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Q: Dear Ed: My husband and I are looking to change our present toilet. Since this is not an emergency, we have been doing some research, and the term "intelligent toilet" keeps popping up. I know they are electric, but what exactly is an intelligent toilet, and what do they do that is so different from standard toilets?
A: Intelligent toilets are often called "smart toilets." Just like smart phones, they offer a full line of electronic features not found in standard models.
Now, it's up to you to decide if the extra amenities are worth the price upgrade and extra install costs, since most require electrical power.
But, on the flip side, many smart toilets also include bidet-style washing features, and that basically gives you two plumbing fixtures in one. On top of sanitary washing features, intelligent toilets can include remote control operation, warm air dryers, heated seating and even nightlights to assist you in the bathroom.
Another new feature is touchless flushing, so smart toilets not only lend you a hand, they can even offer you hands-free options.
Master Contractor/Plumber Ed Del Grande is known internationally as the author of the book "Ed Del Grande's House Call," the host of TV and Internet shows, and a LEED green associate. Visit eddelgrande.com or write firstname.lastname@example.org