ANSWERS: 12
  • The quick answer is: no, they all flush downward. But I suspect what you're thinking of is the Coriolis Effect, discovered in 1835 by Gustave-Gaspard Coriolis, which is to do with the effect of the earth's rotation on the path of moving objects. It has relevance to the movement of oceans and weather patterns, but the effect is too small to affect the water involved in flushing a toilet. What governs the direction of a flushing toilet is principally the design of the toilet, since water generally enters the bowl already travelling in one direction or the other.
  • The fun answer is: yes. Otherwise toilets on the other side of the world would spew filthy water all over the place. I assume you mean: "Do toilets flush clockwise or counter-clockwise depending on what hemisphere you are in?" To that, the answer is no. The coriolis effect does impart a small force in the water, but that is insignificant next to the circulation generated when water is pumped into the basin.
  • Well, in my bathroom it's what tap you are using, but for toilets, yes. Northen hemisphere anti-clockwise, Southern hemisphere clockwise
  • Not really. It has a lot more to do with the shape of the basin, the direction/current of the water entering the basin, etc... There is an effect that may have a slight effect on the draining direction in the northern and southern hemispheres (called Coriolis). The truth is, that our sinks, tubs, and toilets would not necessarily be following this pattern. The Coriolis effect is way too weak in a body of water as small as our tub, or sink. It is the design of the basin and the flow of the water that determines that. There are 2 toilets in my house, one drains clockwise, the other counter-clockwise. I am almost positive that the equator does not run between my two bathrooms. lol See these sites for more info: http://math.ucr.edu/home/baez/physics/General/bathtub.html http://www.snopes.com/science/coriolis.htm http://www.ems.psu.edu/~fraser/Bad/BadCoriolis.html http://www.sciam.com/askexpert_question.cfm?articleID=00069EE7-6D24-1C71-9EB7809EC588F2D7
  • No. http://www.snopes.com/science/coriolis.htm
  • I'm afraid I must disagree with Stableboy; Coriolis forces (which determine the direction of tornados) don't operate on small bodies of water. If a toilet does happen to swirl anti-clockwise, this is due entirely to the design of the appliance. See http://www.ems.psu.edu/~fraser/Bad/BadCoriolis.html
  • Ummm...do you mean that the water shoots out rather than being sucked down? If that were to happen, it would be pretty cool. (Of course it would also be pretty messy!) I would have to guess that it probably doesn't happen that way.
  • Ha! Some people took it to mean that the water would shoot up on the other side of the Earth. Very funny. The answer is no. Lisa Simpson was dead wrong. Bart should have won that contest. (Mulder on the X Files made the same mistake. Probably the same writers.) The toilets will rotate in whatever direction the water streams entering the bowl come in. Its angular momentum is more or less preserved (some of it of course is lost by being applied to the surface of the bowl). Coriolis forces, the result of the rotation of the Earth, would come about as a result of one side of the bowl being accelerated in a noticably different direction from the other side. This is true for 500 mile wide hurricaines. But come on! There's no measurable difference from one side of a toilet bowl to the other. The entire bathroom is to any measurable level of precision, all in the same reference frame. There is no measurable effect.
  • I am amazed at the number of people who have missed this one. Drain the water from your tub or kitchen sink, and as the depth is reduced to an inch or two, examine the spin. Can that be explained by the pre-existing direction of the water approaching the drain? No, it cannot. If you want to understand the potential of the Coriolis Effect on small areas of a rotating object, try this. You may have to picture it in your mind unless you have an old phonograph record player, so imagine cutting the shape of a music album from white posterboard and letting it rotate on the player. While it is rotating, take a pencil, and ignoring the rotation draw a line from the edge to the center. The results, of course, will be a spiral. Now stop the spin and draw two dots at different distances from the center, anywhere on the disc. Start the rotation, and ignoring the rotation again, try to draw a line from one dot to the other. The affects can be quite interesting. To make a long story short, the water has the same problem trying to make a bee-line toward the drain. It misses, turns, misses, turns, constantly spiraling toward the drain. Some toilets have a design that dictates the rotation of the flush, but the majority do not. In the northern hemisphere, the flush counter-clockwise just like the spin of draining water in your tub or sink. In the southern hemisphere, drains spin clockwise. This is known from theory, and is observed by many every day.
  • American Standard has a toilet design which clearly overrides any weak rotation effect: https://www.americanstandard-us.com/vormax.html#vormax
  • Yes. below the equator spins opposite as north of the equator. makes you wonder what happens on the equator

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