There are many reasons why you should consider buying a portable toilet if you intend long road trips or spend a lot of outdoor time. Camping and road tripping in motor homes and campervans are some of the world’s leading pastimes. Toilets make life so much easier on the road.

If you’re still not persuaded, here are the top 11 reasons why you should buy a portable toilet for camping.

Once you have made the purchasing decision, it’s equally important to understand how to use it and how to take care of it.

If you reuse a relatively primitive camping toilet, the toilet you buy would require chemicals to keep it as clean and efficient as possible. The waste that is stored in the holding tank must also be handled until such time that it is drained.

All toilets have different levers in different locations but the operating procedure to enter the tanks is identical in a general sense.

Need some chemicals? Yeah, you are. Even if you have at your camping toilet the largest possible tank, or even those installed into RVs, you will still need chemicals to handle the waste. The waste tank on portable camping toilets is just below the cover, which means that the tank’s contents are close to you!

THE WASTE TANK The waste tank (most generally located at the bottom of a portable toilet) uses chemical substances to treat / break down the waste which also helps with emptying. It also helps eliminate odors, and reduces the build-up of carbon.

The tanks all have different capacities and the user will have to keep a manual check on when the tanks need emptying, unless there is a visual gauge.

Tip: Remember to always dump your waste tank at an appropriate spot.

It’s important to ensure that the sliding valve between the tank and the bowl is closed off before emptying the tank. If the valve is open, then the tank will not disengage. Use the handle to pull the tank out, and screw the cap off at the top. If there is a revolving spout in your toilet, first rotate it, then remove the screw cap.

Chemicals must be added to the waste tank before it is first used and every time the tank is drained, afterwards. These can be inserted through the open waste valve on top of the tank, or through the emptying sputum.

When clean, make sure you do a good flush out to the waste tank.

Use the liquid chemical tablets or the drop-in tablets as indicated on their labels. When the chemical is applied water should also be added to the tank. Don’t put only the chemical in the tank when it’s dry / empty.

THE FRESH WATER TANK Chemicals for rinsing should be applied to the fresh water tank too. Such chemicals cover the bowl with a protective layer to help keep it clean, and also lubricate the seals to prevent wear and tear.

TOILET PAPER Do I need to use purpose-made toilet fabric or is ordinary toilet fabric ok? The use of specially formulated toilet fabric for chemical toilets helps to reduce damage and blockage to the waste tank. It is biodegradable, as well. In addition, since it will disintegrate, it won’t fill your waste tank as easily, which means less need for emptying.

If you are going to use anything other than what is specified for your toilet, be mindful that your warranty could be voided.


The toilet has to be cleaned when it will not be in service. The last thing you want is a toilet to be sitting around for any period of time, unused particularly with contents in the waste tank.

Empty the tanks of waste and water, give a good clean and then allow to dry before putting together again. For help with odor control, a small amount of deodorant and water may be placed into the waste tank.

Never leave water in the water tank if not in use, particularly at cold temperatures because it can freeze and harm the toilet.

In freezing conditions, it may be necessary to add antifreeze to the toilet.

Toilet chemicals come in liquid form as well as tablets. All of them are biodegradable, and are easy to use. It’s really just down to your choice on which one you’re using.

Don’t ever use chemicals that are not specifically designed for it to take proper care of your portable toilet. Regular, commercial cleaners may be abrasive and may include additives that may cause seals and valves to deteriorate in the rubbers.

Using the right, approved toilet chemicals will help keep your toilet clean while preserving and maintaining all of its components.

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