Compost Toilets Can Help

How compost toilets work and 2023's top picks.

9/8/202312 min read

Maintenance and Use of Composting Toilets

For proper maintenance and usage of composting toilets, regular emptying is essential - so how do you empty a composting toilet? Regular emptying is crucial, as is proper usage.

How Do You Empty a Composting Toilet?

The first step involves recognizing when your toilet needs to be emptied. This will depend on the system type and frequency of use. Most models signal that they're full or nearing capacity.

To start with the emptying process, ensure you have gloves for protection – hygiene always matters. Begin by removing any liquids from the separate urine chamber (if applicable). Pour this nutrient-rich liquid into garden soil away from water sources - remember plants love nitrogen.

The solid waste compartment might take longer before needing attention due to its decomposition over time into safe-to-handle compost material. When it’s time, simply remove this chamber following manufacturer instructions for your specific model.

Remember not all "compost" created by these toilets can go straight onto food crops though – sometimes further composting may be needed or restrictions apply based on local health codes. EPA WaterSense: Residential Toilets, offers more insights about appropriate disposal methods.

  • Always clean chambers thoroughly after each removal using approved cleaning agents only.

  • Rinse well before refilling with starter materials like peat moss or coconut coir depending on what your unit requires.

  • Ensure regular monitoring for smooth operations and effective odor control systems functioning properly.

Lastly but most importantly - enjoy being part of an environmentally friendly solution while reducing reliance on traditional plumbing infrastructure.

Dive into eco-friendly living with composting toilets. Regular emptying and proper use keep things fresh. Embrace your green thumb by using nutrient-rich waste for non-food plants. #GoGreen2023 Click to Tweet

Disadvantages of Using Compost Toilets

Composting toilets have their pros, yet they also come with some drawbacks. For instance, let's talk about aesthetics. These environmentally-friendly lavatories may not be the most visually pleasing choice for your restroom decor.

The unconventional look of composting toilets can be a turn-off for some people who prefer traditional designs. This is something to consider if you're concerned about how it might affect your home’s overall appeal.

Besides appearances, there's the need to manually remove waste from these systems – a task that could make anyone squeamish. Unlike flushing toilets where everything disappears at the push of a button, composting units require you to roll up your sleeves and get hands-on occasionally.

Potential Odor Issues

You might wonder: "Will my bathroom smell like a barnyard?" Good question. Although many models are designed to minimize odors through ventilation and decomposition processes, potential odor issues can still arise if not properly managed.

This usually happens when maintenance guidelines aren't followed or when improper materials are added into the mix (think cleaning chemicals). But don't worry - with careful attention and regular upkeep, this disadvantage can be kept under control.

Maintenance Matters

In fact, maintenance is key in managing all these disadvantages effectively. You'll need more than just an air freshener on standby - think rubber gloves and good old elbow grease too. Emptying out solid waste chambers isn’t exactly glamorous work but remember – it’s all part of embracing sustainable living practices.

Composting toilets may not win any beauty contests, and yes, you'll have to roll up your sleeves for upkeep. But hey, it's all part of going green in 2023. #EcoFriendlyLiving #SustainableChoices Click to Tweet

The Cost Factor in Installing a Compost Toilet

Installing a composting toilet can seem like a hefty upfront cost. But, let's look at it this way: it’s not just about the price tag, but what you get for your money.

The Financial Implications of Installing A Composting Toilet

Composting toilets come with different price tags depending on their design and complexity. The EPA WaterSense Program suggests that while conventional flush toilets range from $100 to $4000+, composting units can be between $800 to over $2000.

This may sound steep initially, but consider this - traditional toilets use gallons of water per flush which adds up quickly on your water bill. Over time, using less water could save you big bucks.

Beyond the unit itself, other costs factor into installing these eco-friendly thrones. You might need professional installation if you're not handy with tools or plumbing. Also keep in mind potential modifications to your bathroom layout or ventilation system.

A Breakdown Of Costs

  • Purchase: High-end models run upwards of 1500 dollars; budget options are available around 500-600 dollars.

  • Installation: DIYers might spend as little as zero (apart from sweat equity), whereas hiring pros could set you back anywhere from several hundred to thousand dollars depending on complexity.

  • Maintenance & Supplies: Some peat moss here, some enzymes there – ongoing expenses aren't massive but should still be factored into overall costs.

Now, let's put this into perspective. The average household water bill is about $70 per month in the US – that’s $840 a year. Over 10 years you’re looking at over $8000. So if your composting toilet helps cut down on those costs - it might just pay for itself sooner than you think.

The Value of Sustainability

Remember, installing a composting toilet isn't just an investment in dollars and cents—it's an investment in our planet too.

Did you know? Almost 30% of water use comes from just flushing the toilet.

Key Takeaway:

Though composting toilets may have a higher initial cost, they can offer significant savings in the long run. This is due to reduced water bills and their minimal ongoing expenses. Plus, you're making an eco-friendly choice that contributes to preserving our planet's resources.

FAQs in Relation to Composting Toilets: What They Are + Top Picks for 2023

Which composting toilet is best?

The Nature's Head Self-Contained Composting Toilet stands out with its large capacity and easy installation process.

What is the best composting toilet for a family of 4?

A model like the Sun-Mar Excel Composting Toilet can handle high usage, making it great for families of four.

How do I choose a compostable toilet?

Pick based on your space, tank capacity needs, energy and water use preferences, odor removal effectiveness, and NSF certification status.

What are the drawbacks of a composting toilet?

The main challenges include their appearance, manual waste removal requirement, and potential smell issues.


Composting toilets are more than just a novelty. They're practical, eco-friendly solutions that transform waste into something beneficial.

You've learned what composting toilets are and how they work—two main types with unique benefits to suit different needs.

You’ve explored the top picks for 2023, each model promising revolutionary changes in sustainable living. Composting Toilets: What They Are + Top Picks for 2023 should now be your go-to guide!

The advantages of using these systems extend beyond saving water; they also have an impressive environmental impact while providing cost savings.

Maintenance might seem daunting at first glance but with regular emptying and care, it's all manageable. And although there may be some disadvantages or challenges initially, remember the bigger picture: you’re contributing to a healthier planet!

In conclusion, installing a compost toilet is not only an investment in greener living but can also lead to financial savings over time—a double win!

Top Picks for 2023 - Best Composting Toilets

Sustainable living is the way of the future, and composting toilets are playing a significant role. The leading models to watch out for in 2023 include Nature's Head Self-Contained Composting Toilet, Sun-Mar Excel Composting Toilet, and Separett Villa 9215 AC/DC Composting Toilet.

Nature's Head Self-Contained Composting Toilet Review

The Nature's Head composting toilet leads our top picks with its innovative design that ensures easy installation. But it doesn't stop there; this model boasts an impressive large capacity making it perfect for frequent use.

You can imagine this like having your very own recycling center right at home. It sounds cool because it is.

In contrast to traditional toilets that require lots of water (and hefty bills), these models aim to reduce waste while also saving you money. And if we've piqued your interest with just one pick from our list, wait until you see what else is on offer.

Sun-Mar Excel Composting Toilet

The Sun-Mar Excel stands tall among its competitors due to its efficient bio-drum system which expedites decomposition process efficiently – think of how quickly leaves turn into soil during the fall season.

Separett Villa 9215 AC/DC Composting Toilet

Rounding off our list but by no means least important is the Separett Villa composting toilet. Its unique selling point? An AC/DC function allowing seamless operation regardless of whether connected to a power grid or not. It's like having the convenience of a smartphone that you can use plugged in or on-the-go.

Composting toilets are paving the way for more sustainable and environmentally friendly living solutions, much needed as we step into 2023. Not only do they help save our precious water resources, but also reduce waste significantly – two birds with one stone.

Key Takeaway:

Embrace the future of sustainable living with top composting toilets in 2023. Nature's Head, Sun-Mar Excel, and Separett Villa are leading the pack, combining eco-friendly solutions like water conservation and waste reduction with user-friendly features such as large capacities, efficient decomposition systems, and versatile power options.

Have you ever thought about the gallons of water we send down our toilets daily? That's where Composting Toilets: What They Are + Top Picks for 2023 come into play.

We're stepping away from the familiar, and diving deep into a world where waste becomes an eco-friendly asset. Picture this: Your toilet, no longer a mere disposal unit but a smart composting system. A bit surprising, right?

This may appear to be something out of a futuristic film, yet it is indeed true and gaining more traction every day. From understanding their workings to exploring top picks set to make waves in 2023—this journey promises enlightenment on sustainable living.

You'll discover how these green machines can save money while reducing your environmental impact. So stick around; there’s plenty worth digging into!

Table of Contents:

What Are Composting Toilets?

If you're keen on self-sustainability and permaculture design, composting toilets are a topic worth your time. These eco-friendly solutions help reduce water usage by turning human waste into useful compost instead of flushing it away.

Understanding the Basics of Composting Toilets

The principle behind composting toilets is straightforward: they use natural processes like decomposition and evaporation to recycle human waste. They break down our bodily outputs (yes, we mean pee and poo) into nutrient-rich soil amendments that can be safely returned to the earth.

A typical flush toilet sends dozens of gallons of clean water—and your business—down the drain each day. This not only leads to high water bills but also contributes significantly to wastewater generation. In contrast, a well-managed composting toilet reduces this wastage remarkably while giving us valuable end products in return.

The Two Main Types of Composting Toilets

You'll find two main types out there: contained or self-contained composting toilets, and split or central systems. Each has its strengths based on different scenarios.

  • Self-Contained Systems: As their name suggests, these have everything needed for composting inside one unit—the 'head' if you will—which makes them perfect for smaller spaces like tiny homes or RVs.

  • Split Systems: This type splits the task between two sections—a toilet seat upstairs with a larger composter downstairs (typically in a basement). Because they separate solids from liquids immediately after "deposit", these systems can handle higher volumes—ideal for bigger households.

Note how I didn't say which was better—it's all about what works for you and your home. Composting toilets, whether they're a head composting toilet or something else, offer an eco-friendly alternative to traditional systems.

Regardless of the system you pick, getting a handle on how they function is key to running them successfully. Making informed decisions for our homes and environment is an essential part of being eco-friendly.

Key Takeaway:

Composting toilets, a boon for eco-warriors and permaculture enthusiasts, turn waste into valuable compost instead of flushing it away. With two main types - self-contained systems ideal for smaller spaces and split systems designed to handle higher volumes - they offer an environmentally friendly alternative that reduces water wastage. Choosing the right one depends on your specific needs.

Benefits of Using a Compost Toilet

If you're seeking to lessen your ecological impact and economize, compost toilets may be worth considering. These eco-friendly systems not only help in reducing dependence on traditional plumbing but also cut down wastewater use significantly.

The Environmental Impact of Composting Toilets

Composting toilets play a significant role in waste reduction and environmental preservation. By recycling human waste into nutrient-rich compost, these units contribute towards sustainable living.

In contrast with conventional flush toilets that use several gallons of water per flush, composting toilets operate without water or minimal amounts at most. This cuts down the demand for freshwater resources while preventing contamination from untreated sewage release into our environment.

Besides their contribution to saving precious natural resources like water, they have another major benefit: They convert what would otherwise be considered waste into something useful - rich organic matter perfect for enhancing soil fertility.

Saving Money with Composting Toilets

By opting for a compost toilet over the standard porcelain throne, you can make considerable savings too. Because these types don't require connection to septic or sewer systems, installation costs are usually lower compared to regular ones. And let's not forget about those hefty monthly water bills – say goodbye to them when you switch.

This does beg an important question though: Are we ready as individuals and communities to embrace this environmentally friendly technology? After all, according to EPA WaterSense statistics, even upgrading old inefficient models could save nearly 13 thousand gallons per household annually; imagine what moving away from flushing altogether could do?

  • Reduced water bills

  • No need for expensive sewer or septic systems

  • The joy of contributing to environmental conservation.

If these points have you nodding in agreement, then a composting toilet might be just what you've been searching for. And don't worry - they're far from the primitive outhouses of yesteryears; modern designs are sleek and odor-free.

Wrapping up, going for a composting toilet isn't just green, it's also smart money-wise. Your wallet and Mother Earth will both be grateful.

Key Takeaway:

Composting toilets are a win-win for your wallet and the environment. They cut down on water use, save you money on installation and monthly bills, turn waste into valuable compost, and reduce environmental impact. And with modern designs being sleek and odor-free, they're an eco-friendly choice worth considering.

Choosing the Right Composting Toilet for Your Needs

Deciding on a composting toilet can feel like a maze. But, with key factors to consider and clear guidance, it doesn't have to be.

Tank Capacity and Holding Capacity

Your first pit stop in this journey is understanding tank capacity. This refers to how much waste your unit can hold before you need to empty it out. The greater the storage room, the less often you'll have to do some manual labor.

The right size depends on usage frequency - think about how many people will use it daily. If just one or two of you are using it sparingly at your cabin retreat over weekends only, then a smaller model might suffice.

If we're talking about full-time family living though? You'd better bet that you'll want something with more holding power.

Available Space

You've got limited space in an RV or tiny home so size does matter. Not all composting toilets are created equal when it comes to their footprint (and I don't mean carbon). Measure up carefully before buying – trust me; squeezing into too small spaces never ends well.

Energy and Water Usage

Moving on down our list of things not often thought about but oh-so-important: energy consumption. Some models require electricity for functions such as vent fans or heating elements designed for quicker decomposition. Make sure your chosen model fits within what's feasible regarding power availability if off-grid living is your goal.

NFS Certification

Last but certainly not least - NSF certification should factor into any decision-making process when choosing a composting toilet. EPA WaterSense is a great resource for further information on this. This certification assures that the unit has been tested and meets rigorous health standards.

The path to finding your perfect composting toilet may be littered with holding capacities, measurements, power considerations, and certifications but armed with these key factors, you're well on your way.

Key Takeaway:

Choosing the perfect composting toilet isn't as tricky as it seems. Consider tank capacity, space availability, energy and water usage, and NSF certification. Think about your lifestyle – from full-time family living to occasional cabin retreats - this helps you decide on size and power needs. Remember: measure before buying.

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