What Are Toilet Seats Made From?

A toilet seat is a product that people use multiple times per day. However, not everyone is familiar with what a toilet seat is comprised of. Many people aren’t even aware that you can get a wooden toilet seat, bamboo toilet seat, elongated toilet seat, padded toilet seat, and even a heated toilet seat.

What Material Is Toilet Seat Made From?

Toilet seats are manufactured with one of two different types of material. Plastic toilet seats are made with polystyrene. Another option is to get a toilet seat that is created with both plastic and wood. The wood is birch or maple that’s ground up into a flour-like consistency.

Once the flour is ground up, it’s combined with a powdered form of plastic resin known as melamine. After that, zinc stearate is added to the mix, and zinc stearate reduces the chances of the mixture adhering to the mold throughout the production process.

Related: Replacing a toilet seat with hidden bolts.

man opening a toilet sheet

What Plastic is Used for Toilet Seats?

The plastic used for toilet seats is known as polystyrene, and the manufacturing process is somewhat of science if you look closer into it. A production worker will feed polystyrene pellets into a device known as a hopper that’s secured to an injection molding machine.

The production worker will place a measured portion of pellets into the toilet seat molding. This process is known as injection molding. The polystyrene pellets will then melted and then injected right into the molding.

The polystyrene liquid then flows through a tiny hole in the center of a two-part mold. The mold is composed of machined die steel that has been chrome plated. Its two halves are hollowed out to resemble a toilet seat and lid.

When the mold is full, a massive hydraulic press clamps it together. It applies 10,000 pounds per square inch (4,540 kilograms per square centimeter) of pressure to the mold and warms the polystyrene to 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius).

The plastic in the mold starts to harden. The temperature is reduced by pumping cool water through a channel system around the mold. A worker releases the hydraulic clamp and separates the mold’s two pieces.

The production worker takes the seat and covers out of the mold, cutting off any excess plastic in the water channel. The worker next immerses the seat. Then it covers it in water.

Choosing Your Toilet Seat

You’ll want to do some research when it comes time to figure out what type of toilet seat you’ll want to use. Some of the choices are:

  • Enameled wood
  • Plastic
  • Soft and veneer

Each toilet seat comes with its own set of strengths and weaknesses.

Enameled Wood Toilet Seats

Enameled wood toilet seats feel very durable and sturdy. They come with a glossy finish that prevents any stains or chips from happening. A lot of people describe these toilet seats as feeling warm.

You can get enameled wood toilet seats in several different design options:

  • Sculptured models
  • A metal hinge that increases the aesthetics of your bathroom
  • A plastic hinge that you can remove whenever you need to clean

Plastic Toilet Seats

Plastic toilet seats are a very common option that people choose. They aren’t as heavy-duty as enameled wood toilet seats, but they are still known to be quite durable and will last a long time. Plastic toilet seats also resist cracks, chips, and stains.

Design Options:

  • You can choose several different colors
  • You can take off the plastic hinges to clean easier
  • You can customize them with chrome hinges

Related: Chair vs comfort toilet seat height? What’s the difference?

Soft Toilet Seats

Soft toilet seats contain a cushion that’s located between the lid and the toilet seat. It’s then covered with vinyl to provide a comfortable and soft feel when you sit on it. Soft toilet seats make your bathroom feel much like a spa.

These toilet seats are perfect for those that have pain throughout their body when they sit down. Many elderly people like the soft cushion that these toilet seats provide.

Wood Finish Toilet Seats

If you’re wanting to create a natural and warm feel in your bathroom, getting wood-finish toilet seats is an ideal option to go with. Molded wood finish toilet seats come with a finish that will lower the chances of any splitting or cracking occurring.

There are a couple of different wood toilet seat finishes available:

  • Bamboo Toilet Seat
  • Oak Toilet Seat
  • Walnut Toilet Seat

How Often Should You Replace Your Toilet Seat?

While the actual time interval by which you should replace your toilet seat might differ from one person to the next, the average rule of thumb should be anywhere between five and seven years.

Several indicators will help you decide when to replace your toilet seats:

If you’ve just moved to a new home: If you’ve recently moved into a home, you might want to consider swapping over the old toilet seats for new ones. No one knows how often the previous seats were cleaned, and most people spend nearly two hours per week on the toilet.

If the toilet seat moves around: If you sit on the toilet seat and it feels loose and tends to move around, you might want to consider replacing it. Toilet seats should feel sturdy and solid when you sit on them, and if they are loose, there is a good chance that one or both of the hinges are broken.

If your toilet seat is broken: This usually goes without saying, but if you notice any cracks on your toilet seat, you’ll want to replace it as soon as you can. No one wants to be dealing with a cracked and broken toilet seat every time they use the bathroom, and replacing it is just one measure to reduce the stress in your life.

If there is fluctuation in the seasonal temperature: Some people just like to get decorative depending on what season it is.

What Should I Look for When Buying a Toilet Seat?

When considering a new toilet seat, there are a couple of things to look out for:

Shape Of Your Toilet

shape of your toilet

Toilet seat options are available for a standard toilet, an elongated bowl, and a round toilet. So, when you’re looking at getting new toilet seats, you need to keep that in mind.


You’ll want to figure out if you want a plastic, wooden, or cushioned toilet seat. All these options are good, but some like to select a certain option depending on their preferences.

Getting the right toilet seat might be confusing when you first start researching. You’ll want to carefully consider what type of design you’re wanting to get out of your bathroom when picking a toilet seat that works for you.

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