When buying a toilet, a lot of things are taken into consideration. People make their selections based on features like water consumption, bowl shape, design, height, and even color. While those are solid factors that should guide a toilet-buying decision, none of them matters if the toilet doesn’t flush properly. Of all toilet features, the one that stays at number one is the flush performance.
Now, while manufacturers tend to sell their toilets as efficient, the only reliable way to confirm a toilet’s flushing performance is through a flush test. So, you might want to forget about those toilets with ads that show toilets flushing balloons and golf balls. We all know how unrealistic that is. The most reliable flush test a toilet can go through is the MaP test. Wonder what that is? We’ll get there in no time.
In this article, we will go over what the MaP toilet is all about, its importance, and how it works. We will also go over how it can be used when choosing a toilet so that you can get a toilet that eliminates waste properly. So, let’s get right into it.
What is the MaP Toilet Rating?
MaP stands for Maximum Performance. It is a scale used to rate toilet efficiency and flush performance based on controlled testing of waste and fluid.
A MaP search also uses other characteristics of a toilet model and gives people the information they need to make the right toilet decision. A specified amount of waste is put in a toilet bowl and flushed. Then, a score is assigned based on how well the toilet removes the waste.
The MaP toilet rating is a reliable way to determine the flush capacity of a toilet. While there are other toilet performance tests such as manufacturers tests, plumbing codes, and Consumer Reports, none comes close to MaP in terms of accuracy in results.
Other tests use different products for fecal simulation — some even go as far as using potatoes. But none of these products come close to the real world’s demands like MaP’s use of closely replicated waste. They even make their own soybean paste to represent fecal waste…
How Was the MaP Toilet Rating Developed?
Back in the 1990s, there were constant complaints about the new “ultra-low-flush toilets.” These newly-introduced toilets used 1.6 gallons of water per flush which is less than 50% of the water older toilets from the 1980s used. Imagine how much we’d be paying in water bills if we used 3.5 gallons of water — or more — for every flush!
Now, back to MaP! Most of the new 1.6 GPF toilets were not efficient as the manufacturers only modified the old 3.5 GPF models to use less water. The toilet bowls weren’t improved on, so they required multiple flushes to remove the waste. This poor flushing performance led to customer complaints, and the MaP test was developed in 2002-03 as a solution. Sponsored by members of the municipal water utility industry, the test was designed to identify how well toilet models performed through fecal stimulation, rank them based on their performance and publish their results. The published results will be made available to guide customers in their purchase decision.
How is the MaP Test Done?
As previously mentioned, the MaP uses soybean paste. It also incorporates toilet paper so as to provide an accurate simulation of real life. The soybean paste is dropped into a specific spot in the toilet bowl through an extruding device — just the way humans, you know. Four wads of toilet paper are then added to the toilet and flushed alongside the soybean paste.
When the material is flushed, they catch it with a colander under the toilet. This process is repeated until the toilet can no longer remove it in a single flush. Yes, it’s practically a test to fail. That’s the major reason the market is flooded with a lot of high-capacity toilet models these days.
Once the toilet reaches its limit, the material caught in the colander is weighed and used as a measure of what a toilet will consistently remove in a single flush.
What’s a Good MaP Score?
According to MaP standards, toilets that flush 500 grams or more provide a robust and efficient flush performance. So when you’re trying to choose a toilet, opt for one that flushes at least 500 grams of waste. However, the higher the score, the better. The MaP has performance tests that flush up to 1000 grams of waste.
You should note, however, that the actual efficiency of a toilet on the market might differ from the one that was tested, thanks to some manufacturers who make changes to their toilet models after they’ve passed the test. This is not very common, though, as the MaP performs field audits if:
- They find evidence that the toilet model originally tested according to MaP guidelines is not the one being sold on the market.
- There are complaints by consumers that suggest the performance of a tested toilet model is way below what was indicated in its MaP score.
- It has been over four years since the test was conducted.
So, not to worry! With this standard procedure, the odds of buying a toilet that doesn’t match its MaP rating are very slim.
How Do I Use the MaP Toilet Rating When Buying a Toilet?
That is pretty easy. Start by going to the MaP toilet search page and tick the box that says “MaP Tested.” If you’re looking for a toilet with a score within a specific range, go to the score column right under “Criteria/Ratings” and select the score range you want.
Then, check off your interested model and other features you want in a toilet and hit “search.” The result will be a list of all the MAP-tested toilets that match the features you selected. In the case where you don’t have a specific feature in mind, select “all” under each segment. You’ll be shown all the MAP-tested toilets in the database.
The MaP site contains everything you need to find a toilet that meets your needs. It might take some time, especially if you’re not sure of what you need. But rest assured, you have a reliable guide through your journey to finding the perfect toilet.
The MaP toilet rating has saved many and will continue to save many from making the mistake of buying a toilet with a low flushing capacity. It is a fact that the rating is the best judge of a good toilet. So, before buying that toilet, check its MaP score. Don’t get carried away by other features. Regardless of how sleek a toilet might seem or how efficient it is marketed to be, ensure you confirm its flushing performance. And always remember — if it has less than a MaP rating of 500, it’s not worth your penny!