Problems With Composting Toilets

A composting toilet uses little to no water. It treats waste so that it can be reused as compost. The composting toilets have air baffles that distribute air into the pile and heating units to heat the compost to the proper temperature. Injected air helps with decomposition, and composting worms and macro-organisms also help with composting waste.

Vector Problems

One of the biggest problems with composting toilets is a vector problem. Vectors are any living organisms that carry pathogens that are common to a living environment for humans, such as flies, mosquitoes, moths, mice, voles and other insects and rodents. The vectors gain access to the pile through various ways. If you have a problem with rodents, find the "mousehole" and block it off. Make sure screens are in place. Increase the maintenance of the composting toilet to daily maintenance until the vector problem is removed. You can also make the compost pile unlivable for vectors by adding blood meal and by heating or cooling the pile.

Health Problems with Batch

Sometimes, the compost batch might be a threat to your health because of vectors or other reasons. If you think that a certain batch is dangerous, move the contents of the bad chamber into 55-gallon steel drums. The lids should be removable. Seal the drums, then let them sit in the sun for a year. The pressure that builds in the sealed drums stops the metabolic process of the anaerobic microbes. The compost can then be buried around ornamental plants.

Maintenance Problems

There are other problems that could crop up, and each of these problems can contribute to a bad pile. If the pile gets too much moisture, it becomes a habitable place for unwanted pathogens. Lack of use and maintenance slow decomposition. If you throw trash that does not decompose into the chambers, you will cause a problem with the batch. Always follow the instructions and know what you can compost and what not before throwing anything into the composting toilet.

Keywords: composting toilet, human waste, garden compost

About this Author

Cayden Conor is a family law paralegal who writes on various subjects including dogs, cockatoos and cooking. She has over 15 years of experience as a paralegal, and has been writing professionally for three years. Conor has a paralegal degree and majored in criminology, computer science (programming emphasis) and education.