Can a budget soft closing toilet seat from Homebase be any good?
Bang!! Slam!! Crash!!
If you’ve ever owned a soft close toilet seat you really don’t notice how effective it’s been until the toilet seat that you are using doesn’t soft close anymore, especially when you have kids. At We Try Anything Towers we had that problem. The soft-close mechanism stopped working properly and it was all loose and very uncomfortable to sit on for an extended period of time – especially when you need that moment to yourself to get away from it all with a newspaper or a good book :).
So we decided to look for a good budget option that would be easy to install, hopefully of a fair build quality and above all quiet when closing. With this in mind, we thought that with what we purchase, install and use it would be worth sharing our thoughts on what it is like and if it is any good after a period of use.
The toilet seat that we went with was one purchased from our local Homebase DIY store. Now Homebase we would normally associate with not being the cheapest option out there but they seem to have undergone a bit of a price transformation since they have been bought out by Australian firm Wesfarmers and for some of our DIY supplies we have found them quite competitive.
The seat we chose, for its pocket-friendly price point, was the Duroplast Soft Closing White Toilet Seat from Mondella. At the time of purchase, it was around the £13 mark which we felt wasn’t too bad considering most soft closing toilet seats were around the £25 mark. It also had a few benefits which also made the purchase decision a lot easier and that was that it had claimed to be easy to install, adjustable to fit most standard toilets and it contained an antibacterial preservative that would hopefully help keep the toilet seat as sanitary as possible, though we are not sure how it works we thought it was a nice benefit to have.
Was the installation easy?
If you watch the accompanying video (above) you will see how the installation process went. In a nutshell, it was fairly easy especially if you have limited DIY skills. Everything seemed to slot into place ok, once the instructions were followed correctly and the materials used seemed ok and fairly robust but time will only tell in that department.
As an aside the screws that were included to keep the toilet seat fixed to the basin part of the actual were made of plastic and we can only imagine that it must be so that there is no rust down the line which was something that the old toilet seat screws were showing signs of.
EDIT UPDATE: From a few comments that we have read about this seat, the parts being plastic may be a negative as some people have experienced issues with the plastic parts breaking after a while, though we haven’t experienced anything like this we do say that you get what you pay for and if your toilet seat is going to get more rigorous use then it may be worth paying more for a better seat.
Is it any good?
Compared to the older soft closing toilet seat which fell apart at the back only after a short time and cost a lot more than the one reviewed here we would say that for what you are paying for this seat then it is a worthwhile consideration.
Don’t expect it to be the best soft closing toilet out there but it does close fairly softly most of the time and it is comfortable to sit on. The other thing is that it has been installed now for at least six weeks and it is still going strong, especially through the summer holidays with two very active kids using it every day. There is nothing coming away and the mechanism still works well.
The only thing that we found was that sometimes the lid doesn’t stay upright when you first open it, we’re not sure if that is down to the mechanism trying to catch up with the motion of the lid opening or if it was the way it was installed but we found that if you hold it open for a few seconds more then it stays upright no problem. Also, just one other thing, while we are talking about the few issues we had, was that depending on how you closed the seat then it doesn’t always close as smooth as it should and can close quite quickly which would lead to the lid making noise on contact with the seat but as it is quite light then the noise it makes isn’t really that loud.
Verdict – Six months on…
At the time of writing this review, we said, “If you are on a budget then this is a seat worth considering. It’s fairly robust, of a fair quality and with the parts, we could see, being plastic there should hopefully be no rust as time passes by. If you are after something a bit more then you may need to look at something a bit more than what is reviewed here but for the price point and what you get for the money then we would say that it is a great option worth considering.”
EDIT UPDATE: Six months on from installing and using this toilet seat and we have had a few problems with it. Typically what was the selling point of this seat is its soft closing feature and it doesn’t really soft-close anymore and when we are trying to keep the lid in the upright position you have to hold it for a while to keep it there. The rest of the toilet seat is still ok and our seat hasn’t come apart in any other way but what we will say as we have mentioned earlier is that you do get what you pay for and you may be better off buying something a little more expensive to obtain that more robust soft closing quality.