Urine separator – How to Choose the Right Model for Your Toilet?
Since you are already reading this, our guess is that you have probably made a cozy tiny house with a small chamber dry toilet system. Or perhaps you have finally redecorated that minivan and now you’re looking for the best possible urine separator solution for a composting toilet inside.
Whatever the case, we might be able to help you!
In this piece, we prepared a little guide: how to choose the best Shit & Blossom urine separator. Our goal here is to ensure your number one and number two remain the most pleasant of human experiences, all the while keeping up with the environmentally-conscious practices.
From the offset, we have helped numerous green customers choose the right type of separator, one that complements their unique design of composting toilet. So we decided to show you the ropes by compiling this extensive list of all the possible things that could go wrong, some of the best maintenance practices, and a few definite no-nos.
First up, we’ll present you with some of the staple separator models and then dive into the most common composting toilet designs. Hopefully, there’s a model somewhere in this inspiring article that fits the bill through and through.
Staple Separator Models
Marcel is the blueprint, the first separator we ever made. It’s praised as the universal (basic) model of our urine separators as it tends to fit the majority of dry toilet designs.
It was first designed to fit big chamber systems, mitigating the chances of leakage – a problem typically associated with toilets. Fortunately for many eager beavers out there, Marcel is proven to fit like a glove and unlike some of the other models, it won’t trim your wallet too much. In fact, not only is it suited for your run-of-the-mill composting rooms, but you can also use it for some of the industrial-grade toilets as well.
Marcel’s primary pain point is that it CANNOT FULLY prevent urine leakage. That’s why we went back to the drawing board and introduced an extra feature that turned out to be the perfect solution for bucket toilets and tiny toilets. We call it the Floran!
Floran’s extended edge (we like to call it the hook) prevents the urine from finding its way into the space between the solid and liquid containers. Sometimes, an uneven stream of urine in tiny toilet solutions could end up on the floor. Nobody likes to clean that stuff, let alone inhale that unpleasant odor – and we deal in toilets! We had our fair share of cleaning as it is. So in this regard, our expert opinion is that Floran has you covered. Hands down. Note that both Marcel and Floran models are customizable. Each piece is a limited edition, painted by hand.
Now that we have shed light on the basic differences, let’s see how that applies to the most common composting toilet solutions…
The Bucket Toilet
Based on our experience with customers, we can differentiate three categories of bucket toilets:
- Home (weekend houses, cabins, lodges, tiny houses, yurts, etc.)
- Outhouse (garden toilet, camps, etc.)
- Moving houses (camper, vans, tiny homes, yachts)
Usually, this kind of design requires a hefty bucket (approximately 5 gallons or 30 liters) as a container for solids. This design also comes with the most variety, as it leaves a lot of room for owners to get creative and customize it in any way that suits them.
For the first and the third category, we highly recommend that you lock your eyes on the Floran model.
Floran’s hook adds stability to both containers – urine and solids – which is particularly useful for movable houses. It will save you from having to get down on all fours and clean. More so than usual, that is. And if we’re being honest, anything that ensures a more hygienic and comfortable experience in a very tight space is money well spent.
When it comes to the outhouse bucket toilet, the main question that should be on everyone’s mind is this: “How important is it that the leakage doesn’t wind up on the floor of my toilet?” Usually, the boxes (where we sit on) in the outhouse don’t have the bottom since the bucket is placed directly on the ground. If the leakage doesn’t pose too much of a problem for you, then Marcel will work just fine.
However, if these examples don’t resonate the way you want them to or you still have some doubts or concerns, don’t be shy to contact us directly. In the beginning, we weren’t certain either. Not anymore!
The Big Chamber Composting Toilet (>1m3)
This design is usually most suitable for homes, gardens, camps, and festivals. It also applies to camping sites, public loos, garden toilets – basically anything that contains a drum or a bin (approximately 55 gallons or 200 liters). The “big chamber” refers to the large solids container, while urine has its own separate system connected to the sullage, reed bed, or any other kind of filtration. The maintenance of big chamber composting systems is a tad different, due to the fact that solids need to be cleaned monthly or annually. We know, this might sound a bit icky on paper, but composting in these dry toilets can be done in a variety of methods. It’s entirely up to you which one.
These systems differ from bucket toilets by having a separator mounted directly above the chamber – and not beside it. So if the urine leakage occurs, it ends up in the chamber itself. This is why we recommend Marcel for the big chamber systems, as it is a universal model – fitting for a wide array of toilet design solutions.
The Garden Composting Toilet
This design is typically found in urban gardens, allotment gardens, weekend house gardens, and similar outdoor environments.
Some of our customers owned an old outhouse in their garden, even though it wasn’t necessarily what you might call a composting toilet. Nor did it include urine diversion. If you can relate to this, you’re probably looking to adapt to something that’s more practical and ecological, allowing you to utilize urine and solids for gardening purposes.
The downside? Adaptations often fail to give us enough wiggle room so we might have to make a few compromises. Sometimes old toilets have a hole in the ground that isn’t all that good for composting.
Whatever chamber solution you are able to make – a bucket, a bin, a drum, or just a little chamber directly on the ground – Marcel will fit the bill, if you are not bothered with urine drops and occasional leaking.
The Budget Toilet
We usually offer this design to our most crafty customers who are knee-deep in DIY practices and/or have budget limitations. If you’re gunning for our separators and wish to invest in a high-quality urine diverter, but your budget is standing in the way, let’s have an honest conversation.
You have probably considered plastic urine separators as they are cheaper and easier to find. However, eventually, plastic picks up the odor, and you’ll find yourself replacing it with another one in a short time.
That’s why our separators are made from porcelain. We believe in using the best quality materials that are both eco-friendly and long-lasting.
Consider it a long-term investment – a durable and hyper hygienic product that will benefit you further down the line.
Finally, we offer friendly discounts and giveaways very often. Sometimes we have urine separators with aesthetic imperfections without any functional problems, they are just not as aesthetically pleasing. We also provide support to groups and individuals in their projects and we do different collaborations.
Still having doubts? Can’t make up your mind? Drop us a call and we’ll be more than happy to weigh your options and help you make the right decision.