Some times back, the idea of installing a composting toilet in your home could have appeared gross. But living off-grid on a cabin, boat, or tiny house made people embrace composting toilets.
When planning a getaway with your friends to the woods for cabin living, they may ask about the toilet. Living in an off-grid homestead requires proper waste disposal planning.
It will help you create a harmonious functioning of your living space. Overflowing toilets, unbearable odors, and a swarm of flies can turn your paradisaic getaway into a living nightmare.
These best composting toilets for off-grid can help you avoid inconveniences. They are easy to install, do not smell, and are an excellent way of moving towards sustainability and self-sufficiency.
Many people pushing for composite toilets want them for off-grid living and as emergency toilets in case of a disaster.
Composting toilets are also ideal where there is little or no water since they are not connected to any sewer systems. They work by allowing the natural process- of aerobic decomposition to occur.
You can permanently install them but furnish them with a vent to the outdoors. Alternatively, you can purchase the portable ones, allowing you to set up with ease and transport to where you want.
Although these products have no set functionality requirements, some manufacturers obtain NSF certification to inspire confidence in customers that their products meet the basic standards.
5 Best Composting Toilets For Off-Grid
Which composting toilets are the best for off-grid? This article will discuss 8 composting toilets you can install in your cabin or boat.
1- Nature’s Head Self-Contained Composting Toilet
Nature’s head self-contained composting toilet has stainless-steel hardware and is self-contained. It has a built-in fan powered by a 12-volt battery and a hose to channel the odors outdoors.
Additionally, it has an agitator with a space-saving handle for mixing materials. It has cocoa coir or peat moss to process waste.
Since Nature’s head self-contained composting toilet does not emit any smell, you can use it in a boat or a small house. Although you may need to empty the liquids after a few days of usage, solid waste can last between 60 and 80 days.
Tip: Since these composting toilets vary from one brand to another in how they work and are installed, ensure you follow the instruction given by the manufacturer when setting up. Although they do not require special skills or huge carpentry to install, some municipalities may require you to obtain a permit before permanently installing a composting toilet.
2- Sun-Mar Compact Electric Waterless Composting Toilet
Sun-Mar is a medium-capacity toilet with a compact, low-profile unit. They are easier to install and are cheaper than most models. You can plug it into a traditional 110-volt outlet.
You can seasonally use this composting toilet off-grid for up to three adults, or one adult can use it for their regular residential use.
The Sun-Mar compact electric waterless composting toilet also has a handle to allow you to mix and aerate materials in the compartments. The materials are held in a three-chambered drum every time you use the toilet.
I got to say; that they do not offer the best customer service; however, they are easy to establish and eliminate the need for septics and their related issues in rural areas.
3- Separett Composting Toilet
Although Separett is originally from Europe, Separett 9215 composting toilet is also available in the USA. These composting toilets are similar to normal flush toilets, allowing the guest and other people unfamiliar with them to use them.
The Separett is the easiest composting toilet you will ever use. Nevertheless, you cannot manually rotate the chamber, which means that in case of a power outage, the champers will not rotate, and the composting process will be slower.
The electric rotator distinguishes them from other composting toilets. The chamber will automatically rotate itself once you are done with your thing.
Separett 9215 composting toilet will occasionally require emptying of the waste chamber. Before installing the Separrett composting toilet, ensure your cabin or house has or is near a source of power. You can directly connect the fan to the vent, enabling it to work and vent up to 20 feet.
Furthermore, you can set the liquids to drain into a plumbing system or a container that you can empty manually.
4- Biolet Composting Toilet 65
Biolet is a closed composting toilet system from Sweden. Biolet composting toilet breaks down the waste materials in the toilet without smelling.
Though Biolet Composting Toilet 65 is expensive, it is fully automated. If you sit on it, it opens the trap door. And once you are done, the closing lid activates the mixing arm to distribute moisture and break down the paper in the upper chamber.
If there is excess liquid, the fan switch kicks up. The dry feces drop into the lower chambers, and the LED light signals you when it is time to empty the composting toilet.
However, you should be prepared to purchase the compost mix and add it to the toilet for faster decomposition. The investment is worth it, especially if you have a family.
Check the video below on how to use Biolet composting toilet in tiny homes, cabins, and temporary accommodation.
5- Loveable Loo Compost Toilet
Are you looking for a simple and low-budget solution for an off-grid camp? Consider this low-tech option for your cabin. Loveable Loo Starter Kit does not need electricity, plumbing, water, venting, and chemicals.
It is only a wooden bucket attached to the toilet seat. You could add sawdust to cover your waste after every use, and once the container is full empty the content into your pile or outdoor compost.
Watch the video below for a brief overview of the Loveable Loo compost toilet.
Factors To Consider When Buying a Compositing Toilet
It is important to ensure you buy a quality compositing toilet that is worth your money. Consider some factors to remember when buying a composting toilet.
1- NSF Certification
Although no official organization determines quality standards and requirements for composting toilets, go for products with certification from NSF.
NSF (also formerly known as the National Sanitation Foundation) is an independent organization with no vested interest in composting toilets. The organization verifies if consumer products meet common standards like the ability to handle what manufacturers say or being odor-free.
2- Capacity Of The Composting Toilet
Most manufacturers of these toilets indicate the number of people who can use the toilet. Capacity helps you to avoid emptying the composting toilet daily.
3- Plumbing Requirements
Compositing toilets vary in their plumbing requirements, with some requiring plumbing hookups or electricity to function.
Others are also self-contained and can easily work off-grid. Therefore, ensure you read the installation manual to understand your purchase.
4- Ease of Installation
This factor is related to plumbing requirements but involves asking yourself several questions. For instance, do you want your toilet to come fully assembled, or do you know how to do it yourself?
If you want a quick and easy-to-install toilet, you can go for the fully assembled composting toilet. However, if you are an experienced builder, you might find the option of constructing your off-grid toilet system exciting. Constructing your own can significantly reduce installation costs.
Different off-grid toilet systems have different maintenance requirements. Depending on capacity, some systems may need daily emptying; others may also need daily stirring, while high-spec options need little maintenance.
When buying your compost toilet system, know your needs and how often you will be using the toilet.
If the composting toilet is installed outhouse, it may require little daily maintenance; nevertheless, you will need to periodically dig a new pit, which may involve heavy manual labor.
Choosing an off-grid toilet system is even more crucial if you live in a high-temperature climate. Warmer climates make it challenging to maintain an off-grid toilet system. Even a well-maintained system can easily turn smelly, with maggots and flies becoming a huge problem.
An outhouse toilet can also be challenging to use during winter at freezing temperatures or in the middle of the night.
Therefore, temperatures determine where you will put your off-grid toilet.
6- Waste Disposal
This is probably the undesirable part of off-grid homesteading; however, when buying the compost toilet system, you want to consider how to dispose of the toilet waste.
If you have a sewerage system or septic tank, you can integrate your composting toilet into the septic tank.
Since humans produce a huge amount of urine, feces, and used toilet papers, a little research could help you know which system to install with the on-site waste proposal.
Composting toilets are becoming popular with off-grid living since they do not smell or attract flies into your living space. There are different types of compost toilet systems, which requires research to determine which brand suits you.
Your choices could be determined by the capacity, maintenance, ease of installation, plumbing requirements, waste disposal, and temperature levels in your area.
Before settling for a certain composting toilet, do your due diligence and arrive at an appropriate system.