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How To Transform Your Ugly HDB BTO Toilet Bowl Into An Atas One For Less Than $30

12 October 2023 | BY

Don’t throw away the toilet that came with your new HDB BTO flat just yet.

hdb diy bto toilet upgrade

The first order of business when moving into a new BTO flat for many homeowners is getting rid of all the default fittings that come pre-installed. This includes the eco-toilet that combines a wash basin with a toilet that many have described as “ugly.”

For the couple behind @ourkozykorner on Instagram, instead of dismissing the eco toilet immediately, they saw it as a diamond in the rough that could be spruced up with just some tender loving care – and some light decor that only cost them less than $30. Here’s how they upgraded the unsightly toilet and even inspired others to do the same.

Didn’t want to waste the default toilet bowl installed

With renovation costs rising year on year, more homeowners are finding ways to save on costs without cutting corners or compromising on their interior vision. For @ourkozykorner, one money-saving trick they used was to stick to the default eco-toilet that was already installed in both of their toilets instead of replacing them with models from Toto or Kohler.

“The original toilet bowls that came with the house are brand new and of decent quality, so we felt that it was a huge waste to simply throw it away since we already paid for it,” the couple told us. In fact, they were even more determined to transform their toilet after seeing a “graveyard of brand-new toilet bowls in the dumpster” during the early days of their renovation.

However, they knew from the get-go that they weren’t going to use the wash basin on top of the toilet, so they set out to transform the toilet into one that was befitting of their interior aesthetic. “We spent a lot of time researching possible ways to modify it before finally trying it out!”

Transforming the toilet bowl for less than $30

taking out pipesImage credit: @ourkozykorner

A majority of the toilet bowl transformation was done to the built-in basin and tap, as the couple already had a dedicated sink in their bathroom and didn’t need to maintain an additional one on their toilet bowl. First, they opened up the lid of the toilet bowl and disconnected all the pipes and taps, essentially reducing the eco-toilet to just a toilet.

diy hdb bto toilet bowlImage credit: @ourkozykorner

Next, they worked to cover up any evidence of the toilet lid having a former life as a sink. Pebbles in neutral tones were bought from Shopee to fill up the former sink, and a diatomite coaster sits amongst the pebbles to support a reed diffuser. The hole where the tap once stood is sealed off with an acrylic poker chip and covered with a cute plant as a finishing touch.

diy hdb bto toilet bowl upgradeImage credit: @ourkozykorner

All in all, the couple spent less than $30 to “upgrade” the toilets in both their master bathroom and the guest bathroom. Everything was also bought from Shopee except the silicone sealant. “You can always save more by upcycling what you already have at home,” the couple advised.

Transforming default BTO toilet bowl

We often see people doing DIY projects like installing arches or putting together a wooden fluted panel wall. Rarely ever do we see people upcycling the default BTO toilet bowl and making lemonade out of lemons like the duo behind @ourkozykorner have, but they made it work. Their little DIY project also inspired plenty of their followers to elevate their own eco-toilets into something more aesthetically pleasing.

If you’re a fan of DIY projects as well, you can look forward to their upcoming project which involves creating a lockable IKEA shoe cabinet over on their Instagram at @ourkozykorner.

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Cover image credit: @ourkozykorner

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