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Thread: Is there a Made in USA toilet as good as a Toto?

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    DIY Junior Member Nickelboy's Avatar
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    Default Is there a Made in USA toilet as good as a Toto?

    I try as much as I can to buy US made products from US companies, so as the titles says; Is there a Made in USA toilet as good as a Toto? Of course as good as a TOTO is subjective, but with many reviews on and off this board the Toto's must be pretty darn good. Mansfield seems to be all USA, but they don't seem to have any good reviews. I need to buy something ASAP. Thanks for your comments.

    Nickelboy

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    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    It's a little hard to find product made in the US right now. I sell a lot of the TOTO that is manufactured in Georgia here in the US.
    Typically the:
    Drake II
    Vespin II
    Ultramax
    Ultramax II and what seems to be the other product from TOTO with the "II" after the name.

    I never cared for the Mansfield Alto. That was a builder grade version that I remove a lot.
    Lately around the Seattle area, the new ones seemed to have vanished.
    If you go Mansfield, the Maverick would be fine.
    Stay away from their pressure assist dual flush though. The Chinese EcoFlush doesn't seem to hold up.

    In 2007, Bain Capital bought out three major plumbing companies and consolidated manufacturing, shutting down some US locations. That was American Standard, Crane and Eljer.

    Gerber, which had been a family owned business based out of Chicago was bought by a Chinese company, and that manufacturing went overseas.

    Kohler makes some product in the US too, as well as some imports.

    http://www.terrylove.com/forums/show...-United-States
    Last edited by Terry; 08-08-2012 at 02:13 PM.

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    DIY Senior Member wjcandee's Avatar
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    Toto does do a good bit of manufacturing in the US in Georgia, as Terry says. For me, it's good enough that they manufacture a good percentage of their stuff here. As a global company, I always thought that it was cool that they chose to buy some of the in-tank components from Korky/Lavelle, which manufactures all its parts in Wisconsin. Now, however, Toto uses the Korky fill valve in some toilets and a foreign-made fill valve in others (although all the toilets will accept the American-made fill valve as a replacement). On one of Toto's increasingly-popular toilets, the Aquia dual-flush, Korky is the exclusive manufacturer of the fill valve, and they make it here in the US.

    I bought two regular (G-Max) Drakes (as opposed to the increasingly-popular Drake II with the Dual-Cyclone). As a two-piece toilet, the Drake therefore comes in two boxes. As one of Toto's most popular (and most affordable) toilets, it is made in a number of their facilities. I ended up with one American tank and one foreign, and (I think) one American bowl and one foreign (or it could be two foreign bowls). The American tank came with the foreign fill valve, and the foreign tank came with the American fill valve. The American tank has Made in USA molded into it. I have since replaced the foreign fill valve with the American one, which is readily-available locally.

    One other nice thing, for what it is worth, is that American-made Korky parts (i.e. fill valve and flapper) are available for this toilet at a number of the big-box chains for when they need replacement.

    Hope this helps your decision.

    PS One other thought. If you go with the Drake, for example, and you get it at a local plumbing supply house, and they have a decent stock, they may let you ask them to pull the boxes for you that say "Made in USA". Or if you are going for say the Drake II, you can ask them to confirm that they have the tank and bowl that is made in the US.
    Last edited by wjcandee; 07-23-2012 at 11:26 AM.

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    DIY Junior Member Nickelboy's Avatar
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    I just can't do it. I know some of you will say some parts are made in the USA, but Toto is still a foreign company. I'm going with the Mansfield Summit 3. Thanks for all comments, advice and especially a great website.

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    In the Trades Gary Swart's Avatar
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    Your concern about buying USA made products is commendable, but you obviously own a computer. You watch TV? You have a camera? You have electrical appliances in your home? Well, where do you suppose they were made? Hope your as sold on your Mansfield if you have a clog in the middle of the night. Just be sure your plunger is made in the USA.

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    DIY Junior Member Nickelboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gary Swart View Post
    Your concern about buying USA made products is commendable but you obviously own a computer. You watch TV? You have a camera? You have electrical appliances in your home? Well, where do you suppose they were made? Hope your as sold on your Mansfield if you have a clog in the middle of the night. Just be sure your plunger is made in the USA.
    It's not commendable if I don't stick to what I believe now is it? Albeit, there are items that are no longer made here in the USA, but I can not control that, now can I? I will ALWAYS buy the USA model of anything first. My Country, My Money and now my Mansfield. It's the right thing for me to do, notice I didn't ask or impose my choice on anybody else.

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    DIY Senior Member wjcandee's Avatar
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    Korky actually does make a pretty nice plunger in Wisconsin.

    For the gentleman, I think there are two issues. The first is, "Where is it made?", which is the one I thought he was concerned about. The reasoning that most people have behind that one is that they want to help keep jobs here by buying things that are made here. Toto's products generally meet that requirement; they are doing more than CraneEljerStandard to actually employ Americans to make product here, and I think they deserve our support.

    The "foreign company" issue is a little difficult. If I start a toilet company in the United States, employ say 5,000 people in administrative positions in Georgia and around the country, and those administrators build a manufacturing infrastructure that employs Americans, does anybody care what country I am a citizen of? If so, does it matter if I am a citizen of one of our strongest allies in the world? If Joe Smith from Utah founded the company and grew it, and then sold it to someone from someplace else who left everything intact, do we care who owns it? It's an issue that quickly becomes a conundrum.

    That said, I love the Korky folks, who do everything in Wisconsin, and do a lot right, particularly as regards customer satisfaction. They are super eager to please; they have even started participating in the comments sections of reviews on retailer web sites to answer questions, solve problems, suggest refunds, etc. If they made a toilet, I would give it serious consideration. But they don't. Of course, the next best thing is to buy the toilet that uses their parts. Just sayin'.

    Interestingly, of course, Mansfield is owned by Corona, a Columbian company. Just like TotoUSA is owned by Toto, a Japanese company.

    Mansfield stamps "many" of its toilets 'Made in USA", but not all. They are talking about the China.

    Mansfield uses the Fluidmaster 400A as the fill valve on many of its toilets. The 400A is MADE IN MEXICO. And, of course, the heinous WDI Eco-Flush is Made in China.


    So...if the gentleman wants to stay true to his beliefs, he probably is pretty much in the same place buying Toto as Mansfield.

    Toto: Much china made in USA, mostly USA guts, USA manufacturer owned by Japanese.

    Mansfield: Much china made in USA, much Mexican guts, USA manufacturer owned by Columbians.

    Organizacion CORONA is a Colombian multinational company with more than 129 years of business history. It consists of eight strategic business units dedicated to the manufacturing and marketing of home improvement and construction products. It has 17 manufacturing plants in Colombia and two in the US, as well as a global supply office in China, a tile and electrical insulator commercialization company in the U.S. and another commercialization company in Mexico.
    Last edited by Terry; 07-30-2012 at 03:50 PM.

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    DIY Senior Member JerryR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nickelboy View Post
    I just can't do it. I know some of you will say some parts are made in the USA, but Toto is still a foreign company. I'm going with the Mansfield Summit 3. Thanks for all comments, advice and especially a great website.
    Just last week i had a long conversation with a friend in Michigan. He had a plastics manufacturing business that supplied parts mainly for US auto makers. A few years ago his business dropped off to nothing as US auto companies went overseas for plastic stuff. He lost over a million dollars when he sold his business.

    Today he drives a Honda Accord because it's made in US and has 85% US parts. He was going to buy a Chevy but it was only 67% US parts. The Accord now has 250,000 miles on it.

    I take an elderly friend to lunch twice a week. Every time he gets into my Lexus he tells me that they bombed Pearl Harbor. He drives a Volvo. Guess where the ball bearings were manufactured for the German Aircraft during WW2?

    My Toto drake was manufactured 1/2 in US and 1/2 in Vietnam. I spent 12 long months in vietnam in 1968.

    I retired from a high tech US fortune 500 company. By the time I left NONE of the manufacturing was done in the US.

    We are a global economy.
    JR

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    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    Guess where the ball bearings were manufactured for the German Aircraft during WW2?
    Answer: They were made in Schweinfurt, Germany where thousands of Americans lost their legs or lives trying to bomb the plants. I have been there. Incredibly, my Army brother lived there during the Vietnam war because of his tech degree, aiming Hawk missiles at the soon to visit Russians. What is breath-taking is how these bright and meticulous people could have built human death factories - on the surface, its the most civilized country on earth. Stop in at Auswitzch in the winter if you want to come home and kiss the ground. My wife acted in the movie Schindlers list, and nearly had a breakdown.

    Anyway.... I suppose BEFORE the war, the Germans imported bearings from wherever they could get them. They also Mfg'd. some in Czechoslovakia in underground plants.

    I met a OLD woman near a village in Kiev, Ukraine. She was a slave worker for the Nazi's - near the wars end, she hid a downed American pilot in the forest and fed him daily. When the war ended he gave her his watch and rings and all his money, and a jacket, then she walked the 1000 miles or so home. I was the first American she saw since him and I never had so many kisses in my life. She had a fine toilet just outside the door that required no flush valve or water.

    I think our main problem in America is the folks that survived the depression are long dead, and no American ever walked a few thousand miles in the winter, eating rotten potatoes and frozen turnips, with all the towns still smouldering brick piles.

    Spa's, 60" tv's, Bidets, are softening us up.

    As to plastic MFG'g - I would NOT worry. Its the third largest industry in the US and employs 900 thousand people. Now with our 'free' natural gas, you'll see even more. I want to see a plastic TOILET - just imagine the advantages..... And the perfectly formed and smooth trapways you could create.

    http://www.plasticsindustry.org/abou...temNumber=1008
    Last edited by ballvalve; 08-17-2012 at 01:15 PM.

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    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    Delta made a one-piece plastic toilet in the 70's. The shop I worked for had a red one on display. It was feather light. We never installed it, and I don't think we sold any either. It felt kind of flimsy.
    I've never felt good about plastic chairs either. There are a few more expensive and more solid ones out there. One thing I like when sitting, is something that doesn't move around underneath me. Unless it was made to be a rocker.

    What is breath-taking is how these bright and meticulous people could have built human death factories - on the surface, its the most civilized country on earth.
    That has surprised me too. Frankly I'm stunned by it. It was never logical. If you leave politics out of it, we would be the best of friends.
    Last edited by Terry; 09-05-2013 at 02:50 PM.

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    Brand New Plumber GoKohlerGo's Avatar
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    To get a toilet as good as toto that is made in the USA, buy the Kohler Cimarron. I have one and love it.

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    God bless you. I got to be honest, I got one of those, and I want to drop kick it out the bath window. I am sure, Kohler makes good products as well, as Toto, but, surely, you jest about the Cimarron. I got it working pretty good now, after 7 years of tweaking it. Everyone asks me what I want for Xmas, and everyone thinks I am kidding, when I say, " a new toilet."

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    DIY Senior Member wjcandee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoKohlerGo View Post
    To get a toilet as good as toto that is made in the USA, buy the Kohler Cimarron. I have one and love it.
    Pretty sure that Cimarron is not made in the USA.

  14. #14

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    I don't know who made that toilet, but, it requires a whole lot of patience. lol. I want to buy the toilet that Ed Bundy uses on the ole' show, Married with Children, now, he never had a problem.

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    General Engineering Contractor ballvalve's Avatar
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    American standard 3 - now MADE IN THE USA - have a click and be amazed!

    http://www.americanstandard-us.com/p...s/made-in-usa/

    As I mentioned, with the cost of natural gas, You'll see more patriots take a profit at home, and have workers with money enough to BUY american. As Ian said many times, "thats the best little toilet on earth. Flush an elephant turd, mate."

    As to the Cimarron, I found a story online where the union refused a thousand on a huge job, because they were made in china or mexico, and next week received fresh american made ones. So I guess they send the imports to the home stores, and save the us ones for the buy american act.

    People that care about getting America back on its feet, will live with a chinese plunger next to their US Mansfield. Or go ahead and buy the US Toto, just remember the profits leave the country.

    http://www.mansfieldplumbing.com/Why...de-In-USA.aspx

    And here are 10 pages of US made mansfield products, so yes, you have choices.

    http://www.mansfieldplumbing.com/Pro...A.aspx?page=10

    Here is the best reason to seek US made products - so your kid does not end up at MCburgers or the dollar depression store:

    Name:  Rish and the flag.jpg
Views: 446
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    Last edited by ballvalve; 08-15-2012 at 11:49 AM.

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