In today’s bidet toilet seat marketplace, one can find a variety of materials being used for the construction of the wash nozzles. These include plastic, aluminum coated plastic, stainless steel coated plastic, and full stainless steel. So which one’s better? In terms of usage, there really is no discernable difference in spray quality between the different materials. In terms of hygiene and build quality, bidet toilet seats that utilize a fully stainless steel nozzle are most favorable.
When one sits on a bidet seat and begins to wash, it’s pretty much impossible to figure out what kind of nozzle is spraying you from underneath. The actual “feeling” of the water spray is determined by factors like spray pressure, spray pattern, water temperature, and aeration of the water stream. The material used in the construction of the nozzle really has no discernable effect on the actual water stream itself.
The use of bidet toilet seats over toilet paper provides a huge boost in bathroom hygiene. But, what about the hygiene of the actual bidet toilet seat itself? Does the material of the wash nozzle affect it? All electronic bidet seats utilize self-cleaning nozzles which helps keep them sanitary between uses. The powerful cleaning jet washes away the majority of visible particles and most bidet seat nozzles stay relatively clean over time. So, whether the wash nozzle is plastic, aluminum, or stainless steel, bidet toilet seats are able to keep their nozzles pretty clean.
The added hygiene benefit of stainless steel nozzles over plastic and aluminum is due to its cleanability. Having no pores or cracks to harbor grime and bacteria, stainless steel cleans faster and more completely than other materials like plastic, wood, aluminum, and earthenware. In practical terms, this means that when a bidet seat is cleaning its own nozzles, the cleaning action is more effective when the nozzle is made of stainless steel. When users manually clean the nozzles themselves, stainless steel nozzles will be easier to clean and less prone to scratches or corrosion. This is why we see stainless steel as the most widely accepted surface material in commercial and food handling environments.
When bidet seat manufacturers decide to use stainless steel or aluminum over plastic, they are doing so primarily to demonstrate build quality. Metal construction is generally regarded to be of higher quality than plastic. For this reason, we see most of today’s luxury bidet seats like the Bio Bidet BB-2000, Infinity XLC-3000, and Brondell Swash 1000 using metal nozzles as opposed to plastic. The big exception is with TOTO washlets.
TOTO washlets are the “Rolls Royce” of bidet toilet seats and their products are accepted as the industry standard. TOTO’s top of the line washlets carry $1000 price tags and yet none of them use metal nozzles. TOTO still uses plastic wash nozzles, even on the class leading s350e model. While we can only guess their reasoning, we believe it has to do with the old adage, “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
Plastic nozzles have been the industry standard for over a decade and it’s only within the last few years that metal nozzles have emerged in bidet toilet seat construction. While we agree that stainless steel nozzles certainly sound like a big improvement, we also believe that the nozzle material makes little difference to the end user. They are easier to clean and speak to a higher build quality, but metal nozzles don’t improve the user’s bidet experience over plastic nozzles.