The most important part of an RV is the toilet. When you are on a road trip then you do not want to stop again and again for bathroom breaks. The RV provides you with the option of a built-in toilet along with other facilities. Different RVs have different toilets to fit different users’ needs.
RV toilets are more prone to problems and issues as compared to ordinary toilets. You will never want to spoil your trip and your vacation time by fixing the toilet of your RV. That is why it is important that you choose the best toilet that will fit your needs accordingly. You will try to find the toilet that will pose the minimum problem for you while on the road.
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A toilet inside your RV is an RV toilet. The main objective of this toilet is to provide you with a comfortable space for your personal business. The RV toilet can be of many types. Some RV toilets use water and some models do not give you the option of using water. Similarly, some toilets are fixed and some are movable. Some have macerating functions while others are compost toilets.
Different Types of RV Toilets
This section will describe different types of RV toilets with different functions and properties. This will help you to decide which of them is best for your needs and requirements.
1. Gravity Flush RV Toilet
A gravity flush RV toilet is the same as an ordinary toilet at your home. The only difference is that an RV toilet does not have a tank. A gravity-flush RV toilet has three main parts. One is the toilet bowl, the second is the fresh water tank and the third is the holding tank also known as the black tank.
There is a foot pedal or lever on the front of the toilet bowl. You push this pedal to flush the waste after using the toilet. When you push the pedal, the toilet takes fresh water from the fresh water tank, flows down into the bowl, and finally goes into the black tank.
The RV gravity flush toilets consume less water as compared to residential gravity flush toilets. They use only 0.3 gallons of water for each flush. There is a valve at the bottom of the toilet bowl. This valve is used to control the sewer gases and grey water from the black tank to come in the toilet bowl.
If you feel any foul smell coming from your RV toilet, then check this valve for any leaks or damage. Some gravity flush toilets also come with a hand spray. This is connected to the water supply line. It is used to clean the bowl properly after every use.
2. Macerating RV Toilet
Macerating RV toilets work the same as residential macerating toilets. They are also known as up-flush toilets. They have strong blades to grind the waste before reaching the black tank. Even the solid waste reaches the black tank in the liquid state.
The major advantage of an RV macerating toilet is that they are a great favor for the black tank. They grind everything before it reaches the black tank. The toilet paper often causes clogs in RV toilets. The macerating toilet does not let this happen. The toilet paper is chopped off before it reaches the black tank and thus becomes unable to cause any clog. The dumping of black tanks is also easy in the case of macerating RV toilets.
Everything reaching the black tank is in the liquid state; therefore it flows away quickly and easily while dumping without making a build-up or residue inside the black tank. A drawback of a macerating RV toilet is that they are noisy and expensive.
Another disadvantage is that they operate with electricity. If the electric connection is not established, the macerating blades will not function. A macerating toilet has also got many parts. If one part gets damaged, you need to replace or repair many parts to get the toilet working.
3. Composting RV Toilet
Composting toilets are also known as dry toilets. These toilets do not use water. They collect human waste and convert it into dry compost. This compost can then be used as a fertilizer. There are two main types of RV composting toilets.
One is known as the permanent composting toilet and the other is known as the portable composting toilet. However, portable compost toilets are used more often for RVs. The RV composting toilet has two separate compartments.
One is used to collect liquid waste and the other is used for solid waste. The solid waste is left in the compartment for a longer time so that it will decompose. However, the urine compartment is suggested to be emptied on a daily basis.
Coconut coir or peat moss is added to the solid waste collecting compartment to speed up the process of decomposition. Do not let the solid and liquid waste mix with each other if you want to avoid bad odors.
Moreover, a composting RV toilet also comes with a fan to eliminate the odor. The major drawback of a composting RV toilet is that it cannot be used by a larger group of people. It is suitable to be used for couples or smaller families. Composting toilets are also expensive as compared to gravity flush toilets but they are more efficient and consume no water.
4. Cassette RV Toilets
You can consider the cassette toilet to be a type of gravity flush toilet. However, the difference between these two is that a cassette toilet has a removable holding tank. The removable black tank makes the dumping process easier.
Some cassette toilets even come with wheels and handle to move the tank easily from one place to another for dumping. Another advantage of a cassette toilet is that you can empty its black tank in any public toilet. You do not need to look for the dumping station to empty the black tank.
Cassette toilets also come with black tank level indicators. This indicator will tell you how much the black tank is full and when you need to empty the holding tank. The major disadvantage of a cassette toilet is that its tank is smaller in size as compared to gravity flush toilet tanks. Therefore you need to empty the tank on a regular basis.
5. Portable RV Toilets
Portable RV toilets are also known as movable RV toilets. They can be easily transferred from one place to another. They come with different options. They come in a flush-type style and are also available in a bucket-style toilet. A hold-down kit is available with portable RV toilets. It is used to fix them on the RV floor so that all the waste does not spill out during movement or transportation. However, you need to buy this kit separately.
Flush-style portable toilets have three major parts. These are the bowl, the fresh water tank, and the black tank or holding tank. The black tank or holding tank is removable and it can be attached to a toilet using bolts. There is a sliding valve in between the toilet bowl and the holding tank. This valve is used to prevent leakages and prevents the escape of sewer gases.
Whenever you want to dump the black tank, you simply unlock the bolts and dump the tank in any nearby toilet or dumping station. A major drawback of a portable RV toilet is that its holding tank is small in size and it cannot be used by a large group of people.
6. Porcelain RV Toilets
A porcelain toilet is one that is made of porcelain. Residential toilets are mostly made of porcelain. However, RV toilets are mostly made of plastic. Gravity flush RV toilet is also made of plastic. Porcelain RV toilets are a modern addition to the list of RV toilets.
The major advantage of porcelain toilets is that they are very easy to clean. Porcelain material is naturally smooth in texture. It does not allow any dirt or dust to stick on the toilet for long, thus making the cleaning easier and helping to retain the shine as well.
The porcelain material does not peel off like plastic toilets and they are also more durable. The drawback of a porcelain toilets is that they are very expensive. If your budget allows, then you should always opt for the porcelain RV toilet instead of a plastic one.
7. Plastic RV Toilets
Gravity flush RV toilets that are made of plastic are called plastic RV toilets. Plastic toilets are cheaper as compared to porcelain toilets but they are less durable, peel off, and get damaged easily. Most RV toilets are made of plastic because plastic is a cheaper and lightweight material.
That is why portable RV toilets are also made of plastic. The major disadvantage of a plastic RV toilet is that it is not easy to clean. The dirt and human waste get stuck on the toilet surface and do not clean off easily. You have to spend more time cleaning and more water is consumed to flush away the waste properly.
8. Elongated RV Toilets
Elongated RV toilets are the same as residential toilets which are in oval shape and larger in size as compared to other toilets. The main advantage of an elongated toilet is that it provides you with more sitting space as compared to standard toilets. Therefore they are considered to be more comfortable. They are more suitable for heavy-weight people because elongated toilets give more space and better distribution of weight.
The bowl of an elongated toilet is 2 inches longer in length compared to standard toilets. The only major drawback of an elongated RV toilet is that they occupy more space in the bathroom. However, it is suggested to install an elongated toilet in your RV if you have no space problems.
9. Low Height RV Toilets
Low-height RV toilets have a height of 14 inches from the ground. This distance is measured from the toilet floor to the top of the seat excluding the toilet seat lid. Low-height RV toilets are best for kids and short-sighted people so that they can fit their feet on the floor instead of hanging them in the air.
Sitting and standing on the toilet also becomes easy for them. However, these low-height RV toilets can be very problematic for tall people because they have to bend their knees a lot while sitting on the toilet.
10. High Profile RV Toilets
A high-profile toilet has a seat height of 18 inches. High-profile toilets are suitable for people with long heights, elder people, and people with mobility issues. People can easily sit and stand from the high-profile RV toilet without bending their knees a lot. A high-profile RV toilet is used with an elongated bowl to give you comfort and ease from every aspect.
Most people think that all RV toilets are the same. However, this is not true!! There are many different types of RV toilets that are designed and built according to different consumer needs and demands.