A Guide to Composting Toilets: Making Compost Happen

For all your questions about composting toilets.

| September/October 2006

  • Composting toilets, such as this one by Sun-Mar, turn human waste into compost and can reduce household water consumption by at least 25 percent.
    Photo Courtesy Sun-Mar

Have questions about composting toilets? We have answers:

How does a composting toilet work?

Composting toilets utilize bacteria and fungi (similar to what’s in garden composters) to turn human waste into a dry, fluffy, odorless material called humus.

What’s included?

A composting toilet has a place to sit, a composting chamber and a drying tray. Most models combine all three elements in a single enclosure, although some models have separate seating, with the composting chamber installed in the basement or under the house. In either case, the drying tray is positioned under the composting chamber, and some sort of removable finishing drawer is supplied to carry off the finished product.

What options are available?

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