(e) In the matter of complication of arrangement for the simultaneous opening of the closet and cistern valves through levers, cranks and wires, the valve and pan closets are evidently equally defective.
(f) When the water-closet is used as a slop hopper, and a large volume of water is suddenly emptied in the bowl the obstruction occasioned by the valve to the outflow of' the water is likely to cause spattering, while the pan, on the contrary, though it forms an obstruction, allows the water to escape in a measure as it is poured in, and the danger of spattering and overflowing is thereby somewhat diminished. The valve closet overflow affords less of a security in this respect. Hence, here again the valve closet loses in comparison with the pan. When, as often happens, the valve is suddenly closed at the moment the waste matters are passing out, and catches these matters, it presses them against the valve-seat, whence they can never be removed by flushing, but remain to decompose until they are scraped off with great difficulty. The same objection holds with the pan closet, but such an obstruction on the valve causes it to leak, and as soon as the water has escaped from the bowl the odor of the adhering matters becomes intolerable. Thus once more superiority must be granted to the principle of the pan closet over the valve.
The form of the valve closet is (a) complicated by the overflow not required in the pan closet. In other respects, the machinery of the closets is similar and all this complication unnecessary in closets. (b) The trap and receiver are invisible and inaccessible from the outside, like those in the pan closet. (c) As is the case with the pan, there is nothing in the mechanism of the valve closet to provide against the loss of its water seal through evaporation, siphonage, etc. It has been proposed to ventilate the receiver with a special vent pipe to carry off the odors generated therein and protect the trap below from being unsealed by the momentum of the water discharged by the valve. But a single pipe would not be sufficient, because an exhaust as well as a supply pipe would be necessary to create a movement or change of air, and this would add enormously to the expense. Were there no receiver these two pipes would not be required. (e) The valve closet is equally defective with the pan in requiring a frame around the closet to protect it and receive the weight of the seat. (f) The valve mechanism is more complicated in construction than the pan. It requires a very carefully turned seat and a rubber packing which is very perishable. Hence repairs are necessary even oftener than with an equally well made pan closet.
The cost of manufacture is evidently considerably greater than that of the pan closet, on account of the overflow and of the principle of the valve, which requires both greater strength and delicacy of form and adjustment. It is correspondingly more liable to get out of order, and hence is more expensive to keep in repair.
Thus we find in the valve closet every defect of the pan and at the same time others which are peculiar to itself. Both have their hidden "chamber of horrors," which exhale noisome odors into the house at all times, and more particularly when their machinery is operated. The cesspools become perpetual automatic gas retorts and defeat their own object of removing all organic decomposition immediately from the premises.
The Plunger Closet.
Plunger closets are those which have the outlet closed by a plunger or plug fitting over or into it, and held in place by its own weight.
Figs. 387 to 391, inclusive, represent plunger closets having a solid plunger, the overflow passage being in the rear behind the plunger.
Fig. 392 is a hollow plunger closet, the overflow being through the plunger itself. This is the simplest form of plunger closet, but it allows effluvium from matters which may be left floating in the trap to escape into the room through the plunger and around its handle.
Figs. 389 and 390 show a plunger closet having its overflow trapped with a plunger or valve. It is the only plunger closet except the Jennings which has a mechanical seal for the overflow, and the only closet in which the overflow cannot be destroyed by siphonage. The complication arising from the mechanical trapping of the overflow and the enormous size of the receiver form serious objections to this form of closet. Were there no better and simpler mode, however, of preventing the action of siphoning in waterclosets, it would stand high in spite of the inherent defects of its class.
Fig. 387. Plunger Closet.
Fig. 388. Plunger Closet.
Figs. 389, 390 and 391 represent the class of plunger closets which has a chamber or cistern for the supply cock and regulating float connected with the plunger chamber. This form of closet is very objectionable. The float chamber becomes foul like the plunger chamber, and the two chambers together then form a species of cesspool even worse than that of the pan closet.
The above may be considered types of all known plunger closets. Some are made without water traps under the plunger, but these, like trapless valve closets, are totally unreliable. In regard to
We find here a much larger extent of surface of receiver which never receives a scouring of water than in the valve closet. The flushing stream passes under the plunger receiver, and not through it, as it does through the valve receiver. The plunger receiver must also from its nature be larger than that which is sufficient for the valve.
Fig. 389. Plunger Closet.
Fig. 390. Plunger Closet.
Fig. 391. Plunger Closet.
These two circumstances render it much more easily fouled.
To operate the machinery of a plunger closet requires still more of an effort than is the case with the valve, because the dead weight of the plunger has to be lifted direct without the aid of the leverage of the crank which is employed with the valve. The weight of the plunger must be sufficient to retain the water in the bowl by its pressure against its seat.
In all other respects the flushing of the plunger closet is attended with precisely the same defects as that of the valve closet.
The same criticisms which are applicable to the valve closet in relation to its form, material, construction and cost apply with equal force to the plunger closet, and the same
Fig. 392. Plunger Closet.
Deductions may be made in its comparison with the common pan closet, i. e., it is superior to the ordinary flimsily made pan closet, but greatly inferior to its most improved and solid construction, and, in general, it is inferior to the pan closet in the principle of its construction and operation.