The sharper edge to traveling in Asia

WoWasis toilet product review: the Bidematic, an Argentine toilet hose contraption that just doesn’t work

Written By: herbrunbridge - Apr• 19•14

Mounting structure of Argentina's Bidematic

Mounting structure of Argentina’s Bidematic

The Thais, Japanese, and Koreans all have magnificent ways to keep clean after using the toilet. As reported here earlier at WoWasis, Thais typically use toilet hoses, while Japanese and Koreans use electric toilet seats that are essentially high tech bidets. Here at WoWasis, we love them, because we consider toilet paper to be Barbaric, a cut above the Sears catalogue, but not by much. 

In Argentina, we encountered a toilet hose gizmo that looks positively 19th century, one that really has the look and feel of an old dental device. As the picture indicates, the Bidematic’s swivel spigot is bolted onto the toilet through one of the holes that is used to fasten the toilet seat. A hose is attached to the water source. The “business end” of the device contains a water tap and a swiveling spigot that shoots water upward. The swivel allows the spigot to rest inside the edge of the bowl and then later turned into position once cleaning is needed.

The problem?  It just doesn’t work very well.  Furthermore, it’s not exactly hygienic. First of all, you have to manually aim the hose perfectly under your butt by using the lever. On our initial attempt, we screwed up and got water all over the floor. Once we re-aimed, we had to slither all over the toilet seat trying to get the spray just where we liked it, forward, backward, side to side. The Japanese devices operate in a fixed position when extended, and we’ve never had a bad aim with them. The Bidematic is a slave to water pressure, too, so the stream wasn’t effective enough to get a good washing. That’s not a problem with Thai hoses, as you can just direct the stream downward right over the crack of your butt, use the other hand too lather up and wash, more or less the way you’d do it in the shower. The simplicity if the Thai hose is its best quality, while the Argentine devise really requires some degree of operational sense, kind of like driving a caterpillar tractor through a field of mud.

That nozzle gets crusty. Who wants to clean it???

That nozzle gets crusty. Who wants to clean it???

The hygienic problem with the Bidematic is three- fold. If you forget to swivel the device back to its rest position, you will most certainly foul it on your next visit, and we don’t even want to think how we’d ever clean it… a toothbrush and bleach? Not fun. And don’t think this couldn’t happen. Plenty of us mosey over to the toilet at night and don’t bother to turn on the light. Another hygienic issue is that poop sometimes causes splatter, and when it does, you’ve got fecal matter all over your water jets.  Finally, in the toilet in our hotel, flushing caused the waterline to rise above the Bidematic’s spigot. There’s got to be a clan of e coli bacteria living in those jet holes. And not our e coli either.

Bidematic has a website, which lists years of the company’s operation from 1998-2012. We’re not sure they’re in business anymore (we sent an email, with no response), but you find these devices all over the country. We’ll say this, though: we’re sticking with Thai hoses and Japanese toilets in our own homes, and will forget the swivel and tap device we found (and disliked) in Argentina.


You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Comment

  1. 95% of our business is the bidet seats and we prefer them too however we do offer a similar device to this model the GoBidet for $149. Sales of these average around 5000 units per year so they are popular.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.