So you're ready to get a bidet after reading about all of the benefits from owning one. What are the different kinds of bidets out there, and which one is the best fit for you? Read on to find out.
Ceramic (Stand-Alone) bidets These are traditional bidets that are a separate fixture from the toilet. They're mounted on a wall and some have adjustable temperatures. There are no benefits to this type of bidet in the modern age. They take up a lot of room, and are not great for smaller bathrooms. They need special plumbing as well. It can be messier to use them because you would have to get up from the toilet and move over to the stand alone bidet, all the while still being dirty in the rear area. These have been mostly replaced by more modern bidet technology, such as the subsequent ones on this list.
Handheld Bidet Sprayer These kinds of bidets are common in Asia and Islamic countries. Think of it as a mini kitchen faucet sprayer for your private area. It's a sprayer that's attached to a hose, and usually diverts water from your toilet with a T-valve to use as a spray. The pressure that comes out would depend on how far you depress the lever. The advantage for these is that it's easier to direct the flow to exactly the spot you want. But, you'll have to use your hand to direct the flow and it could be awkward to use your hand to reach around and spray your bum area. Also, most of these only have a cold water option, meaning you're in for quite a shock in the winter time.
Bidet Attachments These are commonly found inexpensive bidet options found in the American household. They are non electric and some models are able to have heated water spray as well as cold water. They are generally easy to install, although the ones that need both a hot and cold water connection are a tad more difficult to install, as you'll need to connect the hot water connection, but the hot water connection is usually in the sink area, and not the toilet area. They are installed right underneath your existing toilet seat. The main advantage of the bidet attachment is that it virtually fits all toilets, and is inexpensive compared to other bidet options. The disadvantage is that it is very lacking in features compared to an electric bidet. Other than spraying, and having an adjustable pressure and temperature for the spray, it doesn't have any other features such as a heated seat, heated air dry, adjustable nozzle positions, etc.
Travel or portable bidets If you can't stand using toilet paper outside, you can bring along a travel bidet. It's pocket sized, and it's usually a squeezable plastic bottle with a bidet attachment sprayer at the end. You can fill them up with warm water for the best experience. It might be hard for some to squeeze hard enough to get a satisfactory pressure. There are more fancy portable electric bidets that automatically sprays water without you needing to squeeze anything, but these are generally much more expensive and hold approximately 150 - 200 mL of water, meaning that you might run out of water before you finish cleaning. There are also bidet attachments that you can screw onto your typical drink bottle, and are the most portable of all portable bidets, which makes it great for camping or hiking.
Electric Bidets These are also known as "washlets" and "bidet seats". These are add-ons for your existing toilet. All you need to do is buy the right one for the size of your toilet and replace your existing plastic toilet seat with the electric bidet. You'll also need an electrical outlet nearby. The water source is diverted with a T-valve from the cold water intake leading to the toilet water tank. The installation of these bidets is generally fairly easy and doable by most people without the need of a plumber or an electrician. This is the most feature rich bidet available, and has all the features you'll need to have a life changing experience in the bathroom, such as heated seat, heated water, heated air dry, adjustable water temperature and pressure, air deodorizer, night light, remote control, auto cycle function, self cleaning function, etc. Some electric bidets have the buttons on an attached side console panel, while others have the buttons on a separate remote control. Because these bidets have so many features, they are the most expensive out of the different types of bidets. However, the price range for electric bidets can be very large, depending on the featureset of the bidet, so while some bidets can cost thousands of dollars, other intro level bidets can be had for around $300. Choosing an electric bidet can be confusing due to the seemingly endless list of features, so for a guide on all the features and which ones you definitely need vs which ones are a nice-to-have but not a necessity, please click here!