Where would we be without plumbing? Still out in the woods, we’d expect! Yes – while there are still plenty of us out there who have no issue using the great outdoors to relieve ourselves and to wash up – indoor plumbing has vastly improved the human experience. For one thing, it’s helped to keep things more sanitary over the years! Take a look below for 14 awesome and amazing facts about plumbing.
1. The word plumbing derives from plumbum, which refers to the lead used in manufacturing. This Latin word even gives itself to the name that lead possesses in the periodic table – Pb.
2. It’s thought that to save more water, all we need to do is start setting up toilets which flush slower! There are slow flushing toilets and WCs which will save a potential of 18,000 gallons of water each year! In fact, you’ll save 3,000 more by making sure your taps don’t leak.
3. Some of the most famous people have worked in plumbing – Super Mario, of course, is perhaps the most iconic plumber on the planet – but did you know that rocker Ozzy Osbourne traded as a plumber before finding fame with Black Sabbath?
4. In fact, Mario hasn’t really done much plumbing since his world debut in the early 80s. He was actually a carpenter called Jumpman when he first started emerging in arcades alongside Donkey Kong.
5. Flushing toilets have existed since the 16th century, and it’s thanks to the genius of John Harrington. Weirdly enough, it’s Harrington who gave us the nickname ‘The John’. It wasn’t until 1775, however, when Alexander Cummings first patented the modern flushing toilet. Well – modern in those days, in any case.
6. When is the most common time of year to flush the toilet? During the Super Bowl in the US – as you can generally expect millions to go to the toilet during the same breaks in programming. It’s similar to the statistic that people used to boil kettles on mass during breaks in ‘Coronation Street’!
7. Weirdly enough, legendary genius Albert Einstein once stated that he would have loved to have been a plumber.
8. It’s thought that you’ll spend an average of around three years on the toilet. Life is for living – get off your phone and get experiencing it!
9. What uses more water – a bath, or a shower? You’d be surprised – if you run a shower for more than eight minutes, you’ll be using more water than you’d normally need to fill a standard household bathtub.
10. Plumbing dates back millennia – well, not that which we have in place these days! It’s thought that plumbing was a trade and a facility heading all the way back to 4,000 BC. The Ancient Egyptians are thought to have had some form of water pipes in place. What was the excuse for using streets as toilets in England during the Dark Ages?
11. Weirdly enough, Japan has a strangely high bath-related death rate. It’s thought that you are almost 70 times more likely to die in a bathtub out east than you are in the UK.
12. Why are manhole covers circular? It’s all to do with protecting them from falling in. A circular lid is never going to fall down its own hole if it’s flipped sideways.
13. The word ‘privy’, still sometimes used to describe toilets in some circles, derives from the term ‘the house of privacy’, which dates back to Tudor times. It’s a little more kind than the term the Ancient Egyptians used – ‘the house of horrors’!
14. South Korea seems to take toilet fascination further than most nations – to the point where they have their own toilet-themed attractions at a leisure park! This theme park stands as a result of it once being home to Sim Jae-duck – who oversaw the World Toilet Association.