Toilets found in American households generally divide into these two major categories: one piece vs two piece toilet.
There is even a debate between the two styles of toilet. Many plumbers praise the one piece toilet and bash the other type. Are they right?
Keep on reading to find out what each type of toilet is and what their pros and cons are. At the end of this post, you should be able to decide which type of toilet suits you better.
Your decision will depend on multiple factors, such as price, desired toilet height, and aesthetic requirements.
What are the components of a toilet?
In order to understand the difference between the two types, we need to mention the main components of a toilet:
It catches the waste and send it to the sewer. The shape of the bowl can make the toilet an elongated or a round type one.
This part provides lift up from the ground and is located under the toilet bowl. The pedestal ensures the toilet has the optimal height.
The tank stores water for flushing and its upper location gives the bowl pressure to flush the waste away.
What is one-piece toilet?
A one-piece toilet is one where the toilet and tank are fused together without any joints. It is also known as single piece toilet. You can recognize a one-piece toilet by the fact that there is no seam visible between the toilet tank and the bowl.
What is two-piece toilet?
Two-piece toilets have separated toilet bowl and tank. The two components are joined using fittings. This type of toilet is also called a coupled toilet.
Which one is better?
One-piece toilets have a better reputation due to their sleeker design and faster installation. They are definitely more fashionable.
However, you shouldn’t make a decision based on consumer trends only. Research the pros and cons of each type of toilet and choose the one that suits you best! 
Benefits of one-piece toilet
The benefits of one-piece toilets include:
- Easier installation
The one-piece toilet definitely wins the battle in terms of installation. They are heavier to move around, but the installation is easier. There is no hassle connecting the tank and the bowl.
However, due to the large size and weight of the one-piece toilet you might need help from another person.
- Easier cleaning
The lack of a gap between the tank and bowl is a huge advantage. That spot is a paradise for bacteria and germs. The place is difficult to reach and clean and is a nuisance to everyone.
In order to clean the place perfectly you might need to remove the tank. And with that comes the problem of installing it back properly so the toilet doesn’t leak.
- Less maintenance
Single piece toilets are virtually one big piece of bathroom fixture. There are no joining parts to maintain or repair. So, a one-piece toilet is tougher, more durable, and more reliable.
The chance of dealing with leaks is lower in one-piece toilets as there is no fitting that could develop cracks. Any engineer will tell you that fewer parts translate into fewer chances of dealing with a malfunction.
- Taking up less space
Due to the tank and bowl being molded together, one-piece toilets take up a little less space. They are more suitable for small bathrooms. Some one-piece toilets can be wall-mounted, which further saves space.
- Increased comfort
The majority of one-piece toilets comply with comfort height guidelines. The height of the bowl is 17 inches instead of 15. However, you can also find them at 15 inches if you prefer standard height.
- Better aesthetics
Both types of toilets are available in attractive designs, but one-piece toilets are preferred by consumers. The seamless design with no gap or joint is definitely a winner. If you want to create a stylish look for your bathroom, you will probably opt for a one-piece toilet.
Benefits of two-piece toilet
Two-piece toilets have lost some of their popularity in the last years. However, they have strong benefits that can make them winners in the one-piece vs. two-piece toilet debate:
A two-piece toilet weighs less than its one-piece counterpart; an average 55 pounds compared to 88. There is less ceramic in a two-piece toilet, which makes it lighter.
- Easier to ship
Less weight means the two-piece toilet is easier and cheaper to ship. It is also less bulky because the two pieces packed together take up less space than a complete one-piece toilet.
Even if two-piece toilets have extra fittings, their price is lower. The smaller weight and the easier transport definitely have an impact on the price paid by consumers.
- Easy installation
Earlier we said that the one-piece toilet is easier to install. However, the two-piece version is also easy to install in a different way. Being less bulky makes it easier to maneuver. Putting a two-piece toilet in its right place is simpler.
If there is a downside, that must be the extra fittings that will make the installation a bit longer.
What about the cons?
Every product comes with its advantages and downsides. When it comes to one-piece vs. two-piece toilet, each of the two options has some cons.
- One-piece toilet cons
One-piece toilets are heavier compared to coupled toilets; about 50% more heavy.
The extra weight makes them more expensive and more difficult to ship.
The higher price is also caused by the higher manufacturing costs. A one-piece toilet requires assembling multiple elements into one, which takes skill. Obtaining a seamless design is a complex process and uses a greater number of resources.
Some experts claim that the price of one-piece toilets could drop in the future if 3D printers will be used for manufacturing.
There are fewer options on the market, which can be both an advantage and a disadvantage. Some people find it easier to make a decision when there are fewer options available.
There is one more drawback to consider if you are tempted to buy a one-piece toilet. If you break either part of a one-piece toilet, you will need to replace the entire toilet. For the coupled toilet, you will only need to replace half of the toilet.
- Two-piece toilet cons
Many users avoid this type of toilet because it is more difficult to clean. The joining area between the bowl and the tank attracts germs and bacteria. For those who are very conscious about cleaning, a two-piece toilet will be a constant source of worries. You will never be 100% sure your toilet is clean.
Coupled toilets are also more likely to break and leak. The first part to give up is the rubber seal of the water tank. Once it starts to deteriorate, you will be dealing with leaks. So, a two-piece toilet requires additional maintenance.
Their installation is a bit longer and they do not provide the same modern look as one-piece versions.
One-piece vs. two-piece toilet – quick comparison
Both types of toilets have the same level of performance. There is no significant difference in terms of functionality between one-pieced and two-piece toilets.
In terms of flushing power and efficiency, again, there I no difference between the two types of toilets. The amount of water flushed depends on the flushing technology. Regardless of the type of toilet you choose, you can opt for a low-flow toilet. It is possible to have a clean toilet with as little as one gallon of water per flush.
As a result, the main factors when making a decision remain personal preferences and your bathroom remodeling budget.
Most two-piece toilets cost between $300 and $500, while a high-end one-piece toilet can cost as much as $1000. If your budget is limited, you will be much inclined to purchase a two-piece toilet.
Are you looking for a durable fixture with a contemporary look and easy to clean? Then it is worth paying the extra money on a one-piece toilet.
Homeowners on a budget and with less pretentions may opt for a traditional two-piece toilet. Most people are familiar with this type of toilet. According to some consumer reports, about 80% of toilets sold are two-piece toilets.
Both types of designs have their benefits and drawbacks. In terms of performance, they are both the same.
Who wins the one-piece vs. two-piece toilet battle? It doesn’t matter, as long as you have a toilet that works properly. Both models do the same thing: flush away waste so we live comfortable and healthy lives.