Different Toilet Seat Shapes and Sizes

Toilet seats come in a variety of shapes and sizes to suit different user needs and styles. They are designed to fit compact, spacious, luxurious, and other interiors without compromising their operations.

Common seat shapes include rounded and elongated toilet seats, with additions of U-shaped, D-shaped and square-shaped seats. The sizes differ in height, width, and other dimensional sizes. There are also customizable seats that cater to more special needs such as for the handicapped.

With these kinds of seat shapes and sizes, you may get confused especially if shopping for a new toilet seat. You may not know which seat does what and which is best for who. Below is a look into these shapes and sizes clearly describing their purpose and use.

Round or “O”

As the name implies, rounded toilet seats give an impression of a true circle. They’re cylindrical and have a bowl length of 16.5 inches. It doesn’t have sharp edges, pointed corners, but instead equal dimensions all round.

They are an excellent choice for small and compact washrooms such as those in commercial spaces like offices.

Round toilet seat
Round toilet seat

They’re also very prevalent as they resonate with the older designs, therefore if you stay in an old house or an old rented apartment, your toilet seat is probably rounded.

They won’t take up much space, especially if the toilet also comes as one piece rather than two.

Aesthetically, they’re beautiful too but lean towards a more traditional or old style. In terms of money, there isn’t much difference, as they are cheaper than the elongated kind. This, therefore, concludes that the rounded toilet seat is best for compact spaces, laid-back designs, and a pocket-friendly choice.

Round Toilet Seat, Dimensions, Pros & Cons

Pointed/ Elongated /Oval/Egg

The elongated toilet seat will have a longer, more pointed front. They’re also gaining popularity in these coming years as people are looking for more comfortable choices for their bathrooms. The elongated toilet seat has a length of 18.5 inches, two inches longer than the rounded design.

Oval/elongated toilet seat shape
Elongated toilet seats

The pointed seat has a contemporary style but can also fit well with a traditional, rustic, or farmhouse feel. They’re loved by many as they offer more comfort in the bathroom.


Well. The elongated toilet allows you to seat more comfortably, it tends to take up a wide surface area than the rounded toilet. Furthermore, the elongated toilet will allow for more space to do your activities.

If you’re a man, you’ll have more seating allowance since your package can easily rest in the toilet unlike the rounded one where you have to hold it to prevent squeezing.

Plus, even for ladies, there’s room for wiping yourself without touching the back of the toilet.

Elongated toilets are a great choice for heavier women, again because of the wider surface area it offers. They have extra support for the thighs and legs in general.

Unfortunately, these pointed toilets have an egg shape which tends to take up more space, even with its smaller width. Nonetheless, it’s a great choice for residential and even commercial spaces.

Open/ U-Shaped

This seat shape is quite popular in public washrooms. They’re generally more hygienic compared to other shapes.

Open or U-shaped toilet seat

The opening in the seat provides the user a little breathing room to ensure that the privates, especially men, do not get in contact with the seat. It also creates a place where urine could splash.

For women, the gap makes it easier for women to wipe without touching the seat.


The square or rectangular-shaped toilet has parallel sides with equal widths and lengths of approximately 17 inches.

Square-shaped toilet seat
Square seat

There’s no doubt that they definitely add a new modern touch to the toilet industry. Some people find the square seats to be more comfortable than traditional round/oval shapes.

They’re angular, stylish, and could fit any space without worry. It’s also good to note that they are more of a minimalist-styled look as they don’t have much detail to it


Another pretty chill toilet seat shape has to be the D-Shape which is very similar to the former shape explained above. It’s contemporary and appears to look flat with edgy hinges.

D shape toilet seat
D-Shape Seat

It’s equally aesthetically pleasing as it adds a punch of modern style to it. It’s not for any specialized reasons but you could get this shape if you’re looking for something unique and forward in terms of style.

Toilet Seat Size

The toilet bowl size is divided into four segments;

  • Width/ diameter
  • Length
  • Height/ depth
  • Rough-in


The size of the bowl at large refers to the diameter/ width of the toilet seat. That’s roughly 20. The width measures from the left edge to the right edge of the toilet bowl.

If you have a one-piece toilet, the tank width is considered, meaning the width could be up to 30 inches.

But for two-piece toilets, the bowl should be 20 inches wide, also depending on the toilet brand. Standard toilets will have an approximate bowl width of 20 inches(51 cm) and a height of 14 to 16 inches, more about that is explained further below.

The width of the bowl will be less for elongated-style toilets and wider for square and rounded toilets.


The length depends on the shape of the bowl either square, oval, rectangle, or round. The length could be anywhere between 15 and 17 inches, while elongated toilets have a length of 18 to 19 inches. The length from the front edge of the toilet to the back is over 30 inches.


As for the height, there are different heights when it comes to the toilet bowl.

The most common types are;

  • Comfort toilets
  • Standard toilets

Comfort Height

These toilets are also referred to as ADA compliant seats or chair height toilets seats. They measure 17 to 19 inches from the ground to the toilet seat, just two to three inches above the standard height toilet seat.

They have become a more prevalent choice because of their versatility, hence the name universal toilet seat.

Comfort height toilet seats are suitable for tall individuals, the elderly, the disabled, and the injured.

They’re ADA compliant hence can be installed in any residual or commercial space and relatively cheaper than the standard height toilet. So, if you fall into this category, this would be the seat for you.

Standard Height

The standard height toilet seat has been a favorable wash set for years. Probably because they have a good height for children and even adults get the advantage of raised feet, which emulate the benefits of a squatty potty in reducing chances of constipation. They measure just 14 to 16 inches from the ground and are the regular type of toilet seat available

If you have children at home, this would be a good choice, plus those who would prefer a low set toilet. However, they’re expensive and quite uncomfortable to sit on as you may have to raise yourself to wipe yourself. The spacing isn’t enough.

Rough-In Measurements

The Rough-In measurements of a toilet refer to the length from the back of the toilet to the center of the drainpipe (at the base of the toilet). For a standard toilet, it measures about 12 inches (30.5 cm).

The distance, however, can range between 10 inches to 14 inches, depending on the type of toilet and the brand.

Factors that Affect the Shape and Size of a Toilet


Depending on the aim of the toilet, the unit can have more length, could be taller, have a shorter or longer rough-in measurement, or wider.

Good examples are ADA toilets that are two inches taller than the standard toilet to cater to handicapped, taller individuals, and the seniors.

Elongated toilets too are best for bigger women while rounded are great for small compact spaces such as offices.


There are standard size toilet dimensions that manufacturers like Toto, American standard, WoodBridge, and Kohler use to make toilets. This means there’s a demand for such and going out of the ordinary wouldn’t benefit them as people wouldn’t buy.

However, demand can rise leading to more manufacturers making more elongated toilets than rounded as the trend is changing, and demand is rising.


As you have read above, D-shaped and square-shaped toilet seats were introduced as luxurious and stylish toilet designs. This affected how the makers made the toilets appear as they do.

The same goes for other designs such as off the wall or wall hung toilets that could be designed differently from other shapes and sizes we are familiar with. Say less height, more width, short rough in sizes, among other dimensional changes.


Many manufacturers are looking to make toilets that have a powerful flush system with less water usage, less noise, and all the other great things.

This means that they had to look into different shapes and sizes that would then affect how water runs in and out of the toilet bowl, among other factors.

Rounded toilets are said to have better flush systems but elongated toilets have less water usage, different designs come into play when optimizing a toilet’s performance.

Final Thought

All these four shapes and sizes of toilet come into play when you’re choosing a good toilet. Remember that each of these seats designed for specific users.

Here’s just a summary for you;

  • For comfort – go for an elongated style toilet that offers a wider surface area and longer seat supports.
  • For limited or compact bathroom spaces – rounded or square-shaped toilet seats take the lead as they’re compact in their make and appearance. Besides, their length is also two inches less than the elongated-style toilet.
  • Best for children – the standard height toilet is a good height to get children to go to the toilet by themselves.
  • Best for seniors – the ADA universal toilet seat would fit anyone tall, old, and injured.

Now with this information, go make the right purchase for your home.

More Ideas on Toilet Seats

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