chemical toilet

If you’re going camping or attending festivals, chances are you have already encountered a well-known alternative to a WC, commonly called a chemical toilet. The popular portaloo may not be a choice many individuals would relish, but it’s certainly one of the most widely used alternatives.

A chemical toilet offers a safe, healthy alternative to a commode when plumbing facilities are unavailable. They are also a valuable option for people living without permanent plumbing in a cabin, campervan or boat.

Most portable chemical toilets are freestanding structures with a seated toilet and urinal. Most have lockable doors and a vent pipe for the waste tank. The vent pipe allows air to flow through the tank when it is full, reducing odors and providing a gentle vacuuming action to draw up the waste.

They typically include a water supply to flush the seated toilet and a waste tank for the urinal, with an electrical pump to operate the waste management system and deodorizer. They are usually made from a durable, weatherproof material and are light enough to be carried and set up easily. They are also easy to transport for relocating and servicing.

When a chemical toilet is in use the waste tank must be regularly treated with sanitary additives. This can be done by adding toilet deodorant and disinfectant through the toilet base opening (the small rectangular opening visible when pulling out the ‘T’ handle). The chemical additives are available in tab form, powder or as liquids. One packet of dry powder or a plastic bottle of liquid toilet chemicals can treat about 40 gallons of wastewater in the urinal base.

Using the right type and dosage of sanitary additives is important to ensure optimal performance of a chemical toilet. The most effective additives are those that provide a high level of protection for the anaerobic digesters and minimize odor and ammonia production. The best products are formulated with a blend of biocidal agents to prevent harmful bacteria from developing in the tank, and anti-microbials to inhibit the growth of odor-causing bacteria.

To keep your chemical toilet functioning properly, it is essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding usage. It is recommended to use only the amount of additive required, as too much can negatively impact the toilet’s operation. For example, over-dosing with an additive that is too strong will reduce the efficiency of the sewage treatment process.

It is also essential to clean the toilet between each use. The manufacturer’s instructions will indicate the correct procedures, such as cleaning out the urinal bowl, emptying and washing the wastewater tank and rinsing the toilet base. It is advisable to wear rubber gloves when handling toilet chemicals to avoid any unnecessary skin contact.

Chemical toilets are best suited for short-term, temporary usage. Periodical draining and recharging of the waste-holding tank will help to extend the life of the chemical sanitary additives, as well as improving hygiene in the toilet. If you have a permanent home, a proper sewage system should be installed for disposing of human waste.

Maria Mosemi
Author: Maria Mosemi