How long do toilet seats last and how often should you replace them?

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The toilet is a bathroom fixture that can last for decades, but the toilet seat isn’t. You are going to replace it more often, and there is a myriad of options in the market. 

how long do toilet seats last

How long do toilet seats last? Usually, a toilet seat can last for 2 to 10 years. Many factors can affect its lifespan. For example, a plastic unit can last longer than a wooden unit. The more you use it, the sooner it will wear out.

This post will explore how different factors affect the lifespan to estimate how long your toilet seat will last or how often you should replace it.

How long do toilet seats last?  7 factors to know

As I said, the lifespan of a toilet seat is usually between 2 to 10 years. So why can some units last longer than others? There are 7 factors that can affect it.


Generally, there are three types of toilet seats, wood toilet seats, enameled wood toilet seats, and plastic toilet seats. 

The plastic toilet seat is the choice of most modern families. It is affordable, easy to clean, and lightweight. The plastic is resistant to water and other erosion. The white color can lend itself to a more modern feel. However, it can freeze one’s butt off in the winter.

The wood toilet seat could make you feel more comfortable in the winter since it is able to hold a specific temperature. The wooden color can fit better with a more classic look. 

But wooden seats are more susceptible to rot and cracking. They are heavier, which could be a less ideal choice for children.

Check our post about wood vs. plastic toilet seats


More often than not,  you have to replace a toilet seat not because the seat itself is cracked but because the hinges are broken. 

Some units use plastic hinges and parts, and some use metal ones. Usually, metal parts tend to last longer than plastic ones. 

In addition, cheap toilet seats are more likely to use flimsy accessories. You can save some bucks while buying it but will find it breaks suddenly after a few months, which wastes your more money. 

So when you think about how long your toilet seat will last, you should consider the quality of these tiny parts.

Amount of use

A toilet seat is something that will wear out eventually. The more frequently you use it, the shorter it will last. 

Suppose you share the toilet with all your family members. Let’s say 4 people use one toilet every day. Then the seat, the hinge, and other parts will be used about 20 times a day. It will break sooner than the seat in a single apartment.


If your toilet seat is often exposed to sunshine or the bathroom has a high humidity level. Then it will have a shorter lifespan than others. 

The sunshine can make the seat crack easier, and the damp air can rot the wooden seat and the metal accessories. The over humidified environment would also promote the growth of black mold in toilets

So you should place the toilet seat in a proper place if you don’t intend to replace it every so often.


how often should you replace the toilet seat

It is recommended to clean the toilet bowl and toilet seat every day. If not, the urine and other contaminants may leave permanent stains on the seat, which is disgusting and could pose health threats to your family members. 

Nobody wants to sit on a dirty toilet seat, and you will have to dispose of it soon.


How you use the toilet seat plays an important role in determining its lifespan. For example, some males are used to slamming down the toilet seat after using the toilet. Some don’t care about the weight capacity when shopping for a seat, but the seat can’t hold up the user’s weight actually.

These actions can negatively affect your seat. It can break much sooner than you expect. 


Accidents can happen even on a toilet seat. If your child accidentally smashes something heavy on the toilet, it can crack immediately. Many people like to install a shelf around the toilet tank. When the object on the shelf falls onto the seat, your seat is prone to crack.

How often should you replace a toilet seat?

There are 5 signs that indicate that you should replace the toilet seat. 

Loosen toilet seat

If your toilet seat becomes loosened constantly, you may need to replace it now. The hinges and bolts may have worn out. Instead of tightening it a few times a week, you could replace these parts or the whole seat.

Unremovable stains

The urine or mold left on the toilet seat can smell awful and form unremovable stains. It would be embarrassing to have your relatives and guests use such seats. So when you see any noticeable stains on the seat, it is time to replace it.

Move to a new house

When you move to a new place, you may want to replace the toilet seat. The seat in the house may have been used for years, or you don’t want to clean it thoroughly anymore. 

Since toilet seats don’t cost a lot, you can get a new one.

The seat breaks

When the toilet seat is broken, you should replace it as soon as possible. The cracks could become the peri dish for mold, mildew, and bacteria. It would also be possible to hurt you while sitting on it. 

Your children need to do potty training

Kids need a special toilet seat to do potty training. You can either choose a 2-in-1 seat or add an extra toilet seat to your existed one. 


Generally speaking, a toilet seat can last for 2 to 10 years. The materials it is made of, the environment the seat is placed in, how many people use it, and how you use it can extend or shorten its lifespan. 

Also, you should clean it regularly to prevent any permanent stains left on the toilet seat. 

Buying a toilet seat could not cost you a fortune, so you should get one with sturdy hinges or other accessories. Otherwise, it may end its life sooner than you expect.

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Kevin Chow is an enthusiast of home improvement. He is an engineer and likes to test all the tech gadgets on the market. He starts to use bidet seats after his journey to Japan and he had tried a few brands.