Why Are Toilets Made of Porcelain?

If you have ever visited a shop that sells bathroom accessories, you have probably noticed that most toilets are made of porcelain. Toilets are made of porcelain or vitreous china for a reason. Alternative materials such as plastic and stainless steel have several drawbacks that give porcelain toilets an edge. But why are toilets made of porcelain?

Top toilet brands, including Toto, American Standard, Kohler, and Swiss Madison, have long embraced porcelain as their material of choice. Key ingredients in porcelain give the material its unique properties. The ingredients include powdered feldspar, kaolin, and silicate minerals. 

Why Are Toilets Made of Porcelain

Toilets are made of porcelain because of the following reasons:


Porcelain is relatively sturdy when compared to other substitute materials such as plastic. Toilets made out of vitreous china are less prone to breakages. Additionally, the commodes can bear the weight of heavy people without giving way or cracking. 

Porcelain has a rating of 7 on the Mohs scale. By comparison, diamond, the hardest known material, has a rating of 10 on the Mohs scale. Vitreous China toilets with just the right thickness can easily accommodate the heaviest individual in the world. 

Impervious to Water

Porcelain is the material of choice for top toilet brands because of its waterproof properties. Porcelain toilets ordinarily have a glaze that prevents water from infiltrating into the material. It is worth noting that porcelain’s nonporous nature also curtails bacterial propagation. 

Any bacteria present in a porcelain toilet bowl remains on the surface and does not penetrate the material. A simple wash with a disinfectant helps eliminate all bacteria present on the surface. By comparison, wooden toilet seats can absorb water. Besides, the porosity of wooden toilet seats creates ideal conditions for bacterial propagation. 

Easy to Clean

Toilets are made of porcelain because they are easy to clean. It is worth noting that vitreous china toilets have a fine glossy finish that prevents solid waste material from sticking on the surface. A single flush is enough to dislodge all dirt and solid waste particles lodged on the bowl’s interior.

However, a single flush might not do the trick if a porcelain toilet has not been used for a while. In such instances, you need to use a toilet cleaning detergent and a bristle brush to remove the most stubborn stains. Porcelain’s unique properties allow porcelain toilets to look as good as new after a thorough wash. 

By comparison, toilets made of substitute materials such as plastic and steel are relatively harder to clean. Steel has adhesive properties that make dirt and solid waste particles more difficult to remove. Furthermore, the frequent use of bristle brushes can leave dents that make the toilets to lose their sparkle over time. 

Porcelain toilet
Porcelain toilet


Toilets are made of porcelain because the material is considerably durable. Porcelain toilets typically last for many years without any significant change to their appearance. Porcelain’s durability is partly attributable to its anti-corrosion properties. Moreover, porcelain does not corrode when exposed to the ammonia contained in urine. By comparison, stainless steel toilets are subject to corrosion when exposed to ammonia for a protracted period. 

Porcelain toilets also last long because they can withstand high temperatures. The commodes are remarkably adaptable to regions with extremely high daily temperatures. By contrast, plastic toilets may undergo deformation when exposed to considerably high daily temperatures. 

Comfortable to Use in All Seasons

If you have ever touched a stainless steel object in winter, you know how cold it can feel. Porcelain is a material of choice for top toilet manufacturers because it does not feel too cold during cold seasons. You can sit on a porcelain toilet even during cold seasons without feeling uncomfortable. However, your porcelain toilet seat might feel a bit uncomfortable in minus zero temperatures. In such instances, you can consider buying a heated porcelain toilet.

Alternative materials such as steel are sensitive to low temperatures. Sitting on a stainless steel toilet when it is cold can be quite an unpleasant experience. Stainless steel toilets usually require plastic or wooden seats to make them usable in winter. 

Aesthetic Value 

Toilets are made of porcelain because of their unmatched aesthetic value. Porcelain toilets with a fine glossy finish have a sleek, stylish, and modern appearance. These toilets typically blend seamlessly into bathroom interiors based on their color. For instance, white porcelain toilets match with white bathroom interiors. 

Vitreous china toilets also complement your bathroom’s appearance because most bathroom accessories, including sinks and bathtubs, are made of the same material. Toilets made of vitreous chain material have an aesthetic advantage over those made of alternative materials. If you want to give your bathroom an elegant appearance, stainless steel toilets do not present you with many options. The toilets can only match with silver-colored bathroom interiors because they only come in silver. 

Easy and Inexpensive Molding Process 

Porcelain is the material of choice for most toilet manufacturers because of the easy and inexpensive manufacturing process. A porcelain toilet’s production process encompasses four intricate steps: molding, filling, glazing, and firing. The molding step allows manufacturers to develop diverse toilet designs

Filling involves pouring porcelain slurry into the mold. The slurry is a thick liquid that flows into every corner of the precast mold. After filling the mold, manufacturers ordinarily place it in a drying chamber for the porcelain to solidify. The drying chamber removes moisture from the slurry, enabling it to harden. 

Glazing involves removing the dry porcelain from the precast mold. The process typically involves removing all imperfections and overflow sections from the mold. Manufacturers then apply an enamel coat to give it a fine glossy finish. Firing entails placing the polished toilet in the kiln. The goal of firing is to remove any residual moisture and harden the enamel coat. Porcelain makes all these steps seamless, ensuring an efficient manufacturing process.

Wrap Up

Most toilet manufacturers choose porcelain because of the numerous advantages highlighted here. Alternative materials such as stainless steel and plastic lack an edge over porcelain. Overall, porcelain toilets have a sleek and stylish appearance. So, don’t hesitate to get yourself a porcelain toilet for your bathroom.

Smith Edwards

Smith Edwards is a licensed plumber and writer with over a decade of hands-on construction and home improvement experience and has been providing home improvement advice for over 12 years.

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