Commode Chair high-tech toilet seats may include many features, including a heated seat, a bidet, and a blow drier. High-tech seats are most common in Japan, where a seat with integrated bidets is colloquially called a Washlet, after a leading brand. Electrically heated toilet seats have been popular in Japan since the 1970s. Since Japanese bathrooms are often unheated, the toilet seat sometimes doubles as a space heater. Integrated bidets date from around 1980, and have since become very popular in Japan, and are becoming more common in most other developed countries.
Water-heated seats were in use in royal homes in Britain in the twentieth century. The first electrically-heated toilet seat was manufactured by Cyril Reginald Clayton at St Leonard’s on Sea in Sussex. A UK patent was applied for on 5 January 1959, filing on 4 January 1960 and granted in August 1963 (UK patent no. 934209). The first model, the ‘Deluxete’, was made of fiberglass with a heating element in the lid triggered by a mercury switch that warmed the seat when the lid was down. Subsequent improvements were made and another UK patent applied for, this time for a deodorizing model with integral fan on 20 May 1970. It was granted on 17 May 1972 (UK patent no. 1260402). At first marketed as the ‘Deodar’, this model was later sold as the ‘Readywarm’. Among the early users of the ‘Deluxete’ was racing driver Stirling Moss. With the permission of Reginald Clayton, the electrically-heated seat was further developed by the Japanese firm Matsushita. In 1993, Matt DiRoberto of Worcester, Massachusetts invented the padded toilet seat, an early 1990s fad.