When it comes to installing a composting toilet in your home, there are many different questions people have. Do they smell?, What about Diarrhea?, What type of wood shavings should you use?

One of the questions we get asked a lot centres around the use of composting toilets and electricity. Do composting toilets need to be plugged into mains power? Do composting toilets work if you don’t have electricity? So we’re going to answer your questions about electricity and composting toilets. 


Composting toilets need electricity and here’s why

Imagine for a moment you have a composting pile in your backyard. An every day, run-of-the-mill composting pile with veggie scraps, grass clippings, etc in it. Now imagine you put this compost pile in a plastic barrel with a lid. All good so far? Yes. 

Now, pour one litre of water into that barrel every day and keep the lid closed. What happens to your compost? It soon turns into a sloppy mess that has far too much liquid to compost properly so it sits and sits until it turns into sludge that is good for not much of anything. 

The same reason garden composting systems have ventilation (either by grills, mesh or an open lid) to allow the liquid to escape, composting toilets also need a mechanism to enable excess liquid to escape the system.  

Composting toilets need to have something in place to enable excess liquid to escape so the composting process can run at peak levels. 

Like our garden compost pile analogy, if a composting toilet doesn’t have a ventilation fan enabled, the pile will become too liquid and kill off all the good bacteria and organisms that actually make the composting process possible. 

What if I don’t have electricity? Can I still use a composting toilet?

Certainly. Even if you do have town power, you can still power your ventilation fans using a solar-powered ventilation system. If your composting toilet is installed in an outhouse or separate building, you can also use our custom solar package to power lights and fans to make your composting toilet system fully self-sufficient. 

By combining your composting toilet with a solar system you can free yourself from being tied to any type of mains power to run your composting toilet so it’s perfect for homes that are trying to reduce their dependence on grid power or are wanting to be more self-sufficient or off-the-grid. 

Do composting toilets need electricity to flush?

Great question! Most composting toilets won’t actually need to be ‘flushed’ as they generally don’t use any water (the exception being our micro flush systems that use a small amount of water to flush waste into the composting chamber). 

Because most models of composting toilets don’t flush (waste travels directly into the composting chamber) they don’t need to be flushed but only require a small amount of wood shavings to be added to the pile after doing a number two. 

Can you buy a non-electric composting toilet?

Technically all our composting toilet products will use a small amount of electricity to run the fans that enable evaporation. If you’re talking about a composting toilet that doesn’t need to plug into mains power, then yes, all our composting toilet products can incorporate a solar component that will make it possible to move away from grid power reliance. 

If you have any questions about composting toilets, setting up solar power with a composting toilet or how you can set up a composting toilet so you don’t need to use mains power, talk to us today on 1300 138 182 or visit our contact us page.


Nature Loo / Ecoflo was the first supplier of composting toilets to be certified to New Zealand and Australian Standard 1546.2

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