There's a certain sci-fi fun about using bathrooms that don't require you to touch anything. Toilets magically flush when you stand up. Faucets turn on as your wave your hands. Towels are automatically delivered into your grasp. Germaphobes and tech aficionados alike can bring some of that into their own homes with Kohler's Touchless Flush kit.
The kit can be installed on almost any single-flush toilet. If you have one of those fancy two-flush toilets, you're out of luck for now. You have the option of leaving your old-fashioned flush handle in place, or removing it to go completely touchless. The sensor module mounts underneath the tank lid and runs on four AA batteries.
Here's the official explanation on how it works: "Unlike a beam-based sensor, in which a beam of light is broken to trigger the actuation, the Kohler Touchless flush utilizes emerging sensing technology, which projects an electromagnetic field that is both extremely accurate and reliable. This type of sensor detects the user in the projected field and initiates the flush."
A small waving-hand emblem can be set on top to let visitors know how to flush the toilet and minimize the calls for help coming from the bathroom. The kit costs $99.97.
The retrofit kit was announced Thursday alongside a new line of touchless toilets from Kohler aimed at consumers. The Cimarron Touchless Toilet not only evokes images of the ruggedly beautiful New Mexico high desert, it also evokes images of not having to set fingers on a flusher. It's available in either an elongated bowl (suggested list price of $211.50) or a round bowl (suggested list price of 192.20).
I can see the attraction of having a touchless toilet, though I'm not a germaphobe. I like anything that gives regular household items a little bit of sci-fi sheen.