How to Make Composting Toilets

How to Make Composting Toilets

A composting toilet is a defecating system that turns human waste into compost under aerobic conditions. The aerobic bacteria decompose waste pile under an oxygen-rich environment. Dry materials such as sawdust, wood-ash, crushed leaves, work alongside it to release a large amount of heat to kill the pathogens.

Types of Homemade Compost Toilet

1) Self-contained Homemade Toilet

Here, the toilet encloses the composting system while the compost chamber is under the bowl. It is more suited to locations such as recreational vehicles, boats, and tiny homes. They are usually used for temporary abodes, including cottages and cabins.

2) Remote/Central Homemade Toilet

This type suits large households. This system deals with navigating either the solid or both the solid and liquid to a central composting system at a different location. It could be a basement or outside the house. This type of toilet often looks like a traditional American toilet.

To make composting toilet, you need to make a decision about the set-up which you wish to use. A plastic bucket or clay urn laid under a seat can do. You can as well, make use of a 2-chamber model which is of more standard.

Here, there will be an alternation of the two chambers. Materials such as sawdust, hay, dry leaves, and straw can be used to prep your bucket in the mixed system. This makes your toilet odorless and also makes the decomposition process faster. To make a compost toilet:

1) Gather Your Materials

Here, you will need two 5-gallon buckets of equal height, four 2×4s planks of wood of equal height with the bucket, large plywood, one toilet seat hardware, and 8 nails/screws. Ensure the materials are of good quality.

2) Carve a Hole into the Plywood

Chisel out the bucket’s shape into the plywood using a hammer and chisel. To start with, place the bucket on the plywood. After that, use a pencil to mark out the circumference of the bucket on the plywood. Then carefully sew a hole using the circle created. Do not make the hole too wide so that the bucket can sit firmly when inserted.

Read also: How to Use Composting Toilets Step By Step

3) Drill Hole for a Toilet Seat

Drill a hole and gently place the toilet seat hardware into the hole which has been cut. Using a pencil, mark the spot to drill the hole. You can make use of a strong screwdriver.

4) Create Legs for the Plywood

Place each 2×4 wood under the drilled hole and screw together at all four corners of the plywood. This will give it four legs to make it stand on its own.

5) Set the Frame on its Legs

Place the frame on the floor and confirm if it is firm. You can make use of a tiny piece of wood as a shock if there is any space.

Read also: How do Composting Toilets Work?

6) Install the Toilet Seat

Now, attach the toilet seat using screws in the drilled holes. Ensure that it fits well so that the screw does not get loosened within a short time.

7) Add absorbents into the Bucket

This is the last and final step. Here, add a few inches of absorbent materials into the bucket. Also, add your materials e.g sawdust into the bucket and you are good to go!


We hope that you find this article helpful. We would like to hear from you. So, let’s know if you have any questions about making composting toilets. Also, learn how to empty a composting toilet here.