet seat for your bathroom, you can choose from three types, i.e., close coupled, back to wall, and wall hung. Your choice will depend on your bathroom style and your plumbing design. Let’s look at how a close-coupled toilet can be a good fit for your needs. 

back to wall close coupled toilet
Image from Tile Africa

Pros and Cons of a Close Coupled Toilet 

You’ll definitely do a pros vs. cons analysis to ensure you’re making a sound investment whenever you’re looking to buy something. The benefits actually outweigh the drawbacks in case of close-coupled toilets. 


  • 3 – 6 liter capacity flush tanks 
  • Easy to install 
  • Cost-effective 
  • A contemporary and minimalist look
  • Shorter sizes available for smaller bathrooms
  • Immune to water damage 
  • Long-lasting and durable 


  • Can crack or chip over time 
  • It doesn’t conceal plumbing as well as a WC unit 

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Close Coupled Toilet

You need to consider a few things when you’re out to buy a close-coupled toilet. Let’s look at these in detail: 

Wood vs. Soft Toilet Seat


You’ll get the option to choose between a soft seat that makes very little noise when you close it and wooden ones that add a traditional appeal to the toilet. If you’re looking at reducing noise, you should go for a soft seat. 

However, if a more traditional look and feel is your idea for the overall theme of the bathroom, go for the wooden option. 


You have the option to choose between a rimmed or a rimless design. We’d suggest a rimless design as it’s much more hygienic. The rim can accumulate bacteria. A rimless design will have a pump shoot water from the back to clean the entire pan efficiently. 


We’re seeing smaller and smaller bathroom designs that focus on space-saving. These come as small as 600 mm deep and can be an excellent fit for a compact space. You can go for a smaller projection size for the toilet. 


This depends on the people who will be using the toilet. If users have mobility issues, you need to choose a higher option. Having a better-heightened toilet will ensure less bending and strain on the knees. You can add bar rails as well for added stability. 

a hand push down one of the dual flush button on toilet


There are different options, but the best one is with dual flush systems. These are designed to let you choose a different trigger for liquid waste and solid waste. This is a great option to help you conserve water. 

What Are Other Types of Toilets? 

We’ve discussed close coupled toilets and what specific features you need to look for. Let’s briefly see the other three options you can explore if this doesn’t suit your needs. 

low-level toilet
Image from Lathom heating & plumbing

Low-Level Toilet 

The cistern is located shortly above the pan on the wall. A short water pipe separates the cistern and the pan. The flush is a lever handle on the cistern that can be pushed down. 

Back to Wall Toilet

This toilet is designed to conceal the cistern and the water pipes. These are concealed behind a wall or a panel. The toilet is fixed in front on the floor. The flush system can be accepted from the IPS panel to activate the concealed cistern. 

wall-hung toilet

Wall Hung Toilet 

In this case, the toilet is visible above the floor. It is fixed with metal brackets with the panel or wall behind. The same wall conceals the cistern and the waste pipes. This gives the toilet a very modern and elevated look. 

How to Install a Close Coupled Toilet? 

Assuming you’ve made your decision and have purchased a close-coupled toilet. Here are steps you can take to install your brand new toilet: 

Step 1: Stop the water supply. 

Replacing an existing toilet or installing a new one will require you to stop the water supply. It’s best to turn off the supply at the stopcock. 

Step 2 – Assemble the unit. 

Use the instruction manual to start assembling the unit for installation. Insert the two fixing bolts to the bottom of the cistern. Leave these bolts unconnected. Look at the bottom of the flush and take off the bottom fixing nut and two washers. Insert these into the cistern as well. 

Step 3 – Finish cistern assembly 

Take your nuts and washers off the bottom of the cistern, and then pop the inlet valve into the cistern. Make sure you replace and tighten the nuts and bolts after this is done. 

Step 4: Assemble everything together. 

It’s time to put the whole thing together by threading your stuck-out bolts into the holes present on the pan. Use the fixing bolts and washers on either side of the unit to secure everything. 

Step 5 – Connect the pan. 

It’s time to connect the pan of the toilet to the waste pipe. Make sure the pipe connector fits properly. Insert the pipe on the inlet in the wall and then slide the toilet to the wall to fix it. 

Step 6 – Mark holes around the toilet 

Once the toilet is in place, take a marker or pencil and mark the holes around the toilet’s base. Take a measuring tape, measure the toilet’s width, and mark the holes for the cistern on the wall as well. 

Step 7: Secure the toilet in place. 

Take the toilet away from the wall and drill in your metal brackets where you made the marks. Once you have everything screwed in, put the unit back in place and secure everything in place neatly. 

main water supply valve
Image from Central York Corporation

Step 8 – Turn on the water supply

Add some tape to the cold water supply inlet and ensure no leaks in the pipe. Turn the water on at the source and look around at the toilet to ensure there are no leaks. 

Step 9: Locate the flush. 

Once this is done, it’s time to add the flush mechanism to the holes on the cistern by adding the rods at a parallel angle. Place the lid back on and test the flush several times to ensure it’s working fine. You may need to cut the length of the rods if they’re too long. 

Step 10: Seal with a sealant. 

Check whether the entire system is installed on the level. If yes, it’s time to use a sealant to seal the whole system from the cistern to the edges of the pan on the floor. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

close-coupled toilet
Image from Davies Ltd

1. Are close coupled toilets better than other types? 

Close-coupled toilets help save space and are more modern than other options. It also allows for two separate flush systems to save water. However, the kind of toilet you choose depends on your needs and your bathroom style. 

     2. What is a cistern? 

A cistern is a water tank attached to a toilet system. It collects water for when the toilet is flushed. It is connected to a water source at all times. Cisterns can either be visible or concealed behind a wall or panel, depending on your toilet system. 

back-to-wall toilet
Image from Creative Bathrooms & Interiors

      3. Where is the cistern in a back-to-wall toilet? 

The cistern on a back-to-wall toilet is at the rear of the toilet wall. This is probably the most common type of toilet installed in most homes and commercial areas. 

Final Thoughts 

You can choose from a variety depending on your needs and the style of the toilet. Close-coupled toilets are great with their two flush systems for saving water and spacing. They come in different shapes and sizes.

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