Water closet and lavatory are often used interchangeably but have different meanings. Water closets are toilets in separate rooms with doors, while lavatories are sinks or washbasins.
While it may seem insignificant, understanding the distinction between these two often used phrases can benefit interior designers, architects, and builders.
Professionals may better connect with clients and ensure accurate designs and planning by knowing the right vocabulary. Knowing the differences between Water Closet vs Lavatory can also benefit homeowners who are remodeling their bathrooms or want to improve their bathroom language.
Difference Between Water closet And lavatory
Many phrases describe bathroom fixtures and characteristics, making bathroom jargon complex. Water closet and a lavatory are typical. Many people use these terms interchangeably, although they mean different things.
Water closets have toilets, while lavatories are sinks for hand and face washing. Understanding the difference between these two terms may assist you choose bathroom fixtures and features.
Water closet: private toilet
The bathroom has several perplexing terms. You may misunderstand “water closet.” Water closets are separate toilets. This toilet is common in older homes and fancy hotels. The term “water closet” comes from these toilets’ cistern-flushing origins.
Water closets are used internationally but less in the US. A “lavatory,” however, is a washbasin or basin for handwashing or other personal hygiene tasks. In the US, this term is often used interchangeably with “sink.” When you hear “water closet,” it means a private toilet, while “lavatory” means a washbasin.
Lavatory: sink area
Common bathroom words are “water closet” and “lavatory.” The former is a toilet chamber, the latter a washbasin. Public restrooms offer handwashing, teeth brushing, and grooming.
Mirrors, hand dryers, and sinks are common. Lavatories provide a clean, accessible location to change in public restrooms, although they are not as private as water closets. Take advantage of public restrooms next time!
Definition of loo
· Understanding water closet and lavatory is key to bathroom language.
· Both phrases pertain to bathroom fixtures but have different uses.
· A lavatory is a sink for hand, face and body washing, while a water closet is a small room with a toilet.
· The water closet is where you use the toilet and the lavatory is where you wash up.
· A lavatory can also be a public restroom or locker area with multiple sinks.
· These nuances help you understand bathroom lingo and choose fittings.
Toilet vs. Washbasin
Water closets and lavatories might be perplexing bathroom terms. A water closet, or WC, usually simply has a toilet, whereas a lavatory, or sink, is for handwashing and other grooming. Both are essential bathroom fixtures, but they have different functions.
A toilet, or water closet, disposes of human waste and is usually in a separate room for privacy. Handwashing, brushing teeth and other personal grooming are done in the washbasin.
It may seem simple, but understanding the terminology when building or renovating a bathroom ensures that the right fixtures are fitted in the right places.
Water usage differences
The difference between a water closet and a lavatory is crucial to bathroom terminology. One major difference is water use. A water closet, or toilet, flushes waste into a sewer or septic system.
Toilets can flush waste using gravity or pressure, depending on the kind. However, a lavatory (washbasin) uses water for handwashing and hygiene.
· Lavatories use less water than water closets, depending on the faucet and how long they are run.
· The EPA estimates that a regular lavatory tap consumes 2 gallons per minute and a water closet uses 1.6 gallons every flush.
· Understanding these water use variances will help you choose bathroom fixtures and conserve water.
Cultural and historical relevance
Water closet vs lavatory is a cultural and historical distinction. Water closets, or toilets, were invented in the mid-19th century and became popular in aristocratic families. Indoor plumbing was a luxury, and water closets were a sign of wealth and rank.
Water closets were not initially embraced by society. It was considered filthy and disease-prone. A lavatory, or washbasin, has been a household staple for ages. The Latin verb lavare means to wash, therefore lavatory.
Clean washing water was a luxury, and a lavatory in one’s home was a sign of wealth and prestige. Water closets and lavatories are now ubiquitous and no longer culturally significant.
Common toilet types
Understanding bathroom fixture kinds is crucial. Understanding the difference between a water closet and a lavatory can be helpful. Toilets—water closets—are the most frequent bathroom fixture in houses and public accommodations.
Gravity-fed, pressure-assisted, and dual-flush toilets are available. Pressure-assisted toilets use pressurized air to flush waste, while gravity-fed toilets employ water weight.
Dual-flush toilets conserve water by flushing liquid and solid waste separately. Lavatories are sinks or washbasins. There are pedestals, console, drop-in, and undermount lavatories.
Console lavatories have legs or brackets, while pedestal lavatory have a single column. Undermount lavatories are positioned underneath the countertop for a sleek, seamless effect, while drop-in lavatory rests on top.
Common sink types
· Understanding bathroom fixture nomenclature and types is crucial.
· Sinks are essential bathroom fixtures. Water closets and lavatories are common sinks.
· Water closets, commonly known as toilets, dispose of bodily waste.
· However, a lavatory is a washbasin for handwashing, tooth brushing and other personal hygiene duties.
· Lavatories have pedestals, undermount, vessel, and other sinks.
· Each washbasin type has pros and cons, so it’s vital to pick one that suits your needs.
Designing your bathroom requires choosing the appropriate fixtures. Water closet vs lavatory is an important point to consider. A water closet, or toilet, disposes of human waste.
However, a lavatory, or washbasin, is used for handwashing and other personal hygiene activities. When picking bathroom fixtures, consider space and usefulness.
To maximize space in a small bathroom, consider a compact water closet and corner lavatory. A modern lavatory for a modern bathroom design may also be appropriate. Take time to choose bathroom fixtures to create a functional and beautiful place that fulfils your needs and represents your taste.
When building or upgrading a bathroom, knowing the difference between a water closet and lavatory can help. Knowing what each phrase implies and its context might assist you choose fixtures and accessories.
Whether you want a traditional water closet or a modern lavatory, find one that suits your taste and demands. With this knowledge, you can confidently design a functional and appealing bathroom.