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Toilet: Interesting Facts About John

Updated on September 27, 2013

Mr. John

Everyone has surely used one of these before and most people have at least one in their home. A toilet is a plumbing fixture connected to a waste pipe. It usually consists of a seat in the shape of a bowl with a hinged cover. The back of the toilet is filled with water and an intricate mechanism that allows water to flush out waste into a sewer once the handle in pressed. The toilet is also equipped with a removable lid which allows access for maintenance and repair.


Green Toilets

There is a tremendous amount of water used for flushing toilets and efforts have been made to make them more environmentally friendly. In 1992 Congress passed The Energy Policy Act, which mandated that by 1994 all newly manufactured toilets should hold no more than 6 gallons. Before this act was passed toilets in the United States used an average of 13 gallons per flush. As of March 1st, 2011 the U.S. population was estimated at 312,112,000 people. If all these people flushed a toilet 3 times a day that would equal to 936,336,000 gallons. To give you an idea of how much that is, an Olympic sized swimming pool holds about 650,000 gallons of water. The law combined with innovation has had a dramatic positive effect on our environment.


Up, Up, Up and Away!

Toilets are not just for home use. You can find them thousands of feet up in the air on passenger airplanes where they are commonly called lavatories. Toilets in airplanes operate differently from the ones made for home use. The bowl in the sky uses a vacuum suction when flushed instead of relying on gravity. Also, they differ in terms of how the waste is removed. At home waste is automatically sent to the sewer, on an airline it is sent to a holding tank. Lavatories are also more enviornmentally friendly, using only about a half of a gallon when flushed.

This photo was taken by me at The Kentucky Derby in 2008.
This photo was taken by me at The Kentucky Derby in 2008. | Source

Portable Toilets

Another form of toilets are portable ones which are most commonly known as Port-O-Pots, Johnny-On-The-Spot or Port-O-Johns. They are usually made out of plastic and are equipped with toilet paper and hand sanitizer. Portable toilets are a huge business so there are numerous specialized companies that lease them to people and organizations when there are a lack of restroom facilities. Some common places where you might find these toilets are concerts, festivals and construction sites. There is no flushing mechanism in portable toilets, just a holding tank filled with water and an air vent.


There is a common prank that is associated with portable toilets. This prank is accomplished by first waiting for an unsuspecting victim to enter. Then someone waits about 20 seconds until they think the door is locked and the victim is settled in. Next, one or two people run toward the portable toilet and slam into it, knocking it over. The result is an angry victim that no one wants anywhere near them.


Who Arted?

Some people express their artistic side on canvas and others express it on toilets. Those plain white toilets can be turned into a masterpiece with a little creativity. Some are still used for their original purpose and others are not used as toilets at all. For example, they can be turned into an outdoor planter or an aquarium.



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    • crazyhorsesghost profile image

      Thomas Byers 5 years ago from East Coast , United States

      Very interesting hub with lots of fun facts I did not know. I really liked the photos. Thanks for a wonderful experience.

    • mecheshier profile image

      mecheshier 5 years ago

      Love this Hub. Great angle a variety of topics. Thank you. Voted up for interesting.

    • Millionaire Tips profile image

      Shasta Matova 5 years ago from USA

      Who Arted indeed! Lots of great information about the toilet here, Matt. I wouldn't have thought of it as a hub topic personally.

    • profile image

      Matt Wells 6 years ago

      Thanks! My friend busted out laughing multiple times last night thinking about my childish art joke!

    • Simone Smith profile image

      Simone Haruko Smith 6 years ago from San Francisco

      Hahahaaa! Who arted!!! I am so going to pull that out from time to time.

      This was a fun read, Matt! You're going to have to write more!!