Ask a plumber

Looking for the ‘right’ flushing toilet

This Wellworth two-piece elongated dual-flush from Kohler comes in a right-side flush option.
This Wellworth two-piece elongated dual-flush from Kohler comes in a right-side flush option.
HANDOUT / Kohler

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

Q: Our toilet is in the corner of our bathroom very close to a wall on the left hand side of the toilet. I have always been frustrated that the flushing handle is on the left side of the toilet, in a tight spot next to that wall. We’re planning to replace this toilet. Can I get a new toilet with the flushing handle on the right side of the toilet?

Patty, Connecticut

A: This is a great question that many people don’t even think about since left handle toilets are the industry standard.

When you do think about it, you may wonder why most toilet handles are on the left side anyway. It would make perfect sense to have the toilet handle on the right side, since most people are right handed. Well, that would be true if we all stood facing the toilet. But in most cases people are sitting down on the toilet, so now the left side handle is easier to reach with your right hand. Once again, not fair for left handers.

However, in many commercial restrooms you can find toilet handles on the right side of the tank for easier public access.

With all that said, the good news is that you can special order new toilets with a right-side flushing handle and that can solve your issue.

Final tip: Order a spare right side handle with your new toilet or you could be out in left field if you ever need a replacement part.

Master contractor and plumber Ed Del Grande is the author of the book “Ed Del Grande’s House Call” and the host of TV and Internet shows. Visit or write

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