Dayle Laing

The ‘coolest shade of green’ is the sustainable choice. Dayle Laing is a Professional Speaker and Author who uses her experience and training as an educator, a designer and a LEED Accredited Professional to empower Conscious Consumers to make practical yet beautiful choices for sustainable living, reducing their carbon footprint while enhancing their body, mind & spirit.

green_toilet_150You might wonder what is the ‘Coolest Shade of Green’ for toilets going into a LEED Platinum certified building.

Maybe you have had an experience similar to mine, when I was designing a bathroom for a client a decade ago, who proclaimed loudly that he must have a “big flush” toilet. He claimed the newer lower-flush toilets just didn’t perform well and he was not impressed with having to flush twice. We have come a long way in toilet-technology in the last 10 years and even more since Thomas Crapper applied for patents to improve water closets in mid 19th century Britain.

LEED_platinum_100Recently, I attended a seminar about the certification of Chapelview in Brampton, Canada. Martinway Contracting Ltd. is attempting 54 points, slating this to likely become the first LEED Platinum certified affordable housing project in the world. Green toilets are one of the products they considered to achieve this remarkable goal.

Steve Kemp of Enermodal Engineering and the senior LEED consultant on the Chapelview project explained that 2/3 of water used in a home is flushed potable water. That means that our good drinking water is being wasted, especially with the older 12-litre flush toilets!

proficiency_3_litre_toilet_280Martinway Contracting Partner, John D’Angelo selected for this project, the Proficiency_toilet, which is the first 3-litre toilet for both liquid and solid flushes. It uses an air transfer system to create an aggressive flush that really works the first time and is less noisy than pressurized flush systems. Pressure is maintained in the trapway, instead of the tank. It was designed by Phil Hennessy of Hennessy & Hinchcliffe Inc. of Mississauga Canada, and is available through all major wholesalers and can be ordered through retailers such as Home Hardware. Use of this toilet is a major component for the Chapelview project set to achieve an astonishing 46% water reduction over what would normally be expected.

niagara_flapperless_toilet_150Other toilets that also have significant advantages in water savings include the Niagara_Flapperless range of toilets, with 6.0 and 4.8 litre sizes. Noted for its flapperless tip-bucket design, it is innovative, simple, and leak proof. Conventional toilets can leak at the base of the tank when the flapper does not align properly or sit tightly. A bucket holds the water in a flapperless toilet tank, preventing cold water from shocking the porcelain with every flush, creating an advantage for longeveity of the tank and lack of condensation during the summer.

Choosing a low-flow toilet that performs efficiently can save a homeowner hundreds of dollars per year according to Hennessy, and this will become even more critical as the price of our precious natural resource is bound to increase.  It can also save our municipalities (and therefore our taxes), millions of dollars in reduced costs to pump, distribute and treat water and wastewater.

If you have questions, comments or would like to book a seminar on any aspect of green design, please contact Dayle at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Comments (3)

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Dayle,<br /><br />I want to say that I truly do enjoy your articles; terrific read.<br />Thanks again. <br /><br />Jason Coleman,<br />J. Ennis Fabrics<br /><br />Thanks Jason, you are welcome. J. Ennis Fabrics has several 'green' fabric...

Dayle,<br /><br />I want to say that I truly do enjoy your articles; terrific read.<br />Thanks again. <br /><br />Jason Coleman,<br />J. Ennis Fabrics<br /><br />Thanks Jason, you are welcome. J. Ennis Fabrics has several 'green' fabric collections which offer good selection for designers. I urge your company to continue to market more, so we may have even greater choice in selecting textiles that are good for the environment and for our own health!<br /><br />Kind regards,<br />Dayle

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Hi Dayle,<br /><br />Thanks for the interesting newsletters – I find them very helpful. Do you have anything on green furniture by chance? It’s for a finished basement and we’re looking at a couch and loveseat for seating. We’re also looking at...

Hi Dayle,<br /><br />Thanks for the interesting newsletters – I find them very helpful. Do you have anything on green furniture by chance? It’s for a finished basement and we’re looking at a couch and loveseat for seating. We’re also looking at a bookshelf, TV stand and perhaps some foot rests and/or a centre table. We’re hoping to avoid off gassing and any other harmful emissions as much as possible without breaking the bank.<br /><br />Pat<br /><br />Hello Pat,<br /><br />I do know of an upholstered furniture company who sells across Canada, so they should have a dealer in Calgary. They are Brentwood Classics and they have a green line of fabrics including organic cottons, linens and wool. Their upholstery foam has a substantial percentage of soybean oil, which should off-gas less than if it were all polyurethane, and which is of course, renewable. Their product line is in the moderately priced category.<br /><br />For a coffee table or book shelves, you could consider a local artisan who will oil their work, rather than use a polyurethane finish. If you don’t want solid wood, then you could consider IKEA, or anyone who uses finishes that are formaldehyde free. That is usually the major irritant for people who are bothered by offgassing. There is a small amount of naturally occurring formaldehyde in wood, but the urea formaldehyde in finishes or adhesives is the issue.<br /><br />Hope this helps to get you started! <br /><br />Best regards,<br />Dayle

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Hi Pat,<br />You can find our product in Calgary at Sojourn, http://www.sojournhome.com.<;br />Good luck with your project!

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