How to Emulate 2 Unique TOTO Neorest Features Under $200

Emulating TOTO Neorest Features

Enhance Your Existing Toilet To Be Like A Top TOTO Neorest Model for Under $200

You have considered upgrading your existing toilet to a TOTO Neorest but didn't follow through and gave up the idea eventually. The backout is probably due to the high price tag, which you are not confident if it justifies investing your hard-earned money into… a crapper.

Well, take your time. All roads lead to Rome, and you can still enjoy the convenience, comfort, and hygiene without the real McCoy. You can emulate the TOTO Neorest features on your existing toilet with a mix of components and simple retrofitting.

But of course, with these retrofits, don't expect your toilet to look and feel like a Neorest. At the minimum, you can have a cleaner toilet that you find yourself cleaning lesser and lesser. And depending on your choice of retrofit, you can even add automation for a hands-free operation.

And the best part is, the upgrade cost is under $1000. Or much lower if you only want the hygiene features that make the Neorest, not one of, but the best smart toilet around.

So without further ado, let's dive into fulfilling your wish of having those TOTO Neorest features without devastating your bank account.

Exclusive Features of the Neorest

The Neorest has over 20 features, most of which are commonplace, which you can find in other toilet brands and smart bidets. So let's not discuss all of them here.

If you have been reading up on smart toilets, you probably would have realized that only TOTO Neorest has a more elaborate cleaning system. In particular, the bowl sterilization, which is not seen on other brands. Not at least when this article is written.

Even the wand or nozzle is rinsed and sterilized with eWater+, which is electrolyzed water. In contrast, most other brands use only water to clean the nozzle. At most, their nozzles and bowls have a layer of antibacterial coating, so does the Neorest.

And you probably have read about the TOTO Neorest that cost well over $10,000 because of the feature Actilight. It is an ultraviolet light sterilizer built into the lid to sanitize the bowl periodically and after every use. The result is a sterile and odor-free toilet.

So, if the eWater+ or Actilight feature is what impresses you, but you are not prepared to spend thousands on a toilet, read on for the hack that only costs under $200.

The eWater+ And Actilight Alternative

The eWater+ equivalent is a standalone generator that will produce the electrolyzed water on demand. Super easy to set up and rich in features that make cleaning as easy as touching a button on your smartphone or voice command via Alexa or Siri.

You can even monitor the state of your toilet via a smartphone app which will also provide water usage data in day, week, and month format.

The device is called Shine Bathroom Assistant. It comes with a dispenser unit that is battery operated (rechargeable), a spray bar or nozzle head, and a leakage sensor.

Price of Shine Bathroom Assistant → *$125 (on pre-order)

How does the Shine Bathroom Assistant works?

Next, the Actilight alternative is a small battery-operated UV light sterilizer. No bigger than a smartphone, it takes less than 30 seconds to secure it to the toilet lid.

You can charge the battery using the provided USB-C cable connected to a USB plug or your computer that has a USB-C port. The device also comes with a motion sensor that automatically shuts off when you lift the toilet lid to protect your eyes.

uvFreshr MINI is the name of the UV device, one of three UV light sanitizers manufactured and marketed by Altan Robotech Inc.

Price of uvFreshr MINI → *$49.99

What makes Altan Robotech's uvFreshr range of UV sterilizers one of the best among others?

*Prices indicated are subject to change. For the latest price information, please visit the respective vendor's website.

Setting Up Shine Bathroom Assistant And uvFreshr MINI

Both the Shine electrolyzed water dispenser and the uvFreshr MINI are for sterilizing the bowl only. So you can use either one if you like. Or use both if you want to emulate the TOTO Neorest 750H, Neorest AC, and Neorest NX2. All these 3 Neorest models carry a 5-figure price tag.

Shine is more convenient as you can operate it remotely via wi-fi on-demand or preset it to run on a schedule. However, the uvFreshr MINI can only be activated or programmed via a pushbutton on the unit itself.

So, here's a hands-free way to use both sanitizers in tandem – you can activate Shine after every use of the toilet and auto-run the uvFreshr MINI on a 12 or 24-hour cycle. This way, you are guaranteed to get a clean and sterile toilet 24/7 without physically touching the two devices, just like the Neorests.

Installing Shine and uvFreshr MINI are painlessly easy.

Even if you have not held a screwdriver before in your life, you won't need more than 15 minutes to complete the setup. You only need a Velcro tape provided with your purchase to stick the uvFreshr MINI onto the lid. That's 30 seconds at most unless you encounter problems peeling off the protector sheet of the Velcro tape.

uvFreshr MINI versus Neorest Actilight

And once you have decided where you want to place the Shine dispenser, you shouldn't take more than 5 minutes to connect and position the spray bar and leakage sensor (which works like a hair clip). Don't believe it's that easy? See for yourself in the video below.

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Please be reminded again that this setup is for sterilizing the bowl only. Neither of the devices provides any bidet function. You will need to replace the toilet seat with a bidet seat if you want functions like washing, drying, deodorizing, and heated seat.

Let's explore some options after the next section for your budgeting purpose.

Differences Between uvFreshr and Actilight

The uvFreshr MINI UV sanitizer is decent but a far cry compares to the Actilight. It will be like comparing the Ford Fiesta to the Mercedes S-Class and say, “It still gets you from point A to B.” That's true but super lame.

The Actilight is not just a UV lamp attached to the seat cover. It works with a special zirconium coating with superhydrophilic properties on the bowl surface and eWater+ to create activated oxygen. A photocatalytic process that breaks down microorganisms.

And the UV light will remain switch-on for an hour, so the sterilization is extremely thorough. In effect, there are two layers of protection here. If any microbes survived the activated oxygen, they would not pass the UV light.

On the other hand, the UV light from the uvFreshr MINI inactivates bacteria and will stay on for only 15 minutes. The differences are the exposure time and protection layers. But the divide in the end result is, Actilight destroys and disintegrates while uvFreshr makes barren bacteria.

The closest you can emulate the Actilight system is to preset Shine to activate simultaneously as the uvFreshr MINI. However, it still can't be 100% as Actilight because no activated oxygen is produced. But you will have more sterilizing power than using uvFreshr alone.

Budget And Expectation

If you are good with only Shine and uvFreshr, that will be *$175 in your total spending. However, the Shine Bathroom Assistant has a running cost to bear, but it is as good as free because it is only *$2.10 a month for each toilet.

Then again, how much is that pack of Clorox toilet bowl cleaner you bought last week? And don't forget, Clorox doesn't do automation. Well, unless you really enjoy cleaning the toilets manually every day or week, so be it.

But it is still not 100% hands-free, even though Shine has provided remote monitoring and control. You still need to lift and close the toilet seat by hand. Not so ideal when you want as close as possible to the hygiene features of Neorest, right?

If that's the case, you have two options here.

  1. Get a TOTO washlet with auto open and close seat and uvFreshr MINI (optional). The model you will be looking at is either S350e or S550e. Both models will have eWater+ for wand and bowl sterilization.
  2. Get the Bio Bidet Discovery DLS bidet seat and Shine or uvFreshr MINI, or both. This bidet seat uses UV light to sanitize the nozzle after each use, but it can't perform bowl sanitization. And similar to the TOTO washlet above, it has an auto open and close seat.

The Damage:

  1. TOTO Washlet S350e & S550e – Excellent smart bidet seats but not the price. If you are not prepared to spend more than $1000, proceed to option 2, the Bio Bidet's Discovery DLS. → Go here for more TOTO Washlet info.
  2. You should have room for the uvFreshr MINI if you insist on keeping your budget at or below $1000 when you go for the Bio Bidet Discovery DLS smart bidet seat. *$899 is the price. → Go here for more Discovery DLS Bidet info.

And if you don't care about the auto seat, you are opening the floodgate for almost all the brands to fill up your target list. Then, for sure, going under $1000 can be achieved easily with Shine and uvFreshr included. You will be spoilt for choice, and you may be able to find some brands going for under $300.

*Prices indicated are subject to change. For the latest price information, please visit the respective vendor's website.

Summary

There you have it, without spending an arm and a leg, you can emulate the best of TOTO Neorest features. Of course, it will still not be the same as the original. But at least, getting a clean, sterile, and odorless toilet bowl is achievable on the cheap.

The Shine Bathroom Assistant is a great value-add that even exceeds the eWater+ feature. If you have not read the Shine review, please do, and it might change your mind about getting the expensive TOTO washlet or Neorest with the eWater+.

Though the uvFreshr MINI is not a match to the advanced Actilight, it can still give you a clean and sanitized bowl if you run out of pods for Shine.

And if you are concerned with all these addons will make the toilet look clustered, they won't. Except maybe the need to recharge the devices every week (once a month for Shine) may seem like work. But compared to all the scrubbing, pouring of cleaners, and wet floors, you are not likely to complain.

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