Finish this sentence, “once you go _______, you never go back.”
It’s true! Once you go BIDET, you never go back. In the United States, you can go through your entire life and never encounter a bidet. Heck, I never encountered a bidet until I moved to Japan in my 30s. And even then, I avoided them when I could until one day, I was forced to face my fears. At first, it was a little intimidating considering all the buttons labeled in kanji, the mechanical sounds, and the stainless steel wand that jets out to shoot water on you. Oh, and let us not forget that there is water running through a toilet seat that is also plugged into an outlet (yes, an outlet is required for the Brondell S1000)! Once I got over my fear of the unknown, I pushed a button labeled in Japanese, and seconds later, was pleasantly surprised. After that beautiful experience, I was sold.
Since then, I have used hundreds of different washlets (what the Japanese call a bidet) while I lived in Japan. At home, I’m the proud owner of two Japanese washlets (Panasonic DL-WH60 and the DL-WE60). For a mid-priced washlet (as of Dec 10, 2017, $450 on amazon. For a limited time, $299 at Costco, then $499) you get a decent amount of premiere features that are found on the best industry brands (Toto and Panasonic). And for that reason, I picked one up from Costco for $299.
The washlet was completely installed in about 20 minutes. I’m not a plumber. I’ve installed two washlets prior to this one, and the first two were installed without the ability to read the instructions, which were written in Japanese. The Brondell S1000 was installed on an American Standard Elongated Champion without a hitch.
When you’ve had your bum on the best the planet has to offer, you really don’t want second best. The things that were immediately noticeable in comparison to my Japanese washlets were:
- The seat and water temperature does not warm as fast. This is not a big deal if you live in a warm climate.
- The seat and water temperature do not get as hot. I’ve come to enjoy the maximum hot setting on my washlets, but some might find it uncomfortable. Not a big deal, but it’s there if I want it.
- The adjustable warm air dryer performs just as well as the expensive models (if you intend to dry your bum only using the air dryer, hell will freeze over before it dries).
- The air deodorizer is not as effective as I’m used to,
- The wash spray seemed noisier than I am used to,
- The width adjustment on the wash spray was just as good, if not better.
THE BOTTOM LINE: The Brondell S1000 is a steal at $299, and a good value at $450. In a household of 5, there have been no complaints. My wife said, “it’s good.” My 4 year old son said “it’s warm.” And the only thing my 5 year old son asked was “how do you open the lid?” It seems like a silly question, but our Japanese washlets will lift the lid when you trip a sensor and then close automatically. But, for less than half the price of our Japanese washlets and with most of our favorite features we will keep it.