How to Make an Outhouse

Before the invention of inside toilets, outhouses were used. At first, these wooden outside privies were thrown up without much thought of design or appeal. After all, the whole purpose of an outhouse was to be able to sit down in relative comfort on a bench with a hole cut into it instead of standing or squatting in the woods somewhere. Now that your basic needs are covered indoors, an outhouse can be a creative and functional outlet for your design skills.


Step 1

Measure how big you want your outhouse with the tape. Use the pencil to mark where you need to cut the plywood, tin and boards to size.

Step 2

Plug the skill saw in and cut the boards, plywood and tin according to the measurements. Set them aside.

Step 3

Build your frame over the hole for your outhouse using the two-by-fours. Build the bench, making sure that you cut out a hole to sit on and then connect the plastic toilet seat.

Step 4

Nail the rest of the boards and plywood to the sides and back to the frame, leaving a piece of plywood for the roof. Cut out a door from a sheet of the plywood and hang the door using the hinges.

Step 5

Nail the last piece of plywood to the top of the frame for the roof and then finish by nailing the piece of tin you cut earlier on top of the roof.

Tips and Warnings

You can use screws and a screwdriver instead of a hammer and nails. There are different types of materials that can be used in making an outhouse, such as siding, logs or even just taking apart an old chicken coop. Make sure you angle the roof so that the rain and snow doesn't sit on top of it but instead slides off. The angled roof will also give a little ventilation to your outhouse and keep the roof from leaking as easily. The outhouse needs to far enough away from your house so that a breeze doesn't bring the odor to you but close enough that you can get to it n time. Also, keep a bag of lime close by to throw some down the hole. It helps keep the smell down.

Things You'll Need

3 Sheets of plywood, 10 two-by-fours, Nails, Hammer, Skill saw, Extension cord, Plastic toilet seat, Hinges, Measuring tape, Pencil, 1 sheet of tin

About this Author

Maryelser is a full time freelance writer. She specializes in cooking, gardening and crafts and has published numerous articles on

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