Saturday, June 5, 2010

Potty Patrol and the Throne away from home

When your decision is to stay away from the city for 2 weeks at a time, you will need a toilet unless you are comfortable taking a stroll in all kinds of weather whenever the urge hits you. Some campgrounds will have at least a vault toilet but even these may be locked at certain times of the year. Once you decide on a toilet, you can investigate the various kinds. The three types are portable potty, cassette, and RV toilet attached to a black water tank.

The campground toilet is a simple portable potty that will have a capacity of 5 gallons or less. It is an all in one type of arrangement. Some come with water and a black water tank. Others, are just a 5 gallon bucket with a toilet seat attached to it. The simplest camping toilet uses a metal frame with a plastic bag attached for later disposal. All of these are available and can be very frugal. If you are living alone, either of them will work. If you want to use them outside, a pop up cabana is an added convenience for weather and privacy. The cabana can also be used with an outdoor shower.

The RV toilet is either connected to a black water tank or to a cassette. The cassette is removable for dumping into another toilet or using a dump station. The black water tank of course must be dumped at the dumping station. Cassette toilets contain the fewest uses before you have to worry about emptying. Black water tanks on the other hand vary so much. You can have anything from 10 to 30+ gallons depending on the size of your trailer. The lightweight hybrid that I have contains a small black water tank. Dumping stations are readily available although in a pinch you may be charged a few dollars.

I have learned through sailing friends that it is a good idea to keep extra water to pour into the toilet for smell control. Install a sink sprayer in the bathroom to help clean the toilet bowl. I also have one of the bag style toilets and a shovel as a backup just in case that I keep in the truck. I may even purchase one of the cabanas for showers outdoors and the occasional outdoor use of the bag toilet. There are many toilet varieties available and the one that suits you is mostly due to your gender and comfort level.

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