Incinerating Toilets Pros and Cons: Worth It?

In incinerating toilets, the waste is incinerated rather than flushed down the drain. This type of toilet uses a variety of incineration techniques to destroy human excrement and other organic matter in a safe manner. This process has been used for many years as an alternative to traditional sewage treatment methods. 

The benefits of using incinerating toilets include their being eco-friendly, easy to clean, not requiring any water, not contaminating, and requiring no plumbing. However, these toilets are costly and use a lot of fuel and electricity. Overall, they’re great toilets for homes, RVs and events.

The best incinerator toilets include units from Incolet, EcoJohn, and Cinderella. These are made with high-quality materials which last you a lifetime. they’re also easy to use and are efficient with using power and fuel.

Incinerating Toilets Pros and Cons: Worth It?

What are incinerating toilets?

Incinerating toilets use extreme heat to burn up the solid and liquid waste instead of channeling it to the sewage system. You don’t need any water with this type of toilet and the ash is emptied periodically. 

There are two types of incinerating toilets as follows:

1. Gas incinerating toilets

Gas incinerating toilets are a type of incinerating toilet that uses gasification to burn waste. Gasification is a process in which organic matter and water are converted into carbon monoxide, hydrogen, methane, and carbon dioxide through the application of heat inside an airless environment.

In this kind of incinerating toilet, human excrement as well as paper products such as toilet paper are burned. Gasification turns these materials into carbon monoxide, hydrogen, and methane gas as well as ash residue that is removed as ash.

Gas incinerating toilets only empty the tank when it’s filled with ash with the incineration process taking between 1½ and 4 hours depending on the amount of waste in it. 

2. Electric incinerating toilets

Electric incinerating toilets have an electric heating system which takes about an hour to incinerate the wastes. Electric incinerating toilets are the most advanced type of toilet. Some even have built-in fans to help circulate odors out through a venting pipe or roof mount exhaust. 

This is why many people use them in RVs and boats because they don’t need water connections for flushing which makes them clean and easy to use anywhere. Electric incinerating toilets are also not very noisy like other types of RV toilets, making them more pleasant for people who camp in places that don’t provide the most ideal conditions (noisy neighbors or lots of traffic). On average, they emit 55 dB of noise which is equal to that of a percolating coffee maker.

Electric incinerating toilets can be installed on almost any surface since they run off electricity. They usually require a minimum voltage input though so you must make sure your electrical system provides enough power before installing one. Otherwise, it will not work properly if at all. 

Electric incinerating toilets do have their limitations when used outside because they need an outlet nearby and extending their exhaust pipes is difficult without special tools. Incinerating portable toilets also work better in colder weather because their heating elements will not work properly when it’s too hot outside. These toilets usually cost more than other types of portable toilets mainly due to the extra features they offer like built-in fans and venting (if applicable).

Incinerating toilets pros and cons

Pros Cons 
Eco-friendlyHigh energy costs
Easy to cleanDistasteful 
No water neededPollute the environment 
No plumbing neededExpensive 
No assembly requiredCostly to maintain
No septic system neededDestroy composting nutrients
Easy to move roundRequire venting
No indoor odorsTedious to maintain
Works in all climatesInconvenient 
No contamination 

Incinerating toilets pros

The advantages of using incinerating toilets include the following:

Eco-friendly

Incineration is an eco-friendly way to dispose of human waste because it does not require any water or treatment chemicals. It also reduces the need for landfills by recycling materials that would otherwise end up there.

Easy to clean

This type of toilet is quite easy to keep clean as no water needs to be emptied. It only requires the user to pull up a little lever that releases all of the ashes from inside into an easy-to-empty container.

Besides that, you need to clean its blower motor once every 3 months and replace it when it’s worn out. The catalyst and the ventilation and exhaust pipes need to be replaced once every year. 

In addition, because there are fewer moving parts in incinerating toilets it can make them more durable and much longer-lasting than other types of composting toilet systems. 

No water required

The incinerating toilet does not require a water supply to work. This makes it great for use in boating, camping, and other outdoor activities where there is no access to running water or sewer connections. You won’t have to deal with water problems such as randomly running toilets and others. However, this also means that they must be manually emptied after every use.

As per the EPA, the incinerating toilet is one of the most efficient when it comes to water usage. 

No plumbing needed

With this type of toilet, some installation is needed, but it’s not as complicated as the conventional one. No water or sewage systems are required for this type of toilet since all you need to do is simply flush your waste down into a special pit that will be filled up with sawdust or other substances that can burn fast at high temperatures. Because most incinerating toilets don’t use any kind of water or chemicals to clean things up, they also mean there won’t be any wastewater accumulating over time.

No assembly required

This means no smell-related problems either. No assembly being required makes these types of toilets ideal for people who tend to travel often especially when installing them doesn’t require heavy machinery like backhoes etc. They don’t have toilet tanks that may leak or need cleaning too. As such, they’re are easy to transport.

No septic system needed

Thanks to the fact that no water is used with these toilets, there’s also no need for a drain field or any other part of your sewage treatment plant to process wastewater properly after flushing it down. This means you don’t have to spend lots of money on maintenance and repairs which can be very expensive too. No toilet clogs that may require unclogging with this type of toilet.

Easy to move around

Since they’re not fixed to the floor, incinerating toilets are easy to move around. This is great if you’ve got a small bathroom or storage cupboard as it means they can be moved out of the way when not in use. You can also find a place for it easily when remodeling your home.

No odors indoors

Incinerating toilets are known for leaving no unpleasant odor within your home. One reason why people choose this type of toilet is that there won’t be any bad smells lingering in their bathroom throughout the day or night, unlike other types of septic tanks that can have a foul stench when used often.

Work in all climates

Incinerating toilets are designed to work in all climates, including cold ones. For some people who live near the Arctic Circle or other cold regions, this is one of its biggest selling points.

No contamination

Given that there are no wastes around the toilet, there will be no bacteria or germs to cause contamination. The ashes from the combustion chamber are sterile and can even be thrown into the dustbin at home without issues. 

Incinerating toilets cons

Some of the disadvantages of using incinerating toilets include the following:

High energy costs

Incinerating costs use either electricity or gas to work. High electricity costs are the biggest issue with incinerating toilets although this can be offset with the savings from the water. The toilet uses about 1.5 kWh of electricity per cycle of incineration. This is comparable to a medium-sized fridge. 

Distasteful

Many people find the idea of having their waste burned inside their homes distasteful and object to the smell associated with these types of systems when burning occurs. There are many different brands on the market which all have pros and cons depending on what you hope to get out of your incinerating toilet system. No matter which brand you choose though, make sure that they include a smokeless combustion chamber so as not to disturb anybody else who may live nearby – especially if the system is being installed in a shared dwelling. 

Polluting

This method may result in air pollution problems because incineration produces harmful gases like sulfur dioxide, nitrous oxide, carbon monoxide, particulates (including dioxins), heavy metals (like mercury), polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon (PAHs), and polychlorinated biphenyls. These greenhouses gases contribute to global warming. 

They’re expensive

They’re more expensive than traditional models and also take up slightly more space, due to their increased height compared to conventional toilets. For an RV, they can cost around $2,000 to $3,000.

Destroy composting nutrients

The heat used in incinerating the wastes causes the breakdown of organic material, breaking down nutrients and releasing them into the atmosphere. The heat also destroys the organic matter that may help the waste decompose.

Can be costly to maintain

Durability is a concern with these toilets. Poorly designed units requiring service and repairs could lead to the need for replacement every few years or sooner if not maintained regularly. It also depends on how often they’re used which will affect drain line clogs too. Some have reported Incinolet toilets awful experiences due to buying low-quality toilets from this brand. 

Require venting

They also need ventilation so they should not be installed near windows and doors where drafts may interfere with proper venting. Furthermore, these units are combustible and equipped with safety features such as flame arrestors that restrict airflow during operation and must remain intact at all times even after the unit has been decommissioned.

Tedious to maintain

The need to periodically remove ash from around trap doors due to accumulation over time can be quite tedious since it’s not conventional. The solution is to get a larger toilet which takes longer to fil up the ash chamber. 

Inconvenient

These toilets take at least an hour to incinerate the wastes in the chamber. During this period, you cannot use the toilet hence a major inconvenience. Even worse, gas incinerator toilets can take up to 4 hours before they’re ready for the next use. 

Luckily, there are larger toilets that can allow up to 60 uses before they need to incinerate the waste. 

Emit some smell

These toilets also emit some smell after the incineration of the wastes. However, this smell is almost negligible compared to sewage smell.

With these pros and cons, you can decide on whether to go for incinerating toilet or not. 

Are incinerating toilets worth it?

Incinerating toilets are worth it is given how much they save in terms of water. They’re also very clean and can be installed at any location in the home, RV, or business premises. While they use a lot of fuel or electricity to function and cost a lot, the cost is worth it.

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