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Seat Up, Seat Down

We get asked this question all of the time:

Should I leave the seat up, or put the seat down?

Sometimes it’s at work, sometimes it’s at home, but our answer (with a few small exceptions) is always the same…

Leave the seat down!

Listen, this isn’t about logic, or statistics, or minimizing global effort or anything other than etiquette and doing what’s right. It’s right to leave the seat down, because women prefer it that way. It’s right to leave the seat down because it’s simply the nice thing to do. Oh, and you know how you say it’s so easy for women to put the seat down before they go? While it’s just as easy for men to put the seat down after they go. You get to pee while standing up. Women don’t, so grant them this one small courtesy!

But what about those exceptions I was talking about? While there’s really only one. If you live alone, and never entertain female company, go ahead and leave the seat up. Otherwise, be a real man and leave it down.

Okay, I lied – maybe there are two exceptions. Rick brings up the case where a toilet is going to be used exclusively by men, even if only temporarily. Say your buddy is having a fantasy football draft, there’s 15 guys in the house, no women, and a ton of beer. There’s going to be a lot of peeing, and a lot of bathroom usage, and not a lot of reason to keep putting the seat down only to have the next guy lift it back up, or even worse, pee all over it.

Finally, Andrew reminds me of the following very important consideration:

I notice that your site has a page about seat position, but fails to take hygiene into account; any bathroom with a toothbrush less than 6 feet (approximately 2 meters) away from the toilet seat should not only have the seat down, but the cover as well. Admittedly, this method isn’t convenient for anybody, as whoever uses it will have to lift something, but otherwise, think about the germs that are mixed into the air and spread to your toothbrush the moment you flush.

This is good advice for anybody flushing a toilet in their home!

Pages about Etiquette at Home and at Work