To enjoy your every adventure together with your RV fully, your vehicle should be equipped with a powerful tool that can handle the wastes you produce when answering the call of nature. This is where RV toilet comes in, it is where you can pee or poop when you are on the road.
Camping or traveling with your RV is just about relaxing around your RV, reading a book under the shade of your RV awning, or having a meal on your RV patio mat. It also involves going to the toilet once in a while.
In this guide, we will share with you how to choose the best RV toilet to have in your RV. We will start with the basics of RV toilets like what is an RV toilet, how does it work and many more. You learn from this guide what the important things to look for in choosing a toilet for your RV so that you have the finest one in your vehicle.
The guide also provides a reviewed list of the top 10 best RV toilet you can find o the market today. You can browse through as It may have the best RV toilet that will take care of all of your bathroom needs. The list is added in order to help you easily choose a product for your vehicle. You can even compare the items from each other to weight in their features and decide to buy the best one for you.
Everything You Need to Know About RV Toilets
It is important to understand what an RV toilet is and how does it work and how to use it. Understanding the basics of this toilet will help you find the best one for your RV.
What are RV Toilets?
These toilets are specifically designed and made for a certain application; they are to be used in RVs. Compared with residential toilets, the toilets for RVs conserve water because they consume less of it. Some newer models of these RV toilets are much more water efficient as they consume much lesser water as less as a pint.
The exclusion of the flush tank in the RV toilet effectively prevents water splashes and spills from the tank on the inside of your RV as it maneuvers on bumpy roads or making sharp turns.
In general, residential toilets and RV toilets have different functionality and purpose from each other. And you should never use a residential toilet in your RV, ever.
The Benefits you can get from RV Toilets
While you are on the road or on camping grounds, your RV is your home. When you have to answer the call of nature, you will answer it and do your business in the toilet of your RV.
Having an RV toilet will relieve you from holding your pee while you are on the road, instead of looking for the nearest available public restroom. It also so prevents you from going through the bushes doing your business.
RV toilet really gives you the comfort of your home where you can just peep or do your business whenever you like. You should spend for the best RV toilet for more comfort and to take care of your needs effectively and efficiently.
How Does It Work?
A lot of different types of RV toilet in the market offer you different features and looks. But all these types basically have the same function and purpose, the same as your toilet at home.
The difference between a residential and RV toilet is that you can use a residential toilet and do your business there without having to empty your septic tank on a daily basis. While in the case of RV toilet, you have to dispose of the content of the RV’s black tank regularly.
A residential toilet provides you a lever arm that you use for flushing. In the case of RV toilets, it comes with a foot pedal local just beneath the toilet bowl. You have to step on the pedal for it to flush the toilet bowl. An RV toilet consumes a lesser amount of water than a residential toilet.
And the latest models of RV toilets are much more water efficient than the older models; they usually use just a pint of water. There are some RV toilets that include a water sprayer hose which you can use to remove and rinse off those wastes that attached to the side of the bowl.
The waste matter that has been flushed goes to the black tank of the RV. If you are going to use some toilet paper in your RV, you should buy those special kinds of toilet paper, which are specifically made for use in RV. You can even flush this kind of toilet paper as it can be easily and quickly dissolved, which prevents the clogging up of your RV toilet.
If you don’t have this kind of toilet paper, you can just use the regular one but just use a single-ply. To prevent bad odor in your RV toilet, there are chemicals that you can buy in the market that will handle these odors. These chemicals will also break up those fecal matters.
Whatever is the type of toilet you have in your RV it will require to empty the black tank by disposing of the content it has to the proper dumping place or a sewage system. For some cases like in a composting toilet, you just have to dispose of the content to the soil for it to become plant food and fertilizer.
An RV usually have three types of tanks.
- The white tank holds the freshwater.
- Gray tank holds the dirty water from the shower and kitchen.
- The black tank holds the RV toilet’s wastes.
The size of the RV’s black tank will depend on the RV’s dimension. Usually, a large-sized RV comes with a large tank that has a capacity of holding 48 gallons and up to 90 gallons. While a medium may come with a tank having a holding capacity of 32 gallons. Generally, black tanks are attached underneath the RV.
You should empty your RV black tank to a proper waste dumping station regularly like every few days. It is best to dispose of the waste from your tank before you go on to another journey. And the frequency that you have to empty your tank will also depend on how many people are using your toilet.
How to Use These Toilets?
An RV toilet function similarly to the toilet residentially used. But the waste holding tank of an RV toilet is much smaller compared to the tank of a residential toilet. And the tank is of an RV toilet is removable for you dispose of its contents to the proper waste disposal station.
When flushing an RV toilet, a foot pedal is provided that is usually placed at the front of the toilet unit and some at the side. You have to step on the pedal to open the seal and release the water on the bowl to flush down the waste finally. Some RV toilets include a water sprayer to help remove the remaining waste on the side of the bowl.
At the base of the toilet, you will find a seal that odors from the tank being released in your RV.
Installing an RV Toilet
The process doesn’t really require you to seek help from professionals. You can just do it by yourself alone.
These are the steps you can follow to successfully install a toilet in your RV.
- You should clean up the area where you are planning to install the toilet. Remove all those stuff that may get on your way when you are installing the toilet.
Space is important in your RV, so you should remove all the things that are of no use in your RV.
- After you have cleaned the area, shut off the water supply of your RV.
- Place the rubber gasket on the floor where you want your toilet to be installed.
In general, when you buy an RV toilet, the package includes a cone-shaped rubber gasket that will be used to seal the toilet on the floor.
- Place the toilet on top of the rubber gasket and make use that you have lined up the bolts and the bolt holes.
If ever there’s an old toilet in place, you should remove it first by using a wrench to untighten the bolts and a screwdriver to unscrew the screws and pry the old gasket that is sealing the old toilet. After removing the old one, you should put the new one in place.
- Use a wrench to fasten the bolts and nuts tightly. Make sure that you don’t excessively tighten them. Fit the RV toilet snugly in place. And to the toilet, if it doesn’t wobble, sit on the toilet and test it out. If it does wobble a bit, tighten the bolt even more.
- Now, attach the hose to the toilet.
- Finally, turn back on the water supply of your RV.
You have now successfully installed the toilet in your RV. Test it out to see if it is working properly. Perform some adjustments if you need to.
Do You Still Have to Use Toilet Paper?
You can use a regular toilet paper, but make sure to use just a single-ply only to prevent it from clogging in your RV toilet.
In addition, there are toilet papers that are specially made just to be used in RVs. This kind of toilet paper can be flushed into your RV toilet without clogging it up. The paper will just dissolve easily and in no time.
It will be up to you, which type of toilet paper you will use in your RV. Just make sure it won’t be clogged up your RV toilet because it will give you a nasty problem.
The Process of Cleaning RV Toilets
You need to use some toilet cleaner, a sponge or a rag, sanity wipes, a toilet brush and a pair of rubber gloves when you clean your RV toilet. Other RV owners use vinegar instead of toilet cleaner.
To clean the exterior of the toilet, you need to use some kind of cleaning agent to soak the sponge or the rag that you will use to wipe the exterior part of the toilet. You should put much effort into cleaning the seat and its lid.
For the interior, use the toilet bowl cleaner and the brush to scrub the bowl, especially the sides. Scrub it thoroughly to remove mineral deposits and other stains. After doing so, flush the toilet to get rid of the dirty water used in cleaning the bowl.
You must clean your RV toilet regularly to keep it clean and sanitize, and in pristine condition.
Unclogging Your Clogged-Up RV Toilet
A clogged-up toilet is a nasty business, you don’t want it to have in your RV toilet. But unclogging it wouldn’t be that difficult to do.
The main reason for clogged-up toilets is toilet paper. You can try and fix it by yourself, just open the valve and pour some hot water in it. The hot water will go down the pipe and help break up the thing that’s clogging your toilet.
If ever it hasn’t been fixed through your effort, you can call a plumber to ask help in fixing your clogged-up toilet. There are also chemicals that you can use to help you fix this problem, and make sure that they are safe to use.
Replacing your RV Toilet
Most of the time, you don’t have to ask for professional help when replacing your RV toilet. You just do it yourself.
These are the steps you can follow to replace your RV toilet.
- Shut off the water supply of your RV.
- Flush your RV toilet. In this way, the pressure on the water line is minimized.
- At the bottom of the toilet, you’ll find one or even two plastic covers that surround the base. Take them off to reveal a bolt or bolts.
- Unscrew the bolts. In this step, you should make sure not to lift the toilet.
- Find the hose that is attached to the back of the toilet. Then you should get a cloth or a rag and place it below the hose to soak the water that may drip out of it.
- Now, you should unscrew the hose. And take out the RV toilet from the floor, make sure that you pull it upward and the bolts are upright while they are on the floor.
- You should change the rubber gasket. The rubber gasket will seal the toilet on the floor.
- After that, you can now put the new toilet for your RV and make sure that you firmly put it in place. This will prevent it from wobbling.
- And then, line up the bolts and the toilets. Then, screw down the bolts and make use to tighten them.
After you’ve done the steps, you should test out your newly installed replacement toilet by sitting on it. Check the toilet if it doesn’t wobble. If it wobbles, tighten the bolts even more. After doing all these things, you have successfully replaced your old RV toilet with the new one.
Other Important Topics on RV Toilets
There are more things you should know about RV toilets for you to pick the right one and the best one for your RV that will handle your every need. And they are designed to have a companion tank that will hold the waste.
RV Toilet in Your House
This toilet is specifically designed to accommodate the needs of an RV and other camping and traveling vehicles that have a need to carry a toilet. They are smaller compared to a residential toilet to save space in the vehicle as it has only a limited free space.
And RV toilet produces black water that will be stored in the tank. That is why you should dispose of it frequently in a proper waste disposal station because it can be in full capacity quick not like the residential ones that don’t require you to empty is the septic tank daily.
RV toilet for residential use is not that common, but it can be actually done. There are those homeowners who use RV toilets in their home. Using it can save up more space and consumes less water per flushes than the residential toilets.
As RV toilet uses less water per flushes, when using it in your home, you should make sure that the water used to flush the waste in the toilet can also handle some minimal blockage in the sewer line. Else, you will have to perform multiple flushes to successfully remove it and prevent it from clogging up.
Residential Toilet in Your RV
It is actually possible to use a residential toilet in your RV, but it is not highly recommended to be used in RVs as it may bring problems and concerns. Residential toilets are most of the time accompanied by a heavy flush tank while an RV toilet doesn’t have any.
Your RV will have to navigate some sharp turns and winding roads; it will also face some bumpy roads. Using a residential toilet in your RV isn’t one of the best ideas as it will be easily damaged by the movement of the RV. Especially the residential toilets have a porcelain base which won’t survive that long before breaking. You just use it for a short while then it will be full of damages.
Residential toilets are designed to be used in a stationary position, and in turn; RV toilets are specifically designed to handle movements. In addition, there is a big difference between the two when it comes to water consumption. Residential toilets consume way a lot more water than the RV toilets.
Generally, a residential one will use one and 1/2 gallon of water while an RV toilet will use only half of a gallon of water per flushes. So, a residential tank will surely hold more water up to three times more than an RV toilet.
You should worry that you won’t be as comfortable when you use an RV toilet to the one in your house, as there are now RV toilets that make you feel at home. You have the option of selecting a porcelain bowl as it is easy to clean. Also, their RV toilets that have a seating height the same with a standard residential toilet.
Keep Your RV Toilet Smelling Good All the Time
No matter how durable or even if it comes with the highest quality RV toilet, sooner, or later, it will produce some awful and unwanted smell.
Even though you have properly flushed or applied some kind of RV toilet bowl cleaners in the toilet bowl and the tank, you can’t avoid that some foul and unwanted smell from your toilet will fill your RV or other camping vehicles in the long run.
Luckily, there are some ways that you do to avoid the foul smell from filling your RV and keeps your toilet smell better all the time.
If there’s a smell in your RV, what you need to do is trace where it is coming from. Most of the time this is caused by a damaged waste tank or there’s a leaking in your toilet. If you’ve traced it and know the cause, seek for professional help to fix this problem.
Another common cause for the smell to leak in your RV is a clogged toilet. A clogged toilet or not cleaning the toilet regularly is the reason for the smell; you can just fix it by yourself. For a clogged toilet, you should remove the thing that is clogging your toilet. To do this, you just empty the tank and take out the cause of the clog and the reason for the smell in your RV.
Also, you need to scrub the tank to clean it thoroughly. Cleaning the tank is necessary to remove the unwanted smell, especially when there are waste matters that have attached themselves to the sides of the tank. To remove the foul smell completely, use this product “Spic and Span” and mix it with water.
The product will help in cleaning the inside of the tank and remove those materials that are attached to the sides which cause some odor.
If the smell still persists even after doing the things above, the other possible reason for that is the flapper which is integrated into the RV toilet is not closed completely. This commonly happens when a piece of toilet paper has gotten itself stuck below the rim.
To deal with it, just soak a rag with water then thoroughly wipe the surrounding area of the flapper (under it and in) using the water-soaked rag. Doing this will remove all the things that have been caught in it.
But if all the things above don’t really work, the best action you need to do is to hire a professional to deal with this problem. And the worst-case scenario, you need to replace your RV toilet.
Chemical for your RV Toilet
You should take note that RV toilet chemicals refer to those bacteria and enzyme composition. These chemicals are then added to the black tank of your RV, which will break down the tissue and waste inside the tank.
Breaking down of the contents of the tank is important to make it easy for you to dispose of the contents of the tank when needed. It also prevents the contents of the tank to clump or clog up.
To use these RV toilet chemicals, the first thing you should do is to pour a few gallons of water into the black tank. This is done to have a good base that is composed of water in the tank. This is important as it is not advisable to use the toilet if it doesn’t have a good base.
And without the base, it will be just a matter of time before the waste in the tank will clump up which causes clogging and incorrect reading of the tank meter.
After you have poured the few gallons of water in the tank, then flush the toilet using the flushing valve. Then, you should put in the chemicals which usually come in a tablet form or liquid form. After a few moments, your RV toilet is now ready for you to use.
The Different Types of RV Toilets
As there are different RV toilet types, you should know their differences in order for you to decide well on which type you should choose for your RV. Take in to account your RV needs and your personal taste when deciding on the toilet.
- Cartridge or Cassette RV Toilet.
A popular RV toilet among European RV owners and now the North Americans who are catching up. This type of RV toilet is mostly used by some RV owners due to the fact that this toilet is simply easy to use. Regarding its tank, its content should be disposed of frequently.
Less than 5 gallons is the capacity of the cartridge or cassette RV toilet’s holding tank. It is much smaller than a regular toilet for RV. To let you know that the tank is at full capacity, a light indicator is added. Then you will have to empty the tank to a waste dumping station.
And for the case of the cassette toilet, you can even empty the tank in a public restroom. Cassette toilet is permanently fixed to your RV, unlike the portable type of RV toilet.
- Composting RV Toilet.
Lots of RV owners are comfortable at the idea that their waste matters are right away composted in their own RV. This led them to stay away from this type of RV toilet. But most of these RV owners don’t have a correct and clear understanding of how this type of toilet really works.
The composting toilet comes with an environment-friendly way to deal with your waste matters while you are in the middle of your journey. And you won’t have to worry about the smell as long as the composting toilet is working as expected.
This toilet is self-contained, and it doesn’t make use of water, which makes this ideal for places where no supply of water can be found nearby, especially remote areas.
The composting RV toilet works like this, solids and liquids are being separated. The solid matters are converted into humus. This will be deposited into the soil.
- Gravity Flushed RV Toilet.
This type of RV toilet comes with a simple design and is used by most RV owners in their RV. This toilet works exactly like residential toilets. When you flush this toilet, it will pull the waste matter down through the use of gravity.
- Macerating Flush RV Toilet.
This toilet has motor-powered blades that come with it. These blades will break down your waste into tiny bits of pieces or turn into a slurry before it goes to the RV’s black tank.
- Portable RV Toilet.
This type of RV toilet is lightweight and smaller in size. It is mostly made of plastic or even a stainless material. This toilet also comes with a holding tank for your waste.
The bottom part of the tank can be removed when you have to dispose of its contents, which can be reattached to the main part right after emptying it.
This RV toilet is ideal for you if you are camping or going to places that are far from a waste dumping station.
- Vacuum Flushed RV Toilet.
The way this toilet works is closely similar to how a macerating type of toilet works. The only difference is the vacuum pump. The pump will dissolve the waste matters of your toilet before pushing it to the black tank of your RV.
This type is convenient for you as you can just put it anywhere you want it to be in your RV not like most RV toilets that should place in a dedicated area.
You can have more than one toilet in your RV. And you can have a combination of the types above for better comfort in your RV while on the road.
Some of The Best Brands of RV Toilets
Lots of RV brands that offer you high-quality with the best performance RV toilets. You should make sure to check all the benefits you’ll get with the particular RV toilet. Also, you should know the downsides of it.
Here are some of the best RV toilet brands you’ll find on the market (they are listed in any other).
- Nature’s Head
- Porta Potti
You can browse through the RV toilets from the brands listed above in the Review Section of this guide.
Besides the brands above there are still other brands that can handle your needs and satisfy your taste. You should choose wisely.
The Things You Should Consider Before You Buy an RV Toilet
You might have a hard time selecting the best toilet for your RV, as there lots of types and models within each type that you can choose from. You should put a lot of time and effort into deciding which one you will buy. This is to avoid getting into those awful situations with the RV toilet.
So, here you will know what the factors in your RV are that you should take into consideration before you decide to choose that one toilet.
- The available space for the toilet.
Be sure that you match the toilet size the available space in your RV. If your free space for the toilet is just a little, choose those toilets that are smaller in size as they won’t take much of your available space. You can have a gravity flush toilet; this toilet is ideal for small spaces. Also, there are now compact models for some vacuum and macerating toilets.
- The elderly folks on your RV.
To accommodate their needs, you should pick a toilet that comes with a taller seating height. The low ones will make them uncomfortable when they use it.
- The place you’ll be going to and the duration of your stay.
A long journey will take much of your time on the road. So, you will have to do your business more often while you are on the road. To handle this situation, an extra tank will be the best thing you should bring within your travel if you have a portable RV toilet or a cassette toilet. Also, it will be hard to find a waste dumping station.
If you are staying in remote areas, equip your RV with a portable or cassette type of RV toilet.
When you have taken into consideration, all the factor listed above, what will be going to do next is to decide what features of the toilet you’ll be needing in your RV. Research the features the toilet will offer you, make sure you fully know the benefits you can get from that toilet before deciding to buy it.
As there are lots of types and models of RV toilets readily available in the market today, you should be selective about them. You can decide with regards to their looks, the color or the design but make sure put the basic qualities on top of the looks when deciding to buy the toilet.
Here are the basic qualities of an RV toilet that you should take into account.
- Installation process.
There are RV toilets that are just easy to install. You don’t have to guess anymore on how to install it; you just have to follow the instructions from the manual to properly do it and in just a few minutes.
- The Flush power and coverage.
Select those toilets that bring powerful flush every time you need it and a 100% bowl coverage to make sure that your toilet bowl is thoroughly cleaned.
- The toilet’s wide bowl.
Make sure to choose the RV toilet with a wide bowl. There are some RV toilets that will make you uncomfortable when you use them, as they wobble sitting on them or feels like they will topple over.
- Cleaning the toilet.
Buy the ones that are easy to clean. RV owners don’t usually select toilets with plastic seats because the plastic will stain, it can be hard to clean it, and it won’t ever go away. Also, they look dirty
Pick those RV toilets that are sturdy as they will be with you for a long time.
This guide has given you the important knowledge to pick the best RV toilet. Now, you know the factors that you should consider and the features to match with your RV needs and your personal taste before deciding to buy the toilet.
Also, the review section may help you find the one that is for your RV. You can browse through the list any time you want.
You should research first, know more about the RV toilet. Check what are the benefits it offers you and the downside of that toilet before you buy it.