Do Composting Toilets Smell? Now Answered

Do Composting Toilets Smell? Now Answered

Composting toilets do not smell if properly used or just smell very slightly earthy, like a compost pile. With proper ventilation, the toilet in a good condition, and a proper set up of the material inside, there shouldn’t be much odor.

Besides, manufacturers now design the toilet in a way that the amount of odor leaked is minimized. Some reasons why composting toilets smell include the following:

1) Poor ventilation
2) Urine present in the compost mix
3) Excess/inadequate moisture for it to compost properly
4) Inadequate airflow for it to compost properly
5) Full toilet

Explained below are some advantages and disadvantages of a composting toilet:

1) Water Consumption

Advantage: An average family gets to save approximately 30,000 liters every year. In short, it saves a lot of water.
Disadvantage: Due to the fact that the waste isn’t flushed away, some manual handling of composted waste is needed.

Read also: How do Composting Toilets Work?

2) Design

Advantage: There are so many sleek designs available that can go pretty well in any bathroom.

Disadvantage: You may have a particular design in mind which you might end up not having or getting.

3) Price

Advantage: Once your composting toilet gets installed, there is very few cost left to cover.

Disadvantage: They are more expensive than traditional toilets in their initial cost.

4) Installation Cost

Advantage: The cost of installing a composting toilet is far less than that of a traditional toilet.

Disadvantage: Depending on the space available, a composting toilet may not be a possible option for your home most especially if you are considering a split system composting toilet.

5) Maintenance

Advantage: Due to the fact that the majority of the composting toilets possess very few moving parts, very little maintenance is required.

Disadvantage: Part of the maintenance involves handling humanure thus, some customers are expected to get over their poophobia.

Related: Learn how to use composting toilet

6) Energy Consumption

Advantage: Composting toilets can be hooked up to a solar panel. This is to run the exhaust fan required to evaporate liquid waste.

Disadvantage: Composting toilets require a very little amount of power to run exhaust fans. This is not the same with traditional flush toilets as they actually need no power and use none.

7) Space

Advantage: Having a split system toilet will enable you to have enough space as the bulk of the space taken up will be under your house thus, you get to use the space effectively.

Disadvantage: This might not be suitable for those having little or no space under their homes. Thus, there might be a need to consider a self-contained toilet.

8) Smell

Advantage: If your composting toilet is properly maintained, there should virtually be no smell.

Disadvantage: If your composting toilet is badly or poorly maintained, it can get smelly and creating an odor.

Read also: Best composting toilets for tiny house


Composting toilets do not smell if properly used and maintained. It can only start smelling or stinky when badly used and maintained. If properly used, the smell you may get might just be similar to the smell of wood or mulch. Also, learn how to empty a composting toilet here.