Round Vs Elongated Toilet Seats: What’s The Difference?

Despite the obvious difference in shape, what are the other things that set round and elongated toilet seats apart?

That is today’s question that is about to be answered in a simple yet informative manner.

Round vs Elongated Toilet Seats: What’s the Difference?

The toilet that you chose directly affects your experience on it.

That’s right, if you want to enjoy your experience on the toilet each day, you will want to make sure that you pick a winner from the start.

This article will present you with the facts and stats that surround round and elongated toilet seats.

In turn, it will be a helping hand in you finding your perfect toilet seat and sitting on it.

Why Is The Right Toilet Seat Important?

The toilet may not be the most flattering feature of the home, but by and gosh is it the most important.

Without a functioning toilet, our homes, simply put, won’t feel like home.

Going to the toilet is a very private affair, so it is always nice to know that you can come home from wherever you have been to a toilet that you can trust. Fitting the right toilet seat is a big part of that trust. 

Another reason why the right toilet seat is important is that you want it to look aesthetically pleasing.

You want a toilet seat that matches the shape of your toilet just as much as you want it to fit into your bathroom’s design and decor.

Last but certainly not least, let’s face it, ill-fitting toilet seats are hot spots for germs.

Finding the right toilet seat will ensure your toilet is a safe and healthy environment for the whole family. 

How Do Round And Elongated Toilet Seats Differ?

There is no such thing as a “one seat to fit all toilets” approach to sizing up toilet seats.

In saying that, here in the U.S there are two standard toilet shapes that subsequently equate to two standard toilet seat sizes.

These standard toilet shapes are known in the industry as elongated and round.

To figure out which type of toilet you have we will highlight exactly what an elongated and round toilet represents so that no mistakes are made. 

What Is An Elongated Toilet Seat?

An elongated toilet seat is exactly that, it’s elongated. Elongated toilet seats are not thinner in width, they are longer in length.

This extra length makes them a great option for particularly tall and large people who require a bigger toilet seat.

As a result of elongated toilet seats suiting tall people as well as shorter people, they are the most common toilet seat type for public toilets and businesses.

Most hotel, airport, and shopping mall toilets will be elongated for this reason. 

However, just because they are the preferred choice for public and business toilets, they are a popular choice for the home as well.

If you have a husband and growing boys, fitting your home with an elongated toilet is a clever idea as it will minimize the chances of them missing the toilet bowl.

Size-wise, elongated toilet seats, in general, measure up to 18.5 inches long and 14 inches wide.

What Is A Round Toilet Seat?

Round toilet seats are most commonly fitted in the home environment.

This is because, as a general rule of thumb, most homeowners tend to prefer extra bathroom space instead of a larger toilet.

Unlike their more elongated counterpart, round toilets are stubby in shape, with their length being not a whole great dealer longer than their width.

You will find that the majority of round toilet seats come in at 16.5 inches in length and 14 inches in width.

This reduced length means they can fit into tighter toilet-specific spaces and rooms which is another reason why they suit the home environment best.

It is rare to find a round toilet in a public set of toilets, but it does happen.

Also, another thing to consider is their reduced size means they are often a little bit cheaper than the elongated toilet seat variety.

Unless you are fitting a new toilet in your home, your decision as to which toilet seat to look for has already been answered.

Why? Because it is not recommended to fit an elongated toilet seat to a round toilet and vice versa.

The toilet that you have dictates the toilet seats you can shop for. The key here is to know, for sure, which toilet seat you need.

Round vs Elongated Toilet Seats: What’s the Difference?

What Are The Pros Of Round Toilet Seats?

Now that you know exactly what is meant by a round toilet seat, it’s time to find out what makes them shine.

Round toilet seats, in general, are the less expensive toilet seat type.

As a general rule of thumb, it has been suggested that round toilet seats are in fact roughly 20 percent cheaper than the elongated variety. 

Another benefit of selecting a round toilet seat is they are the traditional option.

For this reason, they tend to suit a wider variety of home and bathroom designs when compared to the more contemporary feels of an elongated seat.

However, as we previously hinted at, it is their ability to fit tight and confined toilet and bathrooms that makes them still a popular option today.

Also, if you have children, they will find it an easier task to use a round toilet seat than an elongated one.

This ease of use can be put down to their compact size making it easier for kids to sit on. 

What Are The Cons Of Round Toilet Seats?

As with most things in life, round toilet seats come with their good points and they come with some bad ones – nothing is perfect.

Probably the worst aspect of a round toilet seat, when compared to elongated ones, is its comfort level.

Kids aside, round toilet seats are generally less comfortable for adults.

Their questionable comfort rises the taller a person gets as well.

The other point to consider is that round toilet seats are less suitable for people with mobility issues too.

For this reason, they are not the preferred choice of a toilet for many modern homes. 

What Are The Pros Of Elongated Toilet Seats?

Elongated toilet seats are fast becoming the standard toilet type, both in the public arena and the modern home.

The biggest reason for this is that elongated toilet seats are the more comfortable option for people to sit down on.

It is suggested that most adults tend to find elongated toilet seats offer a more pleasurable sitting experience.

This is exasperated for people with mobility issues.

People who struggle to use the toilet on the best of days certainly appreciate a larger toilet and toilet seat – elongated seats give them this.

Another way that elongated toilet seats outshine their more round counterparts is reducing the chance of men standing and making a mess, which we are sure everyone can get on board with.

From a purely aesthetic point of view, elongated toilet seats are the more contemporary choice, meaning they will suit a home that has been recently renovated better.

What Are The Cons Of Elongated Toilet Seats?

The fact that they are a little longer, and a little larger than round toilet seats means it doesn’t take a stretch of the imagination to assume that elongated toilet seats are also more expensive.

For this reason, anyone on a tight budget may prefer to go down the traditional route and purchase a round toilet seat instead.

Even if you have got the money to burn, if your toilet room or bathroom is tight, getting an elongated toilet just doesn’t make sense.

There would be nothing worse than feeling squished in your toilet room because your toilet is out of proportion to the rest of the room.

The last thing to consider is the fact they are more comfortable for adults is the exact reason why they are less than ideal for kids and especially toddlers.

So, if you have a young family, it might make sense to get a round toilet until your kids are grown-up enough to comfortably benefit from an elongated toilet.


Whether you go down the round or elongated toilet seat route matters little.

What does matter is that you find the right toilet seat that makes sense for you, your family, and your situation (Curious about material? Check out our guide to wood VS plastic seats)?

We hope very much this article has steered you in the right direction.

Adrienne Carrie Hubbard
Latest posts by Adrienne Carrie Hubbard (see all)