What Is a Power Flush Toilet?

T. L. Childree

A power flush toilet uses compressed air to significantly increase its flushing ability. Unlike traditional gravity models, it stores its flushing water in a special pressurized tank. The efficient design eliminates the need for second flushes and reduces water consumption. The high velocity flush produced by this toilet also reduces clogging of sewer lines. Some models are equipped with an electric pump for use in homes with lower water pressure.

A toilet is a plumbing receptacle for human waste.
A toilet is a plumbing receptacle for human waste.

Traditional flush toilets rely upon gravity to empty the contents of the bowl. A power flush toilet makes use of compressed air to force waste out and into the drain pipe. These toilets have a bowl and tank assembly that is similar to gravity models, but they are equipped with a specially designed pressure chamber inside the tank. The water supply is connected directly to the pressure chamber and recharges the device after each flush.

Power flush toilets generally put less strain on sewer and septic tank systems.
Power flush toilets generally put less strain on sewer and septic tank systems.

The flush of this style of toilet can be quite noisy, and some newer models have been redesigned for quieter operation. Certain types are also designed for dual operation, so they can be flushed by the traditional gravity method or by pressure-assisted operation.

The highly efficient flushing mechanism also reduces excess water consumption. Conventional gravity toilets sometimes require repeated flushing to completely remove waste from the bowl. The high velocity water movement of a power flush toilet is usually able to remove the entire contents of the bowl in a single flush. Fewer flushes result in decreased water consumption and lower utility costs, and it also puts less strain on sewer and septic tank systems.

The high velocity water movement produced by these toilets also helps to prevent clogged sewer lines. Most models carry waste twice as far as traditional gravity versions and keep sewer pipes cleaner. This action helps minimize the possibility of sewer backups caused by clogged pipes. A power flush toilet does require a sufficient amount of incoming water pressure to properly fill the storage chamber, so certain pressure-assisted models are also equipped with an electric motor to help fill the storage chamber when sufficient water pressure is unavailable.

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Discussion Comments


I think the best toilet is one that gives you an option. It would be nice to be able to choose between a gentle, quiet flush or a power flush, depending on how much waste you needed to move through the toilet.


@healthy4life – I hate those public restroom toilets! Even though I've learned to expect a loud noise whenever I flush, I still jump when I hear it.

The sound just blasts my eardrums. What's worse is when I'm not expecting it. You know how some toilets just sense when you are done and flush automatically? Well, sometimes I'm still sitting on the toilet when this happens, and I don't appreciate getting sprayed with drops of water!


Department store restrooms have the best power flush toilets. I believe they could flush just about anything you might put in the toilet!

Even if I've already stood up when the toilet has flushed, I can feel the air moving as the pressure shoots forth. It's like a little cool breeze in the stall.

I think it's great that most public restrooms have this type of toilet. I'm sure it cuts down on the number of times someone has to unclog the system. I suppose if someone put an entire roll of paper in there, it might get clogged, but I don't think that several sheets of paper are going to stop it up.


I wish we had a power flush toilet system at work. I work in an old building that only has two restrooms, and both of the toilets flush slowly and usually require multiple flushes.

Also, they get clogged all the time. It doesn't take much toilet paper to stop one of these toilets up.

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