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Things to Consider When Choosing a Composting Toilet

Updated on:
April 16, 2024
Things to Consider When Choosing a Composting Toilet

Image Source: Canva

When we're choosing a composting toilet, we must think about several key aspects for a successful, eco-friendly experience. First up, we'll need one with easy-to-turn cranks and a large solids opening, simplifying waste disposal.

It's critical to consider odor management features such as a good vent fan and a large, deep liquids bowl for higher capacity. Then, keep in mind installation specifics: we'd like to minimize effort, so clear instructions, an installation kit, and no need for complex tools are a must.

Finally, the toilet should be user-friendly, with a comfortable seat height and ergonomic design- we don't want it turning into an everyday struggle. So, are you ready to embark on this journey to a more sustainable lifestyle? We're just getting started!

Easy to Turn Cranks

When choosing a composting toilet, it's important to look for one with easy-to-turn cranks, as this feature can significantly streamline the composting process and make managing waste more effortless and eco-friendly. The cranks help in aerating the waste, speeding up the decomposition process, and reducing the overall size of the compost pile.

We've found that toilets with smooth, well-designed cranks are less of a hassle to operate. They require less physical effort, making them ideal for kids, seniors, or those with limited strength. They also prevent undue stress on the system, extending the life of the unit. We recommend choosing a model with a comfortable, ergonomic handle for the best user experience.


A crucial feature to consider in a composting toilet is the diverter, which effectively separates liquids and solids to enhance the composting process. This separation is key to successful composting, as it prevents oversaturation of the solid waste, which could slow down the composting process.

The diverter should be designed to ensure a clean and efficient division, reducing odors and facilitating the decomposition of solids. As we're striving for an environmentally friendly solution, materials used for the diverter should be durable and eco-conscious.

It's also vital to consider the ease of cleaning the diverter, as hygiene is paramount in this process. So, while choosing your composting toilet, pay close attention to the diverter - it's a small part with a big impact on the whole system.

Solids Opening

In selecting the perfect composting toilet, we can't ignore the importance of the solids opening, which should ideally be large to ensure easy disposal of waste. A big opening allows for more precise placement of cover material, which is vital for proper composting.

It's not just about convenience; a good-sized solids opening also makes for a more efficient composting process, reducing the chance of blockages and ensuring a smooth flow. This, in turn, minimizes odors and facilitates a more sanitary environment.

Liquids Bowl

Equally crucial to the composting toilet's design is the liquids bowl, which ideally should be both large and deep for increased capacity. An ample, deep bowl means less frequent emptying, thus making the maintenance more manageable. Furthermore, a larger bowl allows for better separation of liquids and solids, a key aspect in effective composting. This separation reduces the risk of foul odors, contributing to a more pleasant bathroom experience.

We must also consider the material of the bowl. Ideally, it should resist the buildup of urine scale, which can be tough to clean. So, a smooth, non-porous material is best.

Vents Fan

Moving onto the feature of vents fan, it's crucial to understand its role in maintaining a well-functioning composting toilet. The fan's primary responsibility is to expel odors and excess moisture, essential for a comfortable and smell-free experience. It's also responsible for drying out the compost, a vital step in the composting process.

When choosing a composting toilet, we'd recommend one with a powerful, energy-efficient fan. It should be quiet, as a noisy fan can be quite disruptive. Lastly, it's important to check whether the fan is easy to clean and maintain, as dust and dirt can hamper its efficiency over time.

Bagging the Solids

Let's delve into the feature of 'Bagging the Solids', a crucial aspect of composting toilets that greatly aids in waste management. Some composting toilets have the ability to line your solids bin with a bag. This function is beneficial for a couple of reasons.

Firstly, it makes emptying the bin a more pleasant task, as it reduces direct contact with waste matter. Secondly, it keeps the solids bin cleaner, making it easier and less time-consuming to maintain.

However, we must be mindful of the environmental impact of these bags. It's important to choose biodegradable or compostable bags that won't contribute to plastic pollution. Choosing these eco-friendly options helps us maintain balance in our commitment to sustainable living.

Larger Container

Shifting our focus to the aspect of size, a larger container in your composting toilet can significantly improve your overall experience. It provides more space for waste, reducing the frequency of emptying it, thereby saving you time and effort. A larger container can also handle more compost material, which is beneficial for the decomposition process. This results in a more efficient, odor-free system.

It's important to consider your space constraints, though. Larger containers mightn't fit in smaller bathrooms. Additionally, remember that a larger container will be heavier when full. While we're not discussing carrying capacity yet, it's crucial to consider this aspect when choosing size. Larger containers also require more cover material, which can add to the initial cost. Nonetheless, the long-term convenience and efficiency benefits are substantial.

How Much You Can Carry

In choosing the right composting toilet, it's essential to consider the weight of the liquid jugs and solid bowls when full, as we'll need to carry them for emptying. This will largely depend on our physical strength and capability. A larger, heavier container might hold more waste, but it'll be harder to lift when it's time to empty it.

If we're not able to handle heavy lifting, we may opt for smaller, lighter containers that we'll need to empty more frequently. This not only ensures our comfort and safety but also the efficiency of our eco-friendly toilet system.

Everything Lifts Up

While considering the weight of our waste containers, we must also pay attention to the design of the composting toilet, specifically that everything lifts up easily for emptying. This is crucial because, when it's time to empty the bowl and jug, we don't want to struggle with turning things over or unlatching difficult mechanisms.

We're looking for a user-friendly design where the solids opening is large enough for easy disposal, the liquids bowl lifts off without a struggle, and the diverter separates liquids and solids efficiently. A toilet that incorporates easy-to-turn cranks is also a bonus.

Choosing a composting toilet that considers all these features makes the maintenance process less time consuming and more hygienic. Remember, an eco-friendly lifestyle shouldn't compromise convenience and ease.

Level Alarm

Another essential feature to consider in a composting toilet is the level alarm, which serves as our trusty sentinel, alerting us when the liquids are full and need to be emptied. This innovative feature helps us in maintaining the balance of our composting system, ensuring it's running smoothly.

The level alarm can play a crucial role in preventing overflows, which can be both a hygiene issue and detrimental to our green efforts. A well-functioning level alarm can also add to the lifespan of our composting toilet.

We're not just saving the environment with our choice of toilet; we're also exercising responsibility, ensuring that our system is efficient and eco-friendly. In choosing our composting toilet, let's not neglect this small but significant feature - the level alarm. It's our ally in sustainable living.

Ease of Cleaning

Cleaning a composting toilet shouldn't be a daunting task, so we must consider the design's simplicity and accessibility for efficient maintenance. Some models have tiny crevices where waste can accumulate, which can be challenging to clean. Avoid these by opting for smooth, easy-to-reach surfaces.

Consider also the ease of separating and removing waste. A composting toilet that has an easy-to-turn crank and a diverter to separate solids from liquids is easier to clean. Some toilets even allow you to line the solids bin with a bag for hassle-free disposal.

Lastly, remember that a large and deep liquids bowl can help you go longer before emptying, making maintenance less frequent. An easy-to-clean composting toilet not only saves you time but also promotes a healthier, more sustainable living environment.

Large Drain Lines

Taking into account the drainage system of the composting toilet is also significant, particularly the size of the drain lines. We don't recommend using thin drain lines if you're draining to another remote tank. 

Larger drain lines prevent blockages and facilitate a smoother flow of waste, promoting efficient composting. They're less likely to clog, reducing maintenance and providing a more sustainable solution.

Ease of Installation

Moving on to the installation process, it's crucial to seek out a composting toilet that's not only straightforward to install, but also one that doesn't require a complex toolkit or special skills. We're talking about a model that comes with clear instructions and ideally, an installation kit.

Check if the unit includes parts like a vent fan or diverter, which separates solids and liquids. An easy-to-turn crank is a plus, making the stirring of compost less strenuous. Also, consider the ease of cleaning; toilets with fewer crevices and cracks can prevent build-up, making maintenance smoother.


When considering comfort in a composting toilet, it's vital to look at elements such as seat height and ergonomic design, ensuring that it's not just eco-friendly, but also user-friendly. A comfortable seat height is crucial, as too low or too high can create discomfort over time.

Ergonomic design plays a significant role too, as the shape and contouring of the seat can affect your comfort level. We mustn't overlook the ease of use - things like easy-turn cranks and simple mechanisms for separating liquids and solids add to overall comfort.

If the toilet is easy to clean, that's another comfort plus. Remember, it's not just about saving the planet, it's also about ensuring our own comfort and ease. Choose wisely and thoughtfully.


In closing, choosing a composting toilet can be a breeze when you're armed with the right knowledge. Remember, it's not just about eco-friendliness, but also convenience and comfort.

Consider the ease of use, cleaning, and installation, as well as the functionality of various features. By doing this, you're not only making a sustainable choice, but also ensuring a seamless integration into your daily life.

So, dive in and make a difference, one composting toilet at a time.

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