Composting Toilet FAQ and Debunking Myths
Some people are tired of hearing about our poop while others just keep sending more and more questions. For those of you still curious about how our Composting Toilet is working inside the RV, we’ve done our best to gather all the questions and comments and answer them in the video. For those of you who are filled to the brim with toilet info…well…we’re sorry it just keeps coming.
That’s right…oh yes we did…you know you were curious! We did our best to answer every question we’ve received over the past few months: from the explosive, to the downright dirty and of course the most offensive question of all. In the video we dig deep and cover the Composting Toilet FAQ’s in depth, in the text below you’ll find the brief version of the Q&A covered in the video. If you didn’t catch it all the first time around you’ll just have to go for round number 2.
- Does it smell? NO!
- How often do you dump liquid/solids? Liquids – For the 2 of us about 3 days; Solids about 3 weeks.
- What about Bugs, don’t you get bugs? We have not.
- Difference between Peat Moss and Coco COIR? Coconut COIR is more sustainable because it uses the husks from the coconut that is typically waste from harvest.
- Where can I purchase Coco COIR? Hydroponic Stores, our Travel Store, on Amazon: Coco Coir Block, 5kg
- How much is Coconut COIR? We paid $19 for our last bag of COIR and it should last around 5 months.
- What kind of Peat Moss? You must purchase Sphagnum Peat Moss, it must say all 3 words in order to work.
- Does the waste continue to compost in the bag? Yes.
- Is toilet safe? sanitary? legal? Yes.
- Can I put Toilet Paper in the toilet? Yes. RV or Marine TP is best.
- Is there a limit on the Amount of TP? No, but the more TP you use the faster the composting bin will fill up.
- Must I sit down to pee? You don’t have to but it’s recommended.
- Do I put a bag in the composting bin? No.
- Is it easy to remove the toilet from the RV? Yes.
- It looks big, how big is it? Our Nature’s Head is about the same width, depth and height as a normal toilet but it has a larger base instead of a typical pedestal.
- Can it handle Explosive Diarrhea? Yes.
- Can it handle Vomit? Yes.
- Why is it better than a regular toilet? No wasted water, no chemicals, no raw sewage.
- What Temperatures for Composting? 55 degrees or warmer around the toilet for composting is what’s recommended. If the temperature drops the compost will simply go dormant, it won’t smell, it just wont actively break down as quickly.
- What if I only use my Tiny House/Sailboat/RV a few times each year? This is great, it means you’re compost will have plenty of time to breakdown, and as long as you keep the fan going you won’t have any smells.
- Do you really, really like it?!? Yes! We wouldn’t be talking about our toilet if we didn’t like it. In fact we don’t think we’ll ever own a regular toilet again!
For those additional questions that keep popping up we’ll continue to add them and answer them here:
- Do I need to wear gloves? Mfr. says it’s optional, but I typically wear them when dumping the solids.
- Is it Legal to dump Urine on Ground, in streams, ocean, etc? Urine is a good fertilizer for mature trees and shrubs. You should always ask before dumping as rules change based on city, county, location, etc. For ocean, lakes and streams confirm before dumping as there may be NDZ’s (no dumping zones).
- How much power does the muffin/computer fan use on a 12v connection? 1.7amps in 24hrs. Estimated cost: $0.04 per month
- What’s the best technique for standing to pee? Aim for the back of the bowl or the side of the bowl and the urine will slide around and into the tank, DO NOT hit the trap door as it will splatter everywhere!
- Is there a way I won’t have to dump the entire toilet? Weekly maintenance – scoop out 20%-30% of the compost and replace with hydrated Coco COIR or Peat Moss, this will keep the toilet from filling and give your waste additional time to compost allowing you to dump the toilet less often.
- What if I need to clean the toilet bowl more, what if there’s a little brown overspray or I miss the hole entirely? A simple wipe with a disposable disinfecting cloth works fine for us, now granted we’ve never had an issue with missing while going #2…and it’s not like we’re aiming or anything special. Some people spray the bowl with a little spray such as Lysol or similar but we just use a vinegar + water solution. There’s rarely any ‘overspray’ and the few times a small drop might find its way onto the bowl one quick wipe with TP seems to do the trick.
- What about “racing stripes” in the bowl? We’ve never had this happen with a composting toilet. The solids drop straight down, and unlike a normal toilet the poop doesn’t just sit there in the bowl and leave brown streaks everywhere. Seriously, it’s clean with very little cleanup after going #1 or #2.
- Super Technical Questions We’ve received a lot of technical and personal questions about heavy menstruation, smells, legal dumping options, other composting toilet brands, and so on…so we made another video and article: gonewiththewynns.com/composting-toilet-tips-tricks-solving-problems
If you’re interested in buying our same composting toilet, the best place to purchase is directly from Nature’s Head.
Larry, the owner of Nature’s Head, has offered up a special discount to everyone that reads our site. If you click the link below he’ll beat the Amazon Price:Buy From Nature's Head Directly
The main advantage of ordering direct, vs Amazon, is to make sure you get the options you need for your specific installation (i.e. do you need the spider handle? Do you need a solar fan? Do you need spare parts?) Click the link above, select your configuration (we have the Spider handle with extra Liquids Bottle) and at checkout the discount will be automatically added.
If you’re still in research mode you’ll want to visit our site just before you purchase to click the link above, otherwise the discount may not be automatically applied. If you have questions, the customer support team is extremely helpful and can be reached by email or phone which you’ll find on the Nature’s Head contact page.
If you want to know about our experience with the toilet ask us a question or leave us a comment below. If you have any really technical questions feel free to email Nature’s Head directly, their customer support team has been very accommodating to all of my questions and I’m sure they’ll be equally as kind to you.
If you want to keep talkin’ dirty check out all of our Composting Info Here.
DISCLAIMER: We were not compensated to create this post or video. We get so many questions about our toilet and this post and video was the best way we could think of to answer all the questions in a semi-fun way. At least its as fun as we could get with potty talk.
So sometimes when I go pee and poo it just comes out at the same time… do you have to learn to do it separately so pee does not go into the poo trap door? When I push it all just comes out at the same time??
That’s addressed in either this post or the “tips & tricks” post. Click on the composting toilet tab on this page: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/living-off-grid-rv-sailboat
I saw that you need to hydrate the coconut fibers. I dont use toilet paper I use a hand held bday (use it cant spell it), could you under hydrate the substrate you add initially to compensate for the additional water from the bday? I cant go back to paper.. I wont.
We have not tried a handheld bidet with the composting toilet so we don’t have personal experience to give advice from. It can be done but not in the way you are thinking above. You would want the liquids to go into the liquids tank. Which could cause unpleasant odors and bacteria in your liquids bin. I would contact Natures Head directly and ask the question. They hear from so many of their customers and help troubleshoot. They may have a very reasonable solution: http://bit.ly/compost-head
Love your videos. I had the same question as Dave.
Yes, you can use a handheld bidet with this toilet. Thank you very much for your comment. I did remove the link you attached. The article wasn’t written from personal experience and had recommendations we don’t agree with and are NOT recommended by the manufacturer, such as compostable wipes.
To use a bidet with a Natures Head composting toilet, close off the solids bin as you don’t want to add the extra moisture to the solids bin. The addition of fecal matter into the urine will create an unpleasant smell. You will want to empty the urine bin more often because of this.
I have pet rabbits, could I put their poop in there as well?
It would just fill it up a lot faster, which means more frequent dumps needed. I wouldn’t do that personally. Rabbit pellets are great natural fertilizer for the ground…because they are vegetarians. Just add them straight to a compost bin. No need to put them in the toilet.
I’m new to using a composting toilet (AirHead). Can sawdust be mixed with the coconut coire? I think it’s too damp in the solids bin — odiforous and tiny flies. 🙁
I have seen them comment that you can always add a little more coir to the bin if it’s too wet. As for mixing mediums, I haven’t seen them address that. If you go the “living off grid” section of the blog there’s a whole section on composting toilets. https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/living-off-grid-rv-sailboat Maybe the internet has some info on mixing mediums? Good luck with it.
I’m looking to setup one in an outhouse what do you recommend for solar, to power the fan? It will be used weekends in the spring summer fall but not in the winter. Do I need to do anything special to the toilet for the winter Tks Mark
Hey Mark. First, check the manufacturer’s info to see how much power the fan draws. I’m betting it’s a really tiny amount. To power it you could probably use one of the many portable combo solar battery packs, which could then be store inside during the months you’re not using the toilet. If you’re handy enough to install the composting toilet, you could also probably buy a small battery and a small backpacking solar panel and put one together yourself.
As for winterizing the toilet, the Wynns haven’t done that so they don’t have any experience with it. You should check the toilet manufacturer’s website and follow their recommendations. Hope this helps.
If you get pee in the poop container – does it stink? Also – does there need to be an exhaust pipe and if so – does it have to go to outside?
A small amount won’t but a large volume of it will. Yes, there is an exhaust pipe for the small fan that does need to be diverted outside. We do have videos and posts on our install if you would like to see how we vented ours.
Thank you for the videos, Wynns. My husband and I are trying to convince his dad to move up here (Alaska) and his apartment would not have plumbing to it. Outhouses are still fairly common but he’s getting older and he isn’t going to want to go outside to do his business in the wintertime. We decided that a composting toilet would be the best option.
Serious question: I often suffer from IBS with diarrhea. With no flush/rinse what do you recommend to cleanse the bowl?
A spray bottle filled with a mix of water/vinegar works well to “flush” without adding too much liquid to the mix. Also, you could leave your compost material more dry right from the get go. Hope that helps!
Hi Nikki! I love your videos. I’ve sent them to other people. You guys are funny.
I’ve struggled for years to figure out why my nature’s head doesn’t work right. I have IBS-D as well. The secret is a small dry scoop following on those more wet occasions. That’s the secret, pure and simple. No more smell.
We are considering two composting toilets in the “bath house” of our hunting property. I have looked everywhere and cannot find information regarding how much usage it can handle. For example at any given time there could be up to 10 people at our property. . .would two toilets handle that kind of usage or would it fill to fast for it to break down? The plus side is there will be days, or even month when there will be no usage. Thanks in advance for any advice.
How do I convince my husband ? I get it and really want one for every where I live. His big issue is people who didn’t have a real toilet when he was a kid where poor. He does not want to be seen as poor.
I’m looking at installing one of these toilets in a van conversion, how would it work with a shared shower toilet space? do you think it would be best to have separate areas? not that you would run both toilet and shower at the same time but having showers in the same space might effectively create more moisture / wet which could infiltrate the compost toilet. thoughts on combined bathrooms in a van
On our boat, the bathrooms are wet baths. The only thing you have to be concerned about getting wet is where the fan plugs in, that is it. We haven’t had any problems and know lots of people who use them in wet baths as well. Natures Head is great about helping to figure out the best solution for each install. Give them a call, they know lots of little tricks.
Thanks for the info, I’ll get in touch with them and see what they recommend
Hi – and thanks for all your useful and fun videos. So, exactly how much does the composting bin weigh when it’s time to empty? Can you simply use less coconut-dirt-thing-stuff to make it easier to dump? This is so great – really don’t know how we wound up with sewage plants in the first place. Thanks, Wynns.
Maybe 35 pounds? (It weighs 28 empty.) If you think that’s too heavy, you could always scoop out and bag some of the compost before you have to pick up the whole thing. If you use less coconut coir you’ll just have to empty it more often. You have to have enough in there to cover the “deposits.”
And don’t forget you can remove the top half of the toilet before lifting, so it’s substantially less weight, maybe 10 pounds or so.
Here’s a gross little question…Nikki how do you not get pee into the compost bin? Any tips for another woman? I’ve tried everything and it always seems to get into the bin. Any tips would be very approeciated.
The shape of the Nature’s Head bowl seems to take care of that. Are you keeping the trap door closed while you pee? Have you checked the manufacturer’s website for tips? Probably in the FAQ section.
I have this same problem. Everytime I pee it tracks back into the compost. We have a new C head. Compost hearts to wet and develops an ammonia smell. Any suggestions?
Same here and it is when I am going poo, women cannot separate the two like men can do it all comes out at once…HELP it causes way too much moisture!!! Any suggestions??
I know there have been a few women who have posted their own tips for this in the comments, so you might want to read through them all. Not sure if it’s on this post or one of the others though. Sorry I couldn’t be more helpful.
I’m looking to replace my traditional toilets with your standard model at my home un rural Alaska Both upstairs toilet is directly above the downstairs toilet. Will I need to cover the existing sewer lines with plywood and simply place the toilets over the plywood? Is there any advantage such as using the existing plumbing to drain urine?
There are some ways to use the plumbing to drain urine. I would contact Natures Head and let them know but you can also use the urine diluted with water as a natural fertilizer for your lawn. Check out the book liquid gold as it has lots of great info: http://amzn.to/2rwKRZu
So there is no stains/racing stripes at all? What about on the trap door? How clean is the bowl & door?
Great NFL, thank you! You cover all of the bases and make me want one!
It’s nice to see you took the time to actually learn how to use the toilet, as opposed to those that do everything wrong then complain about it. Well done. Some people don’t appreciate how important the fan and vent to the outside are. They are critical. There is moist, stinky air in that toilet, and that belongs outside.
I do have a new post on the top 10 questions I get on composting toilets. You can read that here:
Thank you for the info! If I have a wet bathroom in my tiny house, is it okay to get the composting toilet wet?
As long as you don’t get water in the compost bin it’s fine.
Love your blog and have read/watched about everything possible. We’re about to move into our first RV but are running into the issue of several parks saying compositing toilets aren’t allowed. Is that a common problem? If so how do you combat it? Thanks in advance!
How would they even know you had one?? I don’t see how they can prohibit them.
Can one of these composting toilets with the 12v fan be safely installed in a shower/toilet compartment where it will get wet from the shower?
Yes, check out http://natureshead.net/faqs/
Great informative post! You mentioned in the video that urine is sterile. It’s a very common belief but it is not true. This is a good article about it: https://www.sciencenews.org/blog/gory-details/urine-not-sterile-and-neither-rest-you
We are talking about urine on earth (plants, trees, ground…) not urinating on a wound which is what this article is covering. Urine is very beneficial in lots of ways. There is a great book called Liquid Gold: http://amzn.to/28XLuq4 and then for just a quick reference check out, 8 Reasons Why You Should Pee in Your Garden: http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/8-reasons-why-you-should-pee-your-garden.html
This series on the composting toilet has been SOOO informative that it almost has me convinced. My husband is totally on board, but I do have a few *ahem* female specific questions:
1. Nikki, you mentioned that when you go number 1, you just toss the toilet paper in the garbage. I’m going to be honest – that totally freaks me out. So my question is: if you discarded the toilet paper from #1 in the composting bin, is that enough urine to create a biohazard (the little bit that is on the toilet paper)? I don’t mind discarding my wet wipes after I use them (which is after the toilet paper) but I know me – I would be changing my garbage every time I pee if I did that. 🙂
2. Along the same lines, if you are doing #2 and #1 in the same session, (peeing first) is there a risk of maybe a tiny amount of urine getting into the composting bin?
I guess both of these boil down to how careful/specific you need to be about keeping absolutely 0ml of urine from getting into your composting bin or if a tiny bit does get in (from either scenario above) have you just contaminated the compost and created sewage?
I would google this but I’m honestly not sure that it will be easy to find an answer to this very specific question. I’m going to try, but would love your insight!
A small amount of urine isn’t a problem. It’s when you saturate the solids bin that you have an issue. Tossing the toilet paper into the toilet isn’t a problem it simply means you will fill up your solids bin a hair faster…not a big deal.
My wife says noooo.
How do I convince her?
What do you do with the poop compost when it’s full?
If one uses their RV for one weekend a month, and the compost tank doesnt fill for 4 or 5 months, would
That be a problem? Can the compost sit for long periods of time without problems?
The longer the compost sits with the fan on the better the compost will be. You shouldn’t have any problems with minimal use.
I’m currently living in a brick and stick and an sold on a bidet add on. Ordered from amazon and uses a splitter on the water intake. I rinse the old ‘bung hole’with water, and dab dry with a sheet or two of toilet paper (truthfully I use the little baby butt wipes) and the paper, usually very clean, goes right in the trash can. Now, I’m going to assume that as long as I flush the Mr. Hankie before I use the bidet that the water from the bidet wash is going to go down the water waste way. Yes, I’m using a bit of water that a composting toilet wouldn’t normally use, and I may have to empty my water side more often, but the bidet keeps me so much cleaner and fresh and that’s important to me. Have you heard of anyone doing this in a camper? I love the idea of a composting toilet, but not at the expense of my own personal hygiene.
You have it correct Chuck. The water you are using will go into the liquids side as long as you keep the “trap door” closed and should not pose a problem. Even using your bidet you will still be saving water and rid yourself of the black tank. So it’s still a win. 🙂
Thank you so much! I am moving into an RV in January and have been curious about alternatives to using a black tank, because seriously… eww. This is perfect! Hopefully I’ll see you in my travels.
We love it, in fact the same one has been in all three of our newer RVs.
Can you compost the solid wastes if you have a large compost pile?
I’ve been searching on the internet about this and can’t seem to find a straight answer.
The general statement we have gotten from Natures Head is it can be added to any compost pile that isn’t used on edible plants.
Thanks for the response.
Interesting. Did they cite any specific reason it couldn’t be used with edible plants?
So I like to start off by saying my wife and I really love following your amazing adventures. I also really like all the great RVing knowledge information that you post. It will really help us a lot when we start our FT RVing life style adventure in the near future. So my question to you is about your composting toilet. I know that in your blog video about it you said you should get about 21 days between emptying. Now that you have had it for quite awhile is this a realistic time frame or is it less than that? I have heard other people say that they don’t let as long as they are supposed to between emptying. TIA
We typically go 3 weeks with the two of us. The biggest factor is the toilet paper, if you use thick TP then the toilet fills up faster. We use Seventh Generation and it’s fairly thin. If you wanted to go even longer you could dispose of TP in a trash can instead of throwing it down the ‘trap door’. hope this helps.
Nice work- clear, direct.
MJ or Joe--dropped the Mary in Jr. Hi where every girl was Mary something
This is definitely the way I want to go. Has anyone found a way to remove the black water tank for more storage or to convert/replace it with an extra fresh water tank? With five large (65-91 lbs and growing)and my preference for desert camps, it takes a lot to keep them hydrated.
I watched a YouTube video once where an RVer put in a composting toilet then removed the black tank and it’s pipe then sealed the hole. They replaced the black tank with a brand new fresh water tank to have extra fresh water. I’ve thought of doing the same when I get my RV. An RV repair shop or plumber should be able to do it for you.
Really appreciate the composting toilet videos; thank you so much for sharing your experiences!
Sometimes I want to back and check out a video and I can,t find it. Is there an easier way to find something. The one that I was trying to find was on smells from the toilet reaching the van when we are driving thank You
You can use the navigation bar at the top of our website to find categories and subjects. For example if you hover your mouse pointer over the word “RVin” a drop down menu will pop-up and you can see “Composting Toilets” is the third subject down: here you can find everything we know about composting toilets. Hope this helps.
I read through the faq’s and I didn’t see anything addressing menstruation. Does it cause the tank to smell more? What about composting toilets that combine liquids and solids?
If you read over the comments we have addressed this issue a few times. Basic answer is it is ok. We are posting one additional video and article later this month that discusses this issues in a little more depth.
So, what happens if liquids accidentally end up in the solid tank? Do you need to dump everything right away, or is there some fault tolerance in the system?
a little bit wont be a big deal. it’s more about maintaining the moisture level in the solids tank. If it’s a lot(which I am not sure how that would happen anyway and not likely so you don’t really have to worry) you would need to change it out.
The fan will take away the liquids as it composts.
So no worry.
Just to clarify, the fan will help dry out the compost but if there is too much liquid in the compost bin it will not compost properly. So occasional loose stool isn’t a problem, but consistently loose stool may be another story.
Any suggestions on consistent loose stools?
I’m in the very beginning stages oh converting a school bus and am learning a lot and getting ideas from your videos.
Is there a way to connect the liquid collection to a gray water tank? My thought is that the urine will be diluted in the tank and there would be fewer objections about disposal
You can totally rig the toilet with a hose to direct the urine directly into the grey tank, in fact I would highly recommend this since you’re converting a bus. Once you get it done send us a photo, we’d love to see it!
You guys are awesome! We’re getting so many great ideas and pointers from you guys. Thank you SO much for all your updates on the toilet! My wife is a composting toilet doubter, but I’ll break her down. Solar is next after the composting toilet!
Could you “doo” us a “solid” and answer this question? We’re about to pull the trigger (probably on an Airstream), but still have full time day jobs. For weekenders like us who will mostly do 2-3 day trips, we will only have used 10-15% of the tank’s solids capacity. Do we “waste” all that coco coir goodness and “dump” it every time, or can it sit for a few weeks or months composting away in the tank?
Thanks in advance, and thanks again for all your trailblazing.
I assume the black tank is vented through the roof. If so, would it be possible to simply run the composting toilet vent hose directly into the black tank? Then it would vent through the blank tank vent. (We are picking up our new RV this week and have already purchased the toilet, so the black tank will be clean and never used.)
Great Q&A session. I think the Wynns do a great job of pointing out the benefits of a composting toilet in an RV. But they didn’t directly mention what I think is a prime benefit: the benefit to dry camping or “wild” camping as one commenter put it. With a composting toilet you use way less water, which means your precious water supply will last longer. Plus, you can add your black water capacity to your grey water capacity. For this trick, see Jason’s video “Crazy Easy Way to Combine RV Black and Grey Tank.” Even though many of the campgrounds I stay at are unimproved, they do usually have an outhouse. So, I’m assuming that you could easily dump the liquids in the outhouse. You may have to create a liquids tank drape of some kind for transport to the outhouse. I do have a question: Does the toilet exhaust to the outside of the coach create any problems for your RV neighbors when you have them?
OK, this is not so much about the process of the composting toilet as it is about the actual Q&A Video. I was about half way through when I noticed that it was very well done. What I mean is when either of you took a question, the camera shifted to that individual, then back to both.
Here is my question, did you have someone doing the filming or did you use 3 cameras, and the editing took care of the presentation? Noticing that you guys are self-videographers, I am going with multiple cameras. Just curious about the process. Great Job on the video, my questions were answered, I thank you for your willingness to go the extra mile on these subjects.
Back in the 80s, I was an officer and roving consultant for a small company that sold composted agricultural waste as fertilizer. Some things folks need to keep in mind –
1) Composting is an aerobic process. In regular words, that means it only happens if there is a good supply of fresh air throughout the mix. Turning the handle and the vent fan are essential. If the process goes anaerobic, “the smell will tell.”
2) Disinfectants like Lysol will kill the bacteria that do the work of composting. The same may be true of disinfectant wipes if they are tossed in the composting compartment, so you need to check the ingredients list carefully.
3) Folks who are taking medications pass them through and the effects may do any of a number of bad things from killing the bacteria in the toilet to spreading disease resistant germs into the ecosystem so you need to be careful about that.
That said, I think youall are doing a great job of educating folks about composting toilets (and a lot of other things too). Great job, guys.
p.s. why does this spell checker not like “youall” ?
Thanks for sharing Edward, as for the spell checker maybe it prefers the Texas Ya’ll?
Ya’ll is the way I say, just not the way I spell it. I’m from Big D too.
What about “skid marks” that are sometimes left after you go number 2? With water, I just use the sprayer, and sometimes a brush. But since a composting toilet doesn’t use water, what do you do? I don’t really want to reach down into the toilet with paper to clean. There must be some way…
Skid marks don’t really happen, the solids simply fall directly down. In the rare occasion your a little explosive a simple wipe down with a disposable sanitary wipe will do.
Alan, that was my primary concern also. As most vegans know, our poops do not “fall straight down” but have a varying explosive nature. A conventional toilet rinses that side-splash down with water. In a Nature’s Head, the only way to rinse it away would be down the pee tube. Or manually wipe it away with a wipe — not happening!
Debbie from Illinois
Thanks for all the great information. Happy travels!
72 hours with our new composting toilet we couldn’t be happier! It’s true…no smell!!!
Woooo Hoooo! Glad its working out so far!
Jason & Nikki–My wife and I are the proud parents of two human-toilet trained felines. (See http://www.litterkwitter.com). A few question. 1) Is there any issue with leaving the lid up on the toilet? 2) Do the liquid and solids automatically separate (e.g. if a furball does both in a single session) without intervention? 3) Beyond the (almost nonexistent) threat of toxoplasmosis, what does the manufacturer say about pet waste in the toilet?
Bob, I don’t think it would work. You can see how the toilet works here: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/composting-toilet
Thanks for saying you are not getting paid to promote this toilet. I seem to have assumed you were.
Have you had a chance to see the new Dry-Flush unit. Size may be great in a size B or a retro fit.
We have seen this toilet, our friends actually own one. We don’t like it as much because the bags are expensive, and putting waste in a non-composting bag seems wrong. Also not sure about the waste being sealed into a bag, does the bacteria die the same? will it dry out? I do have lots of questions about it so we look forward to meeting the mfr (hoping they might be at the Louisville RV show this winter).
Your website is the best. Very interesting. Very helpful. Very well done. Would you be able to demonstrate the dumping and cleaning of the compositing toilet? Where can it be dumped?
(I have a 2013 Leisure Travel Serenity we use for touring. Love it. Banff, Jasper, Glacier coming up in July/August)
P.S. In return for your efforts, would it be helpful for me to buy items through your website store?
Chip, We do have demonstrations of the prepping and dumping process which you will find here on the Composting Toilet page: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/all-composting-toilet Let me know if these articles and videos don’t answer your questions.
And thanks for the kind words. Our content is our gift to you and the store is a resource for all the items we use. We do get a little kick back from Amazon for items purchased, but never any pressure and never expected!
Anyone who would like a more in depth look at the hows and whys of composting toilets needs to read The Humanure Handbook. It is even available at my local library. Wasting millions of gallons of fresh water just to carry a turd away is wasteful and there are better ways. Composting toilets are not widely used in homes because $20-$30k septic systems and sewer hookups by a “list” of “approved” installers by the local health department is a racket. Good ole boys club. I did A LOT of research on this as I was researching putting an off the grid cabin in our woods.
I agree Jennifer! We do link to the humanure handbook on our “what a composting toilet is and why you need one” post. We also link to the liquid gold book which is another good one if you haven’t read that one. Interesting stuff!
Are you being sponsored or retained by any of the companies you are reviewing in this article ?
I thought you were leasing your RV from Fleetwood and wonder why the toilet in the new unit was changed out for a short term lease ?
Is the coconut husk from the U.S. ?
We are not being paid for this article or video. We have received an overwhelming amount of questions about our toilet and there’s no other way to get the information out there.
Fleetwood installed the composting toilet in our new RV because we asked them to as we prefer it over the standard flush toilet. Our toilet is the same toilet we owned before with the Vesta so we did not get a new one.
The first batch of Coco COIR was from Sri Lanka. As for US COIR I’m not sure there are many coconut growing regions around here.
This post is not sponsored. We do put a disclaimer on the bottom of posts when a product was given for testing purposes or if we were compensated for anything. This post is not one of them. We were not paid to create this content or video. This coach is a lease and part of our agreement was that we could add our eco features to the coach while we used it. Which is why we transferred our composting toilet and solar. When our lease ends, we will take these things with us. As for the coconut husks, I have not seen anything yet sourced from the U.S.
Umm. Kinda gross question, but what about lady time?
I believe we covered that question in the video. If it’s a normal bodily function, all is good.
Being a clean freak, I clean both my RV toilet and home toilet a lot using Lysol toilet bowl cleaner, brushes etc. Since liquids are not to go into toilet, how do you clean it. What type of cleaning regiment do you have compared to what you had in your homes before you became full time RVers?
Its crazy easy to clean. I use the vinegar/water spray bottle and spray a couple of sprays in the bowl after every use which keeps everything nice and clean. Once or twice a week I use the seventh generation disinfecting cleaning wipes to clean the bowl while wearing cleaning gloves. Hope that helps.
Nikki and Jason,
Thanks for giving up the poop on the composting toilet. I have some questions:
1. Did you keep the existing toilet to reinstall when you changed from Wendy to Roy?
2. Do you think that MH manufactures will ever offer a composting toilet as an option with larger fresh and gray tanks in place of the black tank. Or will we always have to rely on aftermarket for extending our “wild” days?
3. Do you think that manufactures will increase solar generating capability for more “wild” days, or will we always have to go to the aftermarket for that as well?
4. Is it easy to hit the trap door hole and what if your aim is no so good?
5. Is there a cleaning process for the bowl?
Thanks for the questions, here’s the answers:
1. We did take our composting toilet from Windy and installed it into Roy.
2. It is a possibility that the composting toilet would be offered, but not likely on a larger class A coach, maybe a small trailer or GTRV type of 4×4 RV.
3. We are working with Fleetwood to offer solar (and more batteries) from the factory at a discounted rate…keep your fingers crossed.
4. I’m surprised how easy it is to hit the opening, even during an emergency event!
5. A quick spritz of vinegar and water is sufficient during use, after that a quick wipe with a sanitizing wipe works for us.
Thanks for the response. All of your information is encouraging. I like the idea of cycling the pot every 3 weeks and not worrying about having a dump accident of catastrophic proportions. If you spill a little dirt it’s a lot less of a mess. I really like the idea of having my cake and eating it too. Have a rather large Class A and being able to wild camp for some length of time is the best of both worlds. Comfort and peaceful relaxation! I hope to cross paths with you two some day, maybe have a glass of wine (or a good stout).
Love your posts, continue
OK, how do you clean the #2 bowl after going?
No need to clean the bowl, the solids just drop straight down into the compost bin.
Interesting, thank you
How does one manage to get the pee and poop into two different containers if one must do both in a single session? Is there a valve or lever?
The Toilet, along with your body, automatically separate the two. Check out the video in this post and you can see exactly how it works: https://www.gonewiththewynns.com/composting-toilet
As a master plumber who knows to much about poo. I wish the skeptics could just use one of these so they would relize your right. Number 2 in water and urine smells bad. Number 2 mixed in (dirt) coconut coir no smell. And no wet naps are flushable just because they advertise them that way. I make alot of money on them though.
Haha, thanks for sharing Don!
I know you guys keep saying there is no smell but, seems like there would be if any #2 hits the bowl. I know that happens in my regular home toilet.
Also, will flushable wet naps compost with this toilet?
No smell, the solids drop directly into the tank. Not sure about wet wipes, I would guess if the wipes are biodegradable it would be OK.
The opening just doesn’t seem that large to always drop #2 directly through it without hitting the bowl sometime. So you’re saying you’ve never hit the bowl at all….ever?
I love this video and I’m almost too embarrassed to ask = but what about the dreaded female monthlies?
You guys have seen a small Class B wet bath before, right? Do you think it would fit and function properly in one?
It does work in a wet bath, you have to drill a small hole in the liquid tank holder, not the actual liquid tank but the holder. Contact the Mfr. for details.