How my composting toilet actually works – a review – minimotives electricity grid uk


I promised I would do a review on the composting toilet after it had been in use for a while, well after 6 months I thought it was time for my first in depth review, besides, I have had A LOT of questions recently on it :). gas or electricity for heating Waarning, there are pictures into my potty at the bottom (when I was shopping for one I wanted to see what they looked like in the bowl and it was SO hard to find a picture, I never did, so there is a picture of what a composting toilet looks like down in the bowl… if you skip the images you’re not going to miss much, just Denny drinking from the sink ;-)) You can read more about the toilet picking out and purchasing experience HERE, HERE and HERE, suffice to say, I was not happy with the level of customer service from the get go. I am very happy to say though that the technology (or lack there of) of the composting toilet is great, I love my potty! (living in a house for a while without a potty and you really learn to appreciate the potty!)

I went into this project very leery of a composting toilet, with the same thoughts as many people have, that it’s gross, that it will smell horrid, that it will be disgusting, that it will be a maintenance nightmare etc. This entire project has been fundamentally about learning. Even though the toilet was approximately 20% of my entire budget, and even though I had all of these concerns about the functionality, I took the risk to find out about this option first hand. This is my experience:

The pros: I like it way better than a flush toilet, honestly. There are NO smells at all (there is a fan that creates a constant vacuum of air going to the outside). It is warm when you use it (the unit I have has a small heater), no back splashing and no one can hear you peeing! All pros. I have the added benefit of knowing that I am not contributing to a waste system where drinkable water is treated, used to flush a toilet and then has to be treated again, there is quite the process to that and a lot of energy/chemicals which I get to bypass, naturally and safely. Like I said, I was very leery initially for the same reasons as many others but after six months I have had two issues and zero REAL issues, I will get to those in a moment. All of that being said, I have not yet had to empty the drawer (based on full time occupancy – 3-4 persons – that would happen after about one year, and about 4 times a year). Currently I am not even a quarter of the way to full but in spring I will do that drawer emptying deed, simply because it’s been enough time. I expect that it will be as painless as they say (pretty hands off and non-gross). electricity nightcore Other than that, even as expensive as it is it is cheaper than installing a septic system and it is not as limiting to finding a location as having to hook up to sewer, it gives me more flexibility. So, those are my pros so far, now the cons…

I mentioned above that I have had two issues, they are these: First, the neighbor came over and one day when I was outside working and asked me when the toilet unit ‘cycled’ and if I could reset it for a different time because he and his wife like to hang out in their backyard in the hot tub late at night and it seemed to come on when they were out there and ‘really stinks’. This was an odd question to me because there is no ‘cycling’ with this unit. There is a fan that runs constantly, and vents out really high so that it is not noticed (and it does a really good job of being not noticed). There is also a small heater in the unit that constantly runs, that is all, completely passive outside of those two components. It made no sense at all that it was perfectly fine all the time except at this one time every night… I racked my brain on it for a little while and then I noticed that that time of night was pretty close to the same time of night that I let Denny out to potty before bed. Turns out he had taken up the habit of pooping in the alley, pretty close to where their hot tub is, and they are right, he STINKS! It is slightly embarrassing that they think I could possibly smell like that, I don’t want to pretend that my poo doesn’t stink but seriously, it’s not nearly as bad as Denver’s poos… Once I figured out the issue I fixed it, he poops in the yard like a normal dog now and everything is fixed. gas mask bong nfl The neighbors still think I poo nuclear poos probably though… so I have that to think about every time I say hi to them! So, issue one is a non issue…

Issue two, just the other night, maybe a week ago it seemed like the vent stopped working. I have had the power go out before or have to be unplugged for a bit causing the fan to stop and it does start to smell in the house after a bit if I don’t seal off the toilet first. I could still hear the fan running though, I completely couldn’t figure out what was going on. Of course it happened late on a Sunday night, after it was dark and when I couldn’t see to fix it. It couldn’t have happened when there was light, and on the weekend when I could do something about it :). Even still, it wasn’t horrible and I pretty much convinced myself it was in my head and just my pregnant nose smelling weird things (I did cook asparagus earlier…) So I went to bed, in the morning I could still smell it. I asked James if he could too, he did, but it wasn’t like when the fan goes all out, that is very noticeable, this was hard to tell… I went back around by the vent and I could hear water dripping in it, there was no reason that should have been happening… by noon on Monday it was just fine, nothing at all wrong. I am not positive what happened but I THINK that some snow may have fallen into the vent and partially blocked it, then as the day warmed up it melted away and everything was fine. electricity and magnetism worksheets middle school I did decide I need to get up there and put a screen over the vent opening though, I can see a bird or something making it’s way in the 2″ opening and nesting or something… So even issue two is a non issue, I’m fairly positive it was a weather issue, especially since it fixed itself with the warmer temps…

• To empty the drawer you first fill it (cranking the handle in reverse) and then let it sit and ‘finish’ in the drawer for 6-8 weeks, at that point I hear it is just like potting soil and I will not be grossed out to empty it into my compost bin OR directly onto my plants (I still don’t think I can use the compost on my veggies, I may have to stick to the flower bed… ) This happens a max of 4 times a year (I expect I will be doing it once a year).

That’s it, it’s just different than a flush toilet, it hasn’t been gross in any ways [to me]. There are actually a lot more pros than there are cons [to me]. I would definitely suggest the unit to anyone else. It’s weird to talk about potties but I am totally fine with it if there are any questions that are left that I haven’t answered, please, write them in a comment, I’m sure you aren’t the only one wondering. I’ll do my best to answer them as much as I possibly can!

To leave off, one important thing I haven’t really mentioned, because my unit does it automatically, a good composting toilet will have a urine separater which does exactly that, separates the urine. THAT is actually the stinkie part of a toilet… if you can keep the solid and liquids separate the smells go WAY down though urine will smell much faster and much stronger than poo.

The must haves of a hands-off composting toilet to me include a urine separator of some sort, a vent (preferably with a fan to make SURE the air-flow is going the right way – OUT), and depending on your climate a little heater to keep things above freezing and help evaporate off the liquids. gas finder app There are plenty of people though that are good with the humanuer version (5 gallon bucket with sawdust, they sell urine separators for those too…) I just didn’t like the maintenance of those and the fact they would definitely not be allowed in a city center because of health and safety regulations, for some they are a great and inexpensive option though. Now for the pictures inside the toilet… turn away if you must (it’s really not that bad…)!

I have to say, Garlic Cat made me laugh out loud, really :). Yes, there are no detectable odors, the toilet vents 10-12 feet in the air and I haven’t noticed any. year 6 electricity unit The neighbor complained one time because he knew I had a composting toilet and he asked me to have it ‘cycle’ at a different time so he didn’t have to smell it. I was of course mortified but also confused because there is no ‘cycling’… it just does its thing. Long story short, we found out it was that I was letting my dog out at a certain time and he liked to poop next to his fence… the guy could smell THAT and though it was me. I was still mortified but we got it cleared up and now he dog cycles at a different time :). If you were closer to 2 story houses you may want to vent up higher, should be at whatever level the roofs around you are and then there is no smells, they get carried away and dispersed even on less windy days… They are legal in many parts of the country, you would have to speak with your local plumbing code inspector to find out for sure. Hope that helps!

Hi Macy! My husband and I are loving your page! We hope to do a tiny house in the future! In looking at your pictures (thank you for daring to provide them!), it honestly looks like the inside of a porta-potty to me! It’s probably due to the fact that the inside is already black. I’ve read both of your posts on this toilet with lots of interest, and gone through the comments and I would be SO grossed out by the idea UNTIL reading your posts! This toilet seems so awesome! I do HATE porta-potty’s though and that it’s just an opening into a big ol pile of poop and pee. And that when you sit down, you’re just pooping on a pile of poop. Know what I mean? From the picture, that’s kinda what it looks like! Can you clarify? I cant tell where the sides of the inside bowl end and the hole into the tank begins, so it looks terrifying 🙂 Also, is there just constantly an opening into a pit of waste (even though the fan is preventing any smells from going into your bathroom/house)? If you don’t mind me asking, what is the exact procedure to use it. Do you push a button and it opens into this pit that you then reclose after you’re done? I totally trust your testimony of non-grossness, but my only education on this is your posts 🙂

Awesome questions and kudos to you for having an open mind, honestly that is more than I had when I dared to use the toilet! 🙂 You are both right and not. I too HATE porta potties. You can’t pay me to use them… I have gone well out of my to avoid them, I have stories… This doesn’t ‘feel’ like a porta potty at all. In theory you are indeed pooping on poop but it’s pretty far away, pretty difficult to actually see even when looking down, the images posted are using a flash. The bin separates the solids and liquids (makes it not smell), the liquids are evaporated off below the bin via the heater and fan, the solids stay in the bin and get covered with sawdust so it’s actually a pretty dry looking environment and honestly looks like dirt and wood chips (with the composting product I use, you can use lots of different things).

Every unit is a little different and functions just a little different, no composting toilet SHOULD stink (porta potties are not composting toilets BTW, just holding tanks you poop into, they DO stink, and are what most people think of when they think of composting potties, they are WAY different though). The main thing is that the solids and liquids should be separated, when they mix it smells, so even though I do have a fan on mine that would push any potential smells out rather than in, the fan is to evaporate the fluids to keep it a hands off unit.

The process is just to do your business and put some sawdust in the hole after you poop. 2015 electricity prices Once a week you rotate a handle 7 rotations. This might help change perspective on flush toilets and level the playing field a little more 🙂