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Remote flush toilet

toilet with remote flush solenoid or valve
 
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A recent study (NYU) found that the average toilet can project fecal spray some twenty feet. Because of this spray, people can get coated with a fine mist containing a variety of contagions--especially children who like to watch toilets flush.

Public toilets could have a flushing apparatus on the outside of stalls and private toilets could have a flushing apparatus near the bathroom light switch or somewhere else. One could simply stand a distance away from the toilet and flush. Of course, this may not be a problem in a private bath, where toilets have lids (except in houses with children). Public toilets often do not have lids to control fecal spray.

Many high end toilets flush with remotely located solenoids to lessen sound, so the technology is in place--the solenoid just needs a remote switch.

Vacuum toilets exist, as do pneumatic and pneumatic/water toilets, but they are still quite costly.

1kester, Dec 10 2002

Discusses remote-controlled tiolet in Japan http://www.biz2web....grant/Bathrooms.htm
Has photos of the remote switch. [bristolz, Oct 04 2004]

Toilets of the Gods http://www.astrobio...adastra/clarke.html
U.F.F.M.: Unidentified Flying Fecal Matter [1kester, Oct 04 2004]

[link]






       Seems to me all you're accomplishing is keeping *your* shit off you. Of all the shit in the world, at least I know where mine has been.
phoenix, Dec 10 2002
  

       Could be quite fun flushing someone in the midst, you could just do a quick flush as you walk past the toilets hoping someone was in there...
Supercruiser, Dec 10 2002
  

       Would adding a remote-control capability be cheaper/more practical than screwing on a lid and posting a "please flush with the lid down" sign?   

       If this fecal spray problem is genuine and any sort of actual health risk -- and not just a single fact from a single study misreported, taken out of context, and repeated endlessly in the media because it's really gross -- maybe the solution lies in making the flush mechanism the shutting of the lid itself.   

       The underside of the lid might have a shot at cleaning the seat a bit, too, while it's there.
Monkfish, Dec 10 2002
  

       //misreported, taken out of context, and repeated endlessly in the media because it's really gross//
I'd bet people inhale more "germs" than they'd ever imagine, just walking to the mailbox. However, in a public toilet, I'd dearly appreciate the ability to remotely purge a previous user's deposit.
Amos Kito, Dec 10 2002
  

       [Phoentix] Some of the sevice plazas/rest stops on highways have toilets that flush every few minutes. Shortly sfter telling a friend of the article I read about fecal spray, she went on a trip and had to use one of these automatically flushing toilets and was stricken with fear when it automatically flushed as she was using it. She could not get out of her mind the idea of having other people's fecal matter sprayed on her.   

       [Monkfish] The article that told of fecal spray reports that the rims and lids of toilets have the highest number of bacteria and contagions on them because of the fecal spray issue.   

       //misreported, taken out of context, and repeated endlessly in the media because it's really gross// Yes, the findings come from the head of the NYU Microbiology Department. He' a little more credible than the sources you imply. Contrary than your implied belief, people do study how to make our living environments safer and cleaner. Cynicism is a disease. Skepticism is a virtue.   

       In regards to the media, information like this often is reported upon several times. There are basically four levels of reports--the highest level report is the scientific study, which JAMA would publish--then, perhaps, Scientific American re-reports the study, then Time, then your daily paper.
1kester, Dec 11 2002
  

       Until, finally, [1kester] reports it to the halfbakery.   

       So, the idea here is for a remote switch?
bristolz, Dec 11 2002
  

       //fecal spray//, hhhmmmmmmm.   

       Pardon me while I eat my lunch.
Mayfly, Dec 11 2002
  

       Hm, yeah, talk about something I didn't need to know. Hey - at least it's *your* fecal spray, not someone else's. As they say, wash your hands after going to the bathroom.   

       Anyway, a search on Google for "fecal spray" turns up a grand total of 16 references on the entire Internet, not one of which mentions either NYU or scientific studies. I demand you produce a source for this dubious statistic before we worry about it any more.   

       [I am picturing the bomb squad, kitted out in hazardous materials safety gear, hunkered down on the other side of the bath tub - "Are you ready to flush? Five, four..."]
dalek, Dec 11 2002
  

       Nice try at a slam, [Bristolz].   

       [Dalek], Source (I'll edit in more detail, like the Dr's name, later): Interview witht he director of the NYU School of Medicine Clinical Microbiology and Immunology Department, Dr. Philip Tierno, by a Men's Health magazine reporter.   

       "Once you flush the toilet, a spray of water and fecal matter can move up to 20 feet from the source and literally coat everything in its vicinity."   

       Also, you reliance on the Internet for scholarly information stupifies me. No wonder most of my students conduct research like aliterate philistines.   

       I demand you enter a library, or at the least, go to Lexus Nexus and browse.
1kester, Dec 11 2002
  

       1) I'm wasn't calling you a rube, 1kester. Sorry if my annotation seemed insulting or condescending; it wasn't deliberate. From what source did you hear about this problem originally? Maybe you'd be willing to admit that things like risk assessments, details, and context in the literature of the field tend to get lost on the long trickle down to the mass media?   

       2) Leprosy is a disease; cynicism and skepticism are other things.   

       3) You should spellcheck any annotations in which you sneer at aliterate philistines.   

       4) There's not a thing wrong with relying on the internet for scholarly information. Consider MedWeb. Or LexisNexis. A general Google search is a sensible way to try to track down a reference.
Monkfish, Dec 11 2002
  

       LexisNexis appears to involve the use of money, which I am not going to spend in order to look up "fecal spray." Sorry.
dalek, Dec 11 2002
  

       additional source: This source indicates that toilets can launch fecal matter *only* four feet and not twenty feet. <Scholastic Choices, Apr97, Vol. 12 Issue 7, p4.>   

       [monkfish] You didn't offend me in any manner. I often post rudely, however. 1) I provided citation information and also (above) provided an additional source that took all of three minutes to ferret out 2) metaphor functions as a semantic operator 3) typos noted (in several posts) but aliterates and philistines have nothing to do with grammatik and more to do with coordination 4) As my post indicates, I have nothing against searching the internet for sources but I do have something against reliance upon search engines to conduct research To help find academic Internet resources, insert an "academic" word into your search query. However, I now know that I should have used the phrase "fecal matter spray" because "fecal spray" might refer to...   

       [BM] I never knew of ultra-high-end toilets until recently.
1kester, Dec 11 2002
  

       No slam intended. Not everyone operates as you do.   

       I was genuinely trying to ferret out where the original thinking is here. Remote flushing toilets (extant) and remotely locatable switches (extant) for same just don't seem very innovative to me.   

       Perhaps the addition of an articulated cover--like a camera iris or similar--that closes before the flush is initiated, would provide a clearer breakthrough.   

       As for your demand that your readers go to great lengths including physical visits to a library to support your contentions: this is a Web site and I think it not outlandish to expect that the onus for documentation rests upon you and that it be Web accessible (unless it is very common knowledge).
bristolz, Dec 11 2002
  

       Does this have to be "remote control" ? It seems to me that a simple time delay would be enough. Use toilet, press button, wash hands and leave. a minute later, the toilet flushes, and then a disinfectant mist is sprayed. Could be done mechanically - even clockwork.   

       Croissant for the public health idea.
8th of 7, Dec 11 2002
  

       [Bristolz] I thought of an iris or some sort of screen and a few problems came to mind such as: getting clogged with toilet paper, getting clogged or stuck from natural minerals in the water, vandalism in public toilets, and the possibility of water leaking into the slots the iris would slide into and out of. I also thought of how children like to flush objects into the toilet and/or watch their feces go down the pipes--a remote switch, out of children's reach, could prevent undue bacterial contact. As for the library, I do web development on the side and mentioned that to get some people roused up. Automatic flushers, as a friend told me, now scare her.   

       I updated the citation from the microbiology professor to include a quote.
1kester, Dec 11 2002
  

       Maybe an air curtain?
bristolz, Dec 11 2002
  

       I just tried searching for "fecal matter spray toilet". Man, not only did I get precisely zero research papers, but I think I want to resign from the human race.   

       I'm still a little puzzled about the physics of the thing: if said fecal matter is entirely underwater when the flush starts, and the flush swirls it all straight down the drain, as it tends to do in our house, how can it possibly end up being sprayed out even four feet?   

       And, as someone has noted above, if you wash your hands afterwards, who cares anyway? Just how many people do you have standing around when you flush the toilet? (Um, in light of my search results, please do not tell me.)
DrCurry, Dec 11 2002
  

       So that's why they come with lids. The things you learn...   

       // air curtain //   

       Like the blow-out stairs of excitement?
RayfordSteele, Dec 11 2002
  

       I like the idea. Id prefer if it flushed when you closed the door behind you.
mbracke, Jun 01 2003
  

       Guess I won't be reclining when taking one of those long ones anymore...
Poopback, Jul 17 2003
  
      
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