Let’s Talk Toilets!

toiletYes, that lovely behmoth is what our toilet is going to look like. I may need a step-stool to be able to get on it. (heeheee- I said ‘stool’). (Yes, I AM a 7 year old sometimes!)

When we first started to seriously talk THOW, I was NOT on board with a composting toilet. I grew up, as I’m guessing most people reading this did, with your standard indoor flushing toilet. You sit down, do whatever you need to do, flush and don’t think about it again. And I’ll be honest, I LIKE that.

But, (heehee) we looked at the options. There are 3.

  1.  RV style toilet. You flush, but then you have to deal with ‘black water’ and suck it all out with a hose and dispose of it properly, trying not to splash onto your shoes. EEEEEWWWWWWW! Plus, you’re also dealing with a lot of gross chemicals and it just sounded too nasty for words.
  2.  An incinerating toilet. Seriously. You go poop and then you press the BBQ button. Well, THAT didn’t appeal to me for a couple of reasons. A LOT can go wrong. Mark posted a link from a blog about a guy in the Navy who was on a ship that had these – and between MRE’s and a malfunctioning Incinerating Toilet, let’s just say NO. Plus, they use a LOT of electricity.
  3. Which leaves us with – a Composting Toilet. The one we’re getting is a Natures Head model, as opposed to simply a bucket. You’ll notice there is a removable plastic container at the front – that’s where the pee goes. If you’re going to go poop, you pull the little lever on the side, which opens the trap door to poo-land. When you’re done, you either put some peat moss, or sawdust type material on top of your poop, and you’re done.

My biggest concern about a composting toilet was that it would smell. So, when we had the chance to go into a THOW that was using a composting toilet, I was VERY relieved (heehee) to see that there was NO hint of poo-land in the air.

The most common question I’ve gotten from people is – how often do the compartments need to be emptied? From what others have told me – you need to empty the pee container every 2 – 3 days. But what AMAZED me, is apparently you only have to empty poo-land every 3 – 6 months. Do you notice the handy-dandy spinning device on the side? Yes, you DO (snicker) get to shake things up in Poo-land! Mark & I even read about one woman who used composting worms in her toilet, though I’m still on the fence for that one.  (For some reason, it just seems wrong to shit on the poor worms!)(And if the worms LIKE it, that seems even worse!)

What has been interesting to me, is that the more I think about toilets, the more wasteful the normal type in the US IS. SO much clean water is used with every flush. And while I promise to never get holier-than-thou about my composting toilet vs. your flushing one, I will ask that you don’t pre-judge mine before you try it out.

My end thought was that it’s like a cats potty box. If they’re kept clean, they don’t smell. 🙂


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