For cleaning oneself in the bathroom without resorting to the shower, bathtub, or cleaning wipes, nothing compares to a bidet. A common feature in bathrooms in Europe, South America, and some Asian countries, the bidet is slowly catching on in North American bathrooms.
Essentially, a bidet is a hybrid bathing fixture for your private parts. While a bidet is not a toilet, sink, or bathtub, it is a fixture all its own that shares characteristics of those other bathroom components.
When you install a bidet in your bathroom, you gain many benefits, hygienically and environmentally. A bidet lets you clean up more thoroughly than with toilet paper, letting you use little or no toilet paper. A bidet saves a considerable amount of water over bathing or showering, and it keeps you cleaner for a longer period.
While bidet installation may seem intimidating, it is fairly straightforward. As long as you have a hot and cold water supply and a drainage point, the lightweight bidet is easy to handle and installs much like the lower half of a toilet with the tank removed. For the easiest type of bidet installation, purchase that type that has a horizontal drain that enters the wall rather than the floor.
Equipment / Tools
- Eye protection
- Tape measure
- Cordless drill
- Crescent wrench
- Drill bits
- Laser level (optional)
- 2 3/8-inch shut-off valves
- 2 Braided water connectors
- Silicone sealant
Choose Where to Place the Bidet
Typically, the bidet is located adjacent to the toilet, on either available side. While bidet sizes vary, generally allow a bidet footprint that is 18 inches away from the wall and about 16 inches side-to-side. In addition, provide at least 8 inches of clearance on both sides of the bidet.
Rough-In the Water Supply Lines and Drainage
Installing water supply lines on the bidet is similar to installing hot and cold water lines to a bathroom sink. The difference is that, for the bidet, the lines should be 6 1/2 inches above the floor or per the manufacturer's specifications.
Install 3/8-inch shut-off valves. Install a drain outlet at the point indicated by the bidet instructions' rough-in guide or paper template.
Install the Faucet and Drain
On the bidet fixture, install the bidet faucet and drain. Generally, these items are included with the bidet. Be sure to use the rubber washers, and do not over-tighten.
Mark the Position of the Bidet
Position the bidet on the desired spot on the bathroom floor. With the pencil, mark around the base of the bidet and in the mounting holes. Mark these spots very clearly.
Drill the Mounting Holes
Use the drill and a 3/16-inch bit to drill two holes at the spots indicated earlier. Keep the drill perfectly vertical. A laser level's plumb feature is a good way to make sure that your drill is where it should be.
If the floor is concrete and/or has ceramic tile, a hammer drill and special tile bit will be needed, along with sleeve anchors.
Apply the Sealant
Remove the bidet and set it on its side. Apply the silicone sealant around the base. Position the bidet over the floor bolts and rest the bidet on the floor. If any sealant squeezes out from the base, wipe it away with a finger moistened with water.
Bolt Down the Bidet
With the wrench, secure the bidet to the floor with the included washers and nuts. As with installing a toilet, be very careful not to over-tighten or you risk cracking the delicate porcelain base of the bidet. Install the plastic caps over the bolts.
Connect the Water
Connect the water supply lines to the bidet by hand. Make sure they're tight. Turn on the water and check for leaks.
Test the Bidet
Test the bidet controls on top of the fixture to make sure that each one works properly.
- For plumbing rough-in in the wall, it may be necessary to call a plumber.
- The floor should be solid to hold the floor bolts. If the floor is rotted or damaged in any way, it may be necessary to replace parts of the floor.
- If you do not already have water supply lines and drainage installed in the wall for the bidet, you may wish to place the bidet on the side of the toilet that is closest to the sink.
- If the bidet has electric controls, situate the bidet near a GFCI outlet.
If this installation seems too daunting, there are bidet seats that can be installed on a standard toilet. They don't require extra space in the bathroom and are more DYI friendly.