What is a Flushometer Valve?

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what are flushometer valves
Commercial Flushometer Valve

What are Flushometer Valves?

A flushometer valve is a special type of plumbing device that is used commonly in commercial bathrooms to control the flushing of toilets. It is designed to be activated by the pressure of the incoming water supply, rather than relying on a tank of stored water like most traditional toilet designs you see in almost every home in America as well as Charlotte. Flushometer valves are commonly used in commercial and public restrooms, as well as in residential buildings with high-efficiency or water-conserving toilets.

There are several key features and components you’ll see in flushometer valves:

  • Water supply line:

    The flushometer valve is connected to the water supply line usually coming out of a well, which provides a constant flow of water/pressure to the valve.

  • Inlet valve:

    The inlet valve is a component within the flushometer valve that controls the flow of water into the valve. It is typically designed to open and shut very fast, allowing a precise amount of water to flow through the valve to make the toilet (or urinal) flush.

  • Flush handle:

    The flush handle is a mechanical component that is used to activate the flushometer valve. When you press the toilet handle (or a motion sensor is triggered) things get going. The water pressure and action of the valve releasing causes the inlet valve to open and allows pressurized water to flow through the valve and into the toilet bowl.

  • Flush volume control:

    Some flushometer valves are equipped with a mechanism for adjusting the volume of water that is released during each flush. This can aid in conserving water in certain situations, or for fine-tuning the flushing action to meet the needs of a specific location.

  • Vacuum breaker:

    This vacuum-assisted mechanism is a safety component that is designed to prevent the backflow of water into the water supply line. It’s an important feature that helps to prevent the contamination of the water supply by not letting flow happen in the opposite direction and ensures that the toilet flushes properly.

Some additional reasons most public toilets use flushometer valves in toilets:

  • Water conservation:

    One of the main benefits of flushometer valves is that they can help to save water because the valve is robust and less likely to go haywire. Because the flushing action is triggered by the pressure of the water supply rather than a tank of stored water, the amount of water used for each flush can be more accurately controlled. This can lead to significant water savings, especially in buildings with many toilets.

  • Powerful flushing action:

    Flushometer valves can provide a more powerful flushing action than traditional toilet designs, which can be especially useful in commercial settings where there may be a higher volume of use. The strong flush can help to clear the bowl more effectively, reducing the need for multiple flushes or the use of harsh chemicals to clean the bowl.

  • Increased reliability:

    Flushometer valves can be more reliable than traditional toilet designs, as they do not rely on a complex network of moving parts and seals. This can help to reduce maintenance costs and increase the overall lifespan of the toilet.

  • Easy installation:

    Flushometer valves are relatively easy to install, as they do not require the use of a storage tank or other complicated components. This can make them a cost-effective choice for new construction or renovation projects.

  • Adaptability:

    Flushometer valves can be easily adapted to different water pressure levels, making them suitable for use in a variety of locations. They can also be equipped with features like automatic flush sensors, making them more convenient to use in public restrooms.

While flushometer valves offer a range of benefits, there are also some potential drawbacks to consider:

  • Noise:

    Flushometer valves can be noisier than traditional toilet designs, as the water is released under pressure rather than gradually filling a tank. This may be a concern in certain locations, such as hospitals or hotels where noise levels are a concern.

  • Cost:

    Flushometer valves may be more expensive to purchase and install than traditional toilet designs, particularly in residential settings.
    Limited flushing


To summarize, the flush mechanism in most Charlotte residential home toilets and a flushometer are two different systems designed to serve different purposes. While a residential toilet uses a gravity-based tanked system that relies on the water stored in the tank to flush the bowl, flushometers use a pressurized valve to force water into the bowl, creating a powerful flush. The choice of the flush mechanism depends on factors such as water pressure, usage frequency, and water efficiency. Both flush system types are effective in their own ways and are designed to ensure that waste is removed efficiently and hygienically.

Learn about some of the common toilet repair issues

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