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Thread: American Standard Cadet 3 Three Toilet consumer product review

  1. #196

    Default Cadet 3, Toto Drake, or Kohler?

    I was seriously considering installing a couple of American Standard compact Elongated Cadet 3 toilets in my house which will be a very pleasant upgrade from a couple of terrible peerless toilets, but now I'm hesitant after reading quite a few of the posts in this forum and speaking to a plumber the other day. A local plumber said he was not a big fan of the American Standard Cadet and preferred the Kohler Cimaron. My 3rd toilet in the house, which I'm not replacing, is a Kohler that was in place when I bought the house 8 years ago and it has been great compared the the sorry Peerless toilets. I was leaning toward the compact EL Cadet 3 due to space and budget contraints as well as Home Depot's in store ratings on performance.

    From what I read on this thread, it seems as though the Toto brand is the toilet preferred by many plumbers as well as homeowners. What really puzzles me is that if that is the case then why would it be that my local home improvement centers don't appear to carry the Toto brand? (Lowes & Home Depot in Atlanta). I did some research and I can order the Toto Drakes from a local supply house at a reasonable price. I would probably end up spending and extra $100 per toilet.

    I'm a DIY type of guy, and although this is my first time replacing toilets, I have already pulled the old toilets to be replaced, because I just had new bath floors installed, and will likely install the new toilets myself so if I have to make minor repairs to the toilets down the road it's not a big deal as I've done this over the years for all the toilets in the house.

    Should I spend the extra money for the Toto Drakes or just go with the A.S. Cadet 3 compacts? They both seem to be about the same length which is a very important consideration in my small bathrooms. Also, are the Totos easier to install in tight spaces?
    Last edited by Reader Review; 08-13-2009 at 07:58 AM. Reason: misspell

  2. #197
    Customer Service Manager Plumbing Wholesale Peanut9199's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stephjam View Post
    What really puzzles me is that if that is the case then why would it be that my local home improvement centers don't appear to carry the Toto brand? (Lowes & Home Depot in Atlanta).
    It's not that they don't want to carry it (i get calls every day from big box stores) and we don't want to sell to them.

    The negatives from selling to big box stores outway the benifits and Toto is doing quite well without those sales.

  3. #198
    DIY Junior Member miracj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrobrien View Post
    We got three Cadet 3 Flowwise toilets from Lowes and installed one.

    I am sad to say that on the third flush of solid waste, the darn thing clogged requiring a plunger. And not to be graphic, but it really wasn't that much to flush.
    Not to disagree, but my experience is quite the opposite. I installed a Cadet 3 Flowise (1.28 gallon/flush) elongated, standard height, which has a 3" pipe to 4" toilet flange.

    I have one user that creates really hard, very large diameter (like 2 inches) waste and relatively long as well on a regular basis that would clog my previous toilet (1986 vintage) 2 out of 3 times.

    Another user fills the bowl on occasion with a large amount of waste (but not so hard) as well.

    Add to that the typical variety of things that have to flushed.

    While this is not a scientific sampling, I'd say it gives a good variety of test flushes to the Cadet 3 Flowise, which has yet to clog for me over it's 2 month usage so far.

    Assuming a good toilet unit (and I understand why a plumber goes with a Toto if it eliminates callbacks), for an individual DIY-er, I believe the Cadet 3 Flowise is a good, cost-effective choice. (Less than $275 from Lowe's)
    Last edited by miracj; 08-13-2009 at 06:36 AM.

  4. #199
    DIY Member organic_smallhome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miracj View Post
    Not to disagree, but my experience is quite the opposite. I installed a Cadet 3 Flowise (1.28 gallon/flush) elongated, standard height, which has a 3" pipe to 4" toilet flange.

    I have one user that creates really hard, very large diameter (like 2 inches) waste and relatively long as well on a regular basis that would clog my previous toilet (1986 vintage) 2 out of 3 times.

    Another user fills the bowl on occasion with a large amount of waste (but not so hard) as well.

    Add to that the typical variety of things that have to flushed.

    While this is not a scientific sampling, I'd say it gives a good variety of test flushes to the Cadet 3 Flowise, which has yet to clog for me over it's 2 month usage so far.

    Assuming a good toilet unit (and I understand why a plumber goes with a Toto if it eliminates callbacks), for an individual DIY-er, I believe the Cadet 3 Flowise is a good, cost-effective choice. (Less than $275 from Lowe's)
    Just a thought: I believe that Toto makes toilets that cost as much as or less than $275 (the Dalton, perhaps?) that would be of higher quality than the Cadet 3.

    Of course, I don't really know what I'm talking about, since I've been learning about toilets for less than a week now. But based on my research. . .

  5. #200
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    I believe that Toto makes toilets that cost as much as or less than $275 (the Dalton, perhaps?) that would be of higher quality than the Cadet 3.
    That's a fair statement.
    I sell the Dalton round front with high bowl for $185
    I had one installed in the home for a while.
    It worked well.

  6. #201
    Senior Robin Hood Guy Ian Gills's Avatar
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    I don't recall spending nearly $300 on my Cadet 3. Perhaps half of that?

    But then again, it has been so reliable for so many years that perhaps prices were cheaper way back then.

    Oh, I remember the "good ol' days" when gas was nearly 4 bucks a gallon. Sigh.
    Last edited by Ian Gills; 08-14-2009 at 12:46 PM.

  7. #202
    DIY Junior Member miracj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    I sell the Dalton round front with high bowl for $185
    The $275 was for a bone (not white) color, Cadet 3 Flowise (1.28 gallons, not 1.6 gallons) elongated, standard height. The item was in the catalog, but not in the store, so it needed to be ordered, but not special ordered. Total cost was $263+tax. No shipping expense.

    Are we comparing apples and oranges?

  8. #203
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    I sell the Bone Toto Dalton comfort height for $202
    The Bone Toto Drake RF for $279

    Are we comparing apples and oranges?
    Not really.
    Toto and American Standard are not in the same class.
    If you look at the toilets we are throwing away, and returning for problems, that pile would be American Standard.
    The fact that you found one that wasn't defective doesn't mean much.
    You were lucky.
    Maybe you should buy a lottery ticket today.
    Last edited by Terry; 08-14-2009 at 05:14 PM.

  9. #204
    Senior Robin Hood Guy Ian Gills's Avatar
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    From a user's point of view I have sat on my fair share of Toto commercial and residential toilets and have not found their performance or quality to be that far ahead of my Cadet 3, if at all.

    The Lufthansa business class lounge at Dulles Airport has Toto toilets. They're nice but not so far ahead of my Cadet 3 to make me think about changing my toilet.

    My most recent hotel on vacation to the Keys had a Toto Guinevere. Again, no big deal.

    I really do not see what all the fuss is about.

    The Cadet 3 is a well-priced, good toilet that flushes (almost) as well as any Toto I have sat on. And mine came neatly out of the box as well. So it looks like at least two of us have been struck by lighting, eh? And I know there are more that have not had any problems and are pleased.

    The one thing that does stand out is Toto brassware however. I like their flush valves in commercial operation, but I do not see them that often.

    But with porcelain products I'll take my chances thank you.
    Last edited by Ian Gills; 08-14-2009 at 08:12 PM.

  10. #205

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    Are we comparing apples and oranges?
    Orange you glad you bought a Toto toilet?

    I better apples for the warranty on the defective American Standard parts again.

  11. #206
    DIY Junior Member miracj's Avatar
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    Hi Terry,

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    I sell the Bone Toto Dalton comfort height for $202
    The Bone Toto Drake RF for $279
    Unless I'm mistaken, a Dalton is 1.6 gallons, so that is comparing an apple to an orange since I wanted a 1.28 gallon or better.

    The Drake bone, elongated delivered to me (Boston, MA) is about $285 on the internet. I could not find a local dealer that could match anything even close to that (plus I'd pay a 5% tax)

    However, an operational unit is important. A DIY-er needs to be able to return a problem item locally for replacement, otherwise he'd have to pay return shipping (not cheap or easy for toilets). A professional has other options. So it was not practical to return a Drake if a problem did occur.

    Hi Ian,

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Gills View Post
    The Cadet 3 is a well-priced, good toilet that flushes (almost) as well as any Toto I have sat on. And mine came neatly out of the box as well. So it looks like at least two of us have been struck by lighting, eh? And I know there are more that have not had any problems and are pleased.
    I can't compare the two as I can't say I've sat and used many Toto's, but it seems that the Cadet 3 Flowise has more than met my needs for non-clogging and water consumption (and wife's needs for bone color).

    And it always interesting in forums that you hear way more complaints than praises, so the results are skewed by the # of users of something. I suspect American Standard probably sells a whole lot more units than Toto (at least in the USA) and looking at forum comments is not statistically useful to indicate quality. Nevertheless, I always check forums, comments and reviews before a big or important purchase, looking for the negatives to see what problems or issues one might potentially run into. The trick is to weigh those comments as
    1. being valid,
    2. being typical vs rare, and
    3. being important and relevant to your purchase

    And struck by lightning? If someone wants to stand on a golf course with a metal iron club in your hand during a thunderstorm, go ahead I prefer to make my own luck by researching my purchases!

  12. #207
    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    Personal experience is what I go by, not reading posts from Ian every few posts.


    Cadet with Korky replacement fill valve and Korky replacement flapper.
    The same parts a Toto would use.
    Also, replacement trip lever.


    Cadet with replacement Toto Softclose seat.

    I realize that Ian's Cadet had the trip lever replaced, the flapper, the fill valve and he put on a Toto Softclose seat.
    This is your second valid example?

    So when Ian says it's like sitting on a Toto, it's the Toto seat that he put on his A/S

    I sell a few thousand toilets a year, and many plumbers also notice the quality problems with American Standard.
    It's not made up.
    When I meet other plumbers at the whole sale supply house, I they feel the same way.
    Too many times they have been bitten by the defect bug, and had to spend time replacing bad bowls and tanks.
    Really, I think purchasing a few thousand products a year trumps the two purchases from you two guys.
    Especially since Ian has replaced every part on his already.
    What part of that do you not get?
    There are a lot of happy HD buyers that don't mind chipped porcelain.
    But when a plumber sells you shit like that, the homeowner gets a lot pickier.

    A second point is that your state requires you to pay sales tax on all purchases, even those shipped in.
    By not reporting the sales tax to your local state, it doesn't make you smart.
    It makes you a criminal.

    Quality,
    Have you ever seen the lumber sold at big box.
    I wouldn't use it to make a dog house.
    I'm sure you thing that stuff is good too.
    Homeowner grade is what they call it.

    Big box also carries their own line of faucets with more metal taken out and replace with plastic.
    The plumbers know that, that's why we won't buy the junk they sell.
    They kind of look the same, but they are made cheaper.
    Look at the Moen web site, they have two number systems,
    One for dummies that are too dumb to notice.
    And one for people that want it right the first time.
    Last edited by Terry; 08-15-2009 at 10:02 AM.

  13. #208
    DIY Junior Member miracj's Avatar
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    Hi Terry,

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    Personal experience is what I go by, not reading posts from Ian every few posts.
    Not doubting that in the least. I always look at many independent "Intelligent" reviews and opinions (leaves CR out I guess ). And if a plumber, I would never risk a callback or issue. It's not worth it. A DIY-er, has a different perspective. Recourse if he has a problem, available local parts, long-term availability of parts, etc.

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    I realize that Ian's Cadet had the trip lever replaced, the flapper, the fill valve and he put on a Toto Softclose seat.
    This is your second valid example?

    So when Ian says it's like sitting on a Toto, it's the Toto seat that he put on his A/S
    Based on failures reported on the flapper, I based my total cost on including a replacement Korky flapper. Trip lever and softclose seat (no matter the brand) are a user choice that Ian made. But it doesn't imply the reliability of his Cadet 3.

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    Really, I think purchasing a few thousand products a year trumps the two purchases from you two guys.
    Absolutely for a plumber, or for someone who sell fixtures. A DIY-er has slightly different needs and requirements.

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    Especially since Ian has replaced every part on his already.

    What part of that do you not get?
    That's a bit unfair to Ian, as they are not operational or reliability issues (except possibly the flapper which may have already been addressed in it's current design)

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    There are a lot of happy HD buyers that don't mind chipped porcelain.
    But when a plumber sells you shit like that, the homeowner gets a lot pickier.
    I wouldn't accept it from either a plumber or HD.

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    A second point is that your state requires you to pay sales tax on all purchases, even those shipped in.
    By not reporting the sales tax to your local state, it doesn't make you smart.
    It makes you a criminal.
    Reality says that almost all people buying things over the internet or in NH (which is tax-free) don't pay the sales tax, although they are expected to pay the difference from state tax in what's called a use tax. I can't imagine 99.99% of the people buying their DVDs, CDs, Games, Videos ad-infinitum on Amazon or anywhere else on the web or by mail-order ever actually paying this tax, so the comparison still holds. Even if you add the $15 sales tax to the web orders, they were still close to $100 lower than local dealers/plumbers.

    Quote Originally Posted by Terry View Post
    Big box also carries their own line of faucets with more metal taken out and replace with plastic.
    And that is absolutely true! When I buy at a big-box store, I am real careful when I see model numbers that are not identical to the manufacturer's numbers. This definitely hold's true for lawn mowers, snow blowers and many other items. Sometimes it's doesn't include certain accessories, e.g. a toilet seat (thus costing another $10 to $60). Caveat-Emptor.

    I always make sure if I know what I'm really buying and weigh the applicability to the use, final cost and reliability. Of course, not everyone does their homework either.

    The Toto line is clearly a quality toilet, and anyone who did not consider them wouldn't be very smart. But the final costs, at least in my part of the country, were not in my budget.

    Regards,

    Ira


    The black rubber on the Cadet 3 Flapper starts to blister, this one is six months old.
    Last edited by Terry; 08-21-2009 at 06:02 AM.

  14. #209
    DIY Member organic_smallhome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by miracj View Post
    Hi Terry,



    Not doubting that in the least. I always look at many independent "Intelligent" reviews and opinions (leaves CR out I guess ). And if a plumber, I would never risk a callback or issue. It's not worth it. A DIY-er, has a different perspective. Recourse if he has a problem, available local parts, long-term availability of parts, etc.


    Based on failures reported on the flapper, I based my total cost on including a replacement Korky flapper. Trip lever and softclose seat (no matter the brand) are a user choice that Ian made. But it doesn't imply the reliability of his Cadet 3.



    Absolutely for a plumber, or for someone who sell fixtures. A DIY-er has slightly different needs and requirements.



    That's a bit unfair to Ian, as they are not operational or reliability issues (except possibly the flapper which may have already been addressed in it's current design)



    I wouldn't accept it from either a plumber or HD.



    Reality says that almost all people buying things over the internet or in NH (which is tax-free) don't pay the sales tax, although they are expected to pay the difference from state tax in what's called a use tax. I can't imagine 99.99% of the people buying their DVDs, CDs, Games, Videos ad-infinitum on Amazon or anywhere else on the web or by mail-order ever actually paying this tax, so the comparison still holds. Even if you add the $15 sales tax to the web orders, they were still close to $100 lower than local dealers/plumbers.



    And that is absolutely true! When I buy at a big-box store, I am real careful when I see model numbers that are not identical to the manufacturer's numbers. This definitely hold's true for lawn mowers, snow blowers and many other items. Sometimes it's doesn't include certain accessories, e.g. a toilet seat (thus costing another $10 to $60). Caveat-Emptor.

    I always make sure if I know what I'm really buying and weigh the applicability to the use, final cost and reliability. Of course, not everyone does their homework either.

    The Toto line is clearly a quality toilet, and anyone who did not consider them wouldn't be very smart. But the final costs, at least in my part of the country, were not in my budget.

    Regards,

    Ira
    Hi Ira,

    You might want to check with your plumber. My plumber (I'm in a suburb of Boston) told me that his fee for the Drake, installed, is $475. That includes purchase of toilet (that he picks up).

    best of luck!

  15. #210
    Senior Robin Hood Guy Ian Gills's Avatar
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    Look, I am just posting in a review section about a toilet I own having spent a few bucks on parts that I did for the love of it.

    Plumbers spend an hour-a-time installing these.

    I have spent three years sitting on one.

    You judge for yourself whether my opinion counts?
    Last edited by Ian Gills; 08-16-2009 at 05:34 AM.

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