How to manage extra usage in your composting toilet

Almost all Australians are spending a substantially large amount of time at home at the moment.  Let’s face the reality of this situation. We’re snacking more. A lot more. 

If we follow those snacks to their logical conclusion, those snacks get turned into… well you get the idea. We’re all using the toilet a lot more during isolation and some of you might be wondering how to deal with the extra usage your composting toilet is experiencing. 

Dealing with excess liquids in a composting toilet

With more people staying at home, it’s inevitable toilets are getting more usage for both number ones and number twos. Some people become concerned that the excess liquid in their composting toilets might adversely affect the pile and its ability to break down all the waste products added to the compost pile. 

Check your exhaust fan

The first thing you will want to make sure of is that your exhaust fan is running and isn’t stopping for any reason. The exhaust fan is what helps evaporate excess liquid from your composting pile so if this isn’t running efficiently, there’s a chance the extra liquid added to your unit isn’t being evaporated as well as it could be.

If you’ve got your unit hooked up to solar power, double-check all your connections and take a look over the panels to make sure there’s no build-up of dirt, leaves, bird poo, etc so they’re working in optimal condition. 

Consider a urine-diverting pedestal

If you’ve got a split system and are in the market for a new pedestal, it might be worth considering a urine-diverting pedestal which will divert liquids into a separate area so they’re not combined with the solids in your pile, enabling a better composting process for solid waste.  

Dealing with excess solids in a composting toilet

With kids at home, the cupboard constantly being stocked with isolation snacks and more parents working from home than ever before, composting toilets are no doubt seeing some extra ‘action’ when it comes to the amount of solid waste being added to them. Let’s go through some of the ways your toilet can handle the extra load in these extraordinary times.

Buy an extra out of use chamber

If you’ve got a composting toilet that uses a chamber system (most of our self contained units like our Sun-mar, Natureloo Ecolet and some Clivus Multrum ranges use interchangeable chambers). Having an extra chamber means you can easily swap out your existing chamber when it becomes full, giving you an empty toilet to fill up again!

Buy an extra toilet

Sometimes the simplest solutions are always the best. We’ve had many customers deal with the more people being housebound by simply purchasing another composting toilet. Simple!

This will help ease the load one particular toilet sees and comes in handy should sewer systems ever get to the point where backups and blockages start becoming a problem (you won’t ever have to worry about this with a composting toilet!).

Only use it for waste

If you’re used to adding a few extras into your composting toilet (leaf matter, veges, etc) make sure whilst we’re all in isolation you’re only using your composting toilet for human waste (please note you still need to use some bulking agent to get the proper composting process working so don’t eliminate this altogether).

Mix more often 

If you’ve got one of our Clivus Multrum High Profile units you can mix your composting pile easily by twisting the lid and mixing the hummus inside the composting chamber. 

Our CM LP composting toilet has a simple hand crank system that makes mixing a breeze so if you’ve got one of these models, give it a turn more often to mix the compost and help it break down a little quicker. 

Make sure your pile is not too dry 

It’s tempting to reduce the amount of liquid in your composting toilet but this can actually do more harm than good. A certain amount of liquid is needed to assist the composting process so make sure if you’re not adding urine to your system to add some liquid if needed. 

Larger systems can easily handle a bucket of water every second week or so and smaller units can do well with a litre or two of water every other week. 

You can tell if your composting pile doesn’t have enough water if the toilet paper isn’t breaking down. This means the paper is too dry and won’t combine with the waste and all the good bacteria and microorganisms that work towards breaking down your waste. 

Short of these ideas, really the only way to reduce your usage is to either eat less food or hold it in! Neither of which we recommend as a method for reducing your waste :-)


If you’ve got some questions about composting toilets or would like to know more information about how they work, how to maintain them or where to buy them, talk to us today on 1300 138 182.