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The last few days I had to use Canadian toilets. Now I'm from Europe and I'm used to Central European toilets:

enter image description here

As you can see, the water is really far down the toilet and if "things" fall in there, you won't get splashed. On the other hand, toilets in Canada look more like this:

enter image description here

As you can see, there is quite a huge flat area in the toilet that is normally full of water. So every time I take a dump I splash myself with water.

Seriously, how can I avoid that?

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Maybe the problem is in your load... maybe it is too damn heavy ;) –  MeNoTalk Aug 14 '12 at 4:44
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@hippietrail Well, I think less fiber will do the job!! –  MeNoTalk Aug 14 '12 at 8:11
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could it possibly be the problem you're having is your toilet HAS NO SEAT??? –  Mark Mayo Aug 14 '12 at 9:00
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Put some toilet paper on the water first, you silly European. Or take smaller/softer dumps. –  user2969 Aug 14 '12 at 18:06
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2 Answers 2

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Well I wish you had used a photo of a cleaner European toilet for comparison. What will the Canadians think?!

Indeed this is typical of North American toilets. The same applies down in Good Ole USA too. In fact I've seen much higher water levels than this.

There are two answers really:

  1. Man up and take it! In some places in Europe they have a much crazier thing next to the toilet called a bidet and you don't want to know what that does!
  2. Some of the more sensitive people in that part of the world mitigate the problem by creating a layer of toilet paper over the surface of the water before commencement of activities.

Since you brought up this particularly tasteful topic I have some related observations:

  • A gentleman using a low-water toilet can aim at the porcelain to reduce the chance of waking anybody unfortunate enough to be sleeping within earshot. With a high-water toilet there is only the noisy option.
  • High-water toilets seem to have a propensity to overflow. It seems to occur or at least be mentioned in American sitcoms and I've definitely seen it happen at a friend's place in LA, but I've never seen a low-water toilet overflow.
  • High-water toilets, so the justification goes, provide total submersion for unpleasant substances thus reducing the propagation of nasty odours.
  • High-water toilets put on a much more exciting show when flushed. Rather than just "foosh" and it's all over with a low-water toilet, you'll often see the contents of the bowl turn into a whirlpool at an accelerating pace until everything is banished into the abyss with an accompaniment of merry gurgling sounds.
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If you decide to man up and take it.. then you better flush the toilet before using it.. at least to make sure the water splash is clean.. –  MeNoTalk Aug 14 '12 at 8:12
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Hint: Any yellowish hue or objects either submerged or floating suggest a pre-flush wouldn't be a bad idea. –  hippietrail Aug 14 '12 at 8:19
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OK then...warning, this gets graphic.

The problem

enter image description here

North American toilets tend to be siphoning toilets - that is, the water-ways in these toilets are designed with slightly smaller diameters than a non-siphoning toilet, so that the water-way will naturally fill up with water, each time it is flushed, thus creating the siphon action.

The recognised problem is the splashing that frequently occurs upon load. Due to the increased water, often higher water level, and area and size of wet target when released, the odds are increased dramatically.

How to avoid the dreaded splash

There are a few suggestions here:

  • Watch this video on avoiding splashing yourself in a public toilet (graphic)
  • Read this Lifehacker article (with video) on how to use toilet paper to weaken splash occurrences
  • Follow further advice that a light towel or toilet paper (disposable) will reduce/eliminate splashback
  • to clarify, if sitting, sit ON the toilet, do not perch: enter image description here
  • Aim when possible, for the porcelain, rather than the water. Try to angle where you're not hitting a surface at right angles to the surface, but along it instead. The change in velocity is less dramatic, and it will 'dribble' rather than splash.
  • Experiment with different positions (if sitting) - further forward, further back, perhaps to a side.
  • If peeing, try kneeling down; less velocity when the liquid hits the water
  • If desperate, consider jumping away, but this can end up even worse...

Final, desperate solution - when in doubt and you need a technological solution, you can always rely on the Japanese to come up with something. I introduce - toilet knee pads!

enter image description here

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Some of this sourced from 9gag or you are also a talented artist? –  hippietrail Aug 14 '12 at 8:43
    
Oh I'm assuming it's 9gag, but it was posted on a random other site. I'm trying to find the original. –  Mark Mayo Aug 14 '12 at 8:44
    
I've seen the "Do not stand on the toilet seat or bowl" sticker at the University of New South Wales. I assumed most people would know the difference between a sitting and a squat toilet, until I found out about the Anglo-Indian toilet, which allows either sitting or squatting. –  Andrew Grimm Aug 16 '12 at 23:38
    
Careful pasting stuff here from random other sites. At Stack Exchange we try to honour copyright! –  hippietrail Apr 9 '13 at 2:54
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I've seen foot prints on the toilet seat in Dubai Airport... –  Omar Kooheji May 30 '13 at 8:48
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protected by Ankur Banerjee Sep 2 '13 at 8:38

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