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What Is A Composting Toilet?

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Many eco-minded homeowners are well aware of low-flow toilets, which work just like traditional toilets but use less water per flush. While low-flow toilets serve as an effective way to reduce your family's environmental impact, composting toilets take efficiency and water conservation to a whole new level. Are you curious to see if this toilet technology is right for your family? Read on to learn more.

How Composting Toilets Work

Common in recreational vehicle parks and rural settings, composting toilets are now making their way into the home. Instead of simply using water to flush waste via a commercial sewer system or into a septic field outside the home, these toilets collect waste and break it down into a form of compost that may be used in some gardening settings. Homeowners simply add sawdust or a similar bulking agent to the system, then allow the toilet's built-in mechanism to break down the waste. The finished compost must be removed every two to twelve months.


Standard toilets use a whopping 1.6 gallons of water per flush. If you're uncomfortable of the idea of flushing so much clean water, you may prefer a composting toilet, which uses little to no water to tackle waste. These toilets are also an ideal solution in remote areas, such as a hunting cabin or rural home without access to municipal water and sewer services. Finally, because composting toilets compost waste on site, they don't require all the energy that typically goes into water treatment in large municipal plants.


While most toilets allow you to simply flush waste and forget it, composting units require routine maintenance. You'll need to add bulking agents and chemicals to aid the composting process, and remove waste regularly to free of space for further use. Keep in mind that if something goes wrong with your composting toilet, getting it running again could be beyond the scope of a local plumbing repair company, and may require you to call in a specialist.


If you decide that a composting toilet is right for your family, take the time to research your choice carefully. Depending on the law in your area, you may not be able to use a composting toilet as your only toilet, and may have to supplement with a standard flush toilet. It's also important to check laws on how you can legally use the compost from these toilets in your area; while some codes allow you to use it in your garden or bury it on your property, others require you to have it disposed of off-site, which means paying a septic company to remove the compost. If you are interested in a composting toilet, contact a plumber such as Eddie B Plumbing