How Does a Composting Toilet Work?

Essentially, the waterless composting toilets are a contemporary, fashionable alternative to the conventional flushing toilet. Ordinarily, they are odor-free, easy to install and pretty easy to manage. Rather than flushing waste away, this type of toilet does it in a better way. It works and saves water by decomposing waste without any septic tank link or water. So how does a composting toilet work in the real world?

Naturally, the waste getting into the toilet is at least 90 per cent water. This water evaporates and is goes back to the air through the vent system. The little amount of the residual solid material is changes to helpful fertilizing soil by regular decomposition.

Essentially, the process is similar to that of the garden composter. However,  the commercial composting toilets enhances it by managing the conditions in the composting chamber.

What is needed to facilitate this process?

The right balance between moisture, oxygen, organic material and heat is necessary. This will ensure that there is a rich habitat for the aerobic bacteria that convert the waste into fertilizer. Furthermore, this guarantees odor-free action and a full breakdown of waste.

Normally, when human waste is correctly composted, the outcome does not have any virus or pathogens. The reason for that is, the waste is killed by the bacterial decay. This fertilizer rich in nutrient can then be utilized around the foot of trees and plants. Eventually, this will minimize your demand for commercial fertilizers and conserving local water condition.

​A typical composting toilet has to perform the following three full and separate processes:

✔️ ​Compost the present waste and the toilet paper immediately without odor

✔️ ​Make sure that the completed compost is safe and simple to handle

✔️ ​Properly evaporate the liquid

​The composting of the waste happens in three sections within the Bio-drum. The sections are:

a) The composting chamber- chamber 1

b) The evaporating chamber- chamber 2

c) The finishing drawer- chamber 3

The composting chamber

The best way to compost the waste gives operational simplification. Additionally, it should offer a condition where there are moisture, oxygen, warmth and organic material. A good composter will provide all these conditions. It also ensures that aerobic microbes thrive and operate faster to decompose waste and transform it back to earth.

The actual operation

In the first chamber, peat and waste mix bulking get in via the waste inlet at the apex. To aerate and mix, systematically rotate the drum. You can achieve this by rotating the handle on the head for the case of self-contained units. This will found on the side of the central units. While rotating, the inlet aperture closes itself retaining the compost in the drum.

Emptying of the compost

To release the compost from the drum just free the drum locker and turn the drum backwards. After this, the inlet aperture will open automatically and the compost drops to the finishing drawer. After turning, the drum locks itself right in a top dead-centered position waiting to take new material.

The evaporating chamber

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You should maintain the compost in a moist condition, ensuring that it is free from saturation. Extra liquid from the drum gets through a mesh screen into the last chamber. The best condition for dissipating any extra liquid is a spacious surface area coupled with moving air and heat. Actually, any good drum should meet these conditions for evaporation.

On all central units, the fluid first drops onto an evaporating dish and then to the central evaporating facade. The tray or dish aids in oxygenating the fluid. In addition, it traps any peat composite debris and nearly doubles the drum's evaporating surface. These evaporating trays can be extracted and washed where necessary, via the door opening.

For a desirable outcome, dehydration works on 110 Volt electric standards by a thermostatically managed heating component. Sealed in a section under the evaporating chamber, the furnace heats the basement of the evaporating chamber. This occurs without wiping out the compost.

In the case of non-electric units, always connect the overflow. This is possible because the fluid is evaporated by means of passive venting.

The finishing drawer

The importance of the Separate Compost Finishing Drawer

✔️ ​Composting can take place in the drawer without pollution by raw waste.

✔️ ​The compost in the drawer is increasingly dried until it is ready for extraction.

✔️ ​Complete compost can be easily and securely removed.

The finishing drawer has two roles:

a) ​To sustain the compost in an efficiently-accessible separate container.

b)​ To conclude the composting as well as the sanitation process.

​The following occurs in nearly all the units in the composting process:

☑️ ​The compost falls right into the finishing drawer as the drum turns backwards.

☑️ ​​Composting completes in the drawer. At this point, it separates from raw waste and potential contamination.

☑️ ​​As it is still in the drawer, the compost is enclosed by a current of dehydrating air. Next, it increasingly dries before the removal.

☑️ ​​The pull out finishing drawer is pushed by hand (no screws or tools or are necessary). Again, the purified compost may be removed when you need to take out extra from the drum.

☑️ ​For the case of seasonal units, many drawers may be withdrawn in the spring. This reduces the compost amount in the drum to 6 to 8" creating room for the following year's service.

​Remember, during the composting, unequal distribution of moisture and oxygen gives room for anaerobic bacteria to take over. Consequently, these microorganisms will create bad odors and hinders the waste from breaking down quickly.

​Final Notes

Basically, this is how does a composting toilet work. Although some composting machines may slightly differ on their operations, this should give you the essential basics. Generally, suitable moisture, oxygen, warmth and of course the organic material are the requirements. You can always obtain extra directions specific to your composting machine. However, this article gives the guideline for the basic operation that you need to know.

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