Types of Bidets and What To Expect With Each

Last Updated on April 13, 2021

The Unites States may be the only country in the world where a bidet is not a common household fixture.

Toiletops is here to buck that trend.

In fact, in many countries, it is strange to walk into a restroom and not see a bidet, but in the western world it causes a few raised eyebrows.

Citizens in other parts of the world, particularly South-East Asia, South Asia and the Middle East, realize how beneficial a bidet is for both personal hygiene and the environment and it’s about time Americans realize it as well.

Types of bidets

The bidet dates back to the 1700s and credit is given to the French for its invention. Fortunately, the bidet has gone through several upgrades since its early days with several types available in today’s market. Versions range from manual to electric, with a variety of choices in between to suit the needs of just about everyone.

Hand Held Bidet

The hand held bidet is the most popular in Europe (also known as a Shattaf), most likely because it is small and simple to use, similar to a shower head but for the restroom–the general makeup of a hand held bidet set up is a shut-off T-valve, the hose and spray head.

However, there is a bit of a learning curve to figuring out exactly how to position yourself in order to get clean.

Hand held bidets are perfect for those without a lick of plumbing experience because they can attach to the toilet in your home without requiring installation of an entire new system.

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Traditional Stand Alone

Unlike a hand held bidet, a traditional stand alone bidet is a separate appliance installed next to a toilet. This choice of bidet typically comes at a higher cost but includes everything to manage the temperature of the water, which is a nice feature, along with water pressure.

Stand alone bidets usually sit on the floor next to the toilet but also can be placed on an adjacent wall. It is attached similar to a urinal in a men’s restroom.

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TOTO Piedmont Bidet
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Toilet Seat Bidets

Toilet seats also can be found with a bidet, and the good news is this version comes in both a non-electric and electric version.

The non-electric does not require electricity and instead uses pressure from the pipes–it is easier on the wallet than its electric counterpart and also easier to install, but don’t expect any fancy tools such as a dryer with this type of bidet.

If you’re searching for an easy-to-use, sleek bidet, an electric toilet seat bidet might be the way to go. It will come with a higher price tag, but might just be worth the extra features.

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Bidet Attachment

For home owners wanting an easy approach they can install themselves, the bidet attachment is the perfect option. It simply connects to your toilet and saves much more space compared to other bidets on the market.

It’s a great choice for those wanting to test out a bidet without putting up a lot of money up front.

Give the bidet attachment a try, and if it is a good fit, upgrade to another selection later on. The bidet attachment also is ideal for renters because they can purchase the fixture, then take it with them when they move without losing the money they invested.

If we were to recommend any type of bidet to a novice user, it would be the bidet attachment.

Most everyone at Toilets got their first experience using a bidet buy taking the plunge on a low-cost bidet attachment. For less than around $40, you can get a bare-bones bidet in your home.

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Toilet and Bidet Combo

The newest model to hit the bidet market is a toilet combo, making it easy to pick out a toilet and bidet all in one.

Particularly here in America where many are not quite use to seeing a bidet in the bathroom, it is a great option for style and design. It allows you the convenience of having a bidet in your home without shocking any of your house guests.

It also won’t take up any additional space, perfect if your bathroom is limited on space.

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Portable Bidet

Once the convenience and health benefits of a bidet are discovered, it is hard to go back to using regular toilet paper.

But what do you do when you’re away from the conveniences of home?

Fortunately, there are portable bidets available. A portable bidet is similar to a water bottle with a nozzle at the top, making it easy to take with you on the go.

If arthritis is a problem or you are just wanting something a bit easier to use, there are battery operated ones available, but the pressure is not as strong as a regular bidet.

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GUSTYLE Portable Travel Bidet
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GUSTYLE Portable Travel Bidet
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Overall Health Benefits

While a bidet might seem like a foreign concept to many Americans, it is time to get on board the bidet train and all the health benefits that come with it for both the consumer and the environment.

For starters, a bidet can clean much more thoroughly than any toilet paper on the market, therefore improving cleanliness and personal hygiene.

For those with arthritis, handicapped or have a hard time getting around, a bidet can become a must for the bathroom. Other medical conditions, such as hemorrhoids, can make toilet paper difficult to use thus the bidet becomes the most viable option.

If you’re a mother who has just given birth, you’ll thank your lucky stars you have a bidet available in your home.

Bidets also are better for the environment, eliminating the need for paper while also being easier on those pipes.


If the idea of a bidet is new to you, there’s a good chance there are a million questions swirling around in your head.

What is a bidet?

Let’s start with the obvious: what is a bidet?

It is a plumbing fixture usually situated next to the toilet or on the toilet. It is meant to clean the genital and buttock area after using the restroom with a stream of water instead of the use of toilet paper.

It also is useful for women during their monthly cycle.

As discussed above, the bidet comes in several different types, from simple to extravagant, fitting all types of budgets, space requirements and user needs.

What is a bidet used for?

A bidet is intended to clean the body after using the restroom. It is a gentler, more economical replacement for toilet paper.

Why use a bidet?

For starters, a bidet is much gentler on the body compared to the rough sides of toilet paper, even if you pick the softest toilet paper on the market.

Those who have arthritis in their hands, are elderly, have trouble moving or need help using the restroom will find a bidet extremely useful, but a bidet can be a great tool that is beneficial for everyone’s health, young or old, weak or strong, because it is far more sanitary than using paper to wipe.

A bidet is environmentally friendly, but it can be counter intuitive if you use toilet paper after the bidet. After usage you do still need to dry, and many will still reach for the toilet paper, thus not saving any paper.

However, if you can use a washcloth to dry with or use a bidet that comes with a dryer, you will be on your way to helping mother earth, and while a bidet does use water, it uses much less so than the production of toilet paper requires.

While the bidet is using water to help you keep clean, it is flushing water and not paper back down your pipes, reducing the rate of plumbing-related issues, which is a benefit for any homeowner.

Last but not least, a bidet is going to keep you cleaner. It is as simple as that and staying clean is vital to the health of your body and preventing the spread of infection and bacteria. A bidet can help cut down on urinary tract infections passed by wiping the wrong direction or moving bacteria around, particularly in children who have not quite perfected cleanliness.

How do you use a bidet?

When it comes to learning how to use a bidet, there is a learning process involved and mainly in the correct angles and simply getting comfortable with a new process. For a traditional choice, it is best to sit facing toward the bidet. There is no seat, so it is best to sit with your legs around it.

There should be controls for warm or cold water, and just like in a bath or shower, adjust the temperature to your liking. Situate yourself to where you feel comfortable with the angle, and if it is a new bidet, slowly open the tap until the pressure is correct.

If you find yourself with a hand held bidet, it might take a few tries before you get it down just right. Find the T-valve, which should be attached to the toilet’s fill valve behind the toilet. You can then position the bidet either in between your legs, or behind your back, whatever you prefer. Angle it just right so the water falls into the toilet. This is the tricky part, so be patient. Squeeze the trigger very carefully until you have learned the correct pressure for washing.

A bidet toilet seat is typically easy to use, but there might a few features you have to figure out. However, for the most part you just sit and push a button, making it easy peasy, but make sure you familiarize yourself with the advanced features. The bidet is already installed at the correct angle, all you have to do is press the right button when you’re ready to go. There’s no angling, moving or adjusting needed.

A portable bidet also can be simple to use because you are in charge of the pressure. This type does require the user to fill the bottle up with tap water from the sink. Many use portable bidets at home as well as on the road, but the refilling can become quite tedious. For short trips and vacations, it can be an excellent choice. Angle the bidet facing down and simply squeeze the water out to get clean. If battery operated, follow similar instructions, but test out the pressure before giving it a go.

How does a bidet work?

A bidet is convenient and easy to use, with dedicated buttons that begin the washing process. Many have both posterior and frontal washing functions. A nozzle allows the user to adjust the position to suit their needs. Water temperature and pressure also can typically be changed with the touch of a button.

How do you say “Bidet”?

Bidet can be a tricky word for the English language, but it is pronounced “buh” “dei.” Practice it a few times and you will feel like a fancy Frenchman in no time.

How do you install a bidet?

Installation of a bidet can range from simple for any homeowner to requiring the assistance of a plumber, depending on the type of bidet you choose. Grab that tool box and get ready to install your new bidet.

Portable bidets, of course, do not require any installation, you just have to ensure you fill it up each time you plan to use it.

Bidet attachments need the water supply turned off and the owner’s manual handy. Follow the step by step instructions and you should be able to handle this job on your own.

For bidet toilet seats, if you pay careful attention to what you are doing, it is possible to install it yourself. Start by turning off the water supply, a vital step that must not be missed. Remove your old toilet seat and discard. Following the instructions of the owner’s manual provided with your bidet, attach the mounting plate and then install the new toilet. Turn on the water supply and you’re ready to go.

If you chose a toilet bidet combo, begin by turning off the water and disconnecting the water supply. Next, separate the toilet and bowl, unbolt the tank and toilet bowl, carefully remove the old caulk around the toilet taking care not to scratch the floor, inspect the flange and replace any rusted bolts you previously removed, install the new wax ring, place the toilet on the flange, bolt the toilet to the floor and attach the new tank.

Make sure to read carefully with the owner’s manual for any specific instructions on the bidet portion of the toilet. If it’s all good, then reconnect the water supply and turn the water back on.

If purchasing a traditional bidet, it is best to consult the experts on this one. It is a complicated task for those without plumbing experience.

Where can I buy a bidet?

Despite the bidet not being the most common plumbing fixture in the country, it is easily accessible in stores across the United States and online. They are available at a wide variety of places, from home improvement centers to superstores. Popular eCommerce sites also provide bidets and several bidet companies offer purchases directly from their website.

Maybe you have a family member who is having a hard time moving around, or maybe you’re searching for the best options in keeping clean. Maybe you’re searching for the perfect way to do your part for a greener environment and a healthier tomorrow. Whatever the case, it is worth giving the bidet a chance and seeing why it is so popular in other cultures. If you’re not ready for a big investment, start small with a portable bidet or a simple bidet attachment. Once you’re hooked, then you can invest the money for a permanent fixture sure to leave you happy you made the change from toilet paper to bidet.