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Old 02-20-2013, 01:44 PM   #1
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Teach me about toilets...

I'm looking at the options that Escape offers, and faced with deciding between the different A/B plans that have or don't have built-in toilets/showers. But I have no experience with trailers with toilet facilities, so making an informed decision is kind of tough.

Three options present: built-in toilet with black-water system, porta-potti, or nothing at all.

The wife says "nothing at all" isn't an option, so that makes that decision easy...

So teach me about porta-potties and black water systems...

I'm guessing that a full toilet with black-water system is not as fool-proof as the toilet in your house. I don't think there's a trap in the waste line and I assume they're designed to flush with as little water as possible, so I'd guess you'd occasionally get a whiff of sewer gas in the bathroom when you flush. Is that true? Is it sufficient to leave the fan running into the bathroom to keep a little positive pressure? Or is there some other trick that people use to avoid this problem?

How onerous is it to empty the black water tank?

What are the common problems with these toilets and tanks?

How good are porta-potties at containing the smell? How difficult are they to maintain? How often do you need to maintain them?

Thanks. Any information you can send me way will be appreciated.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:10 PM   #2
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I don't have any experience with the " porta poti " option but here is my take on the toilet/black tank. Correct there is no trap so when you flush the door opens straight into the black tank, with a small amount of effort to keep things clean and rinsed the odors are very minimal. dumping the tanks is very easy once you get the hang of it, I would strongly recomend the window in the bathrooom to feed a hose through for rinsing the tank while dumping.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:21 PM   #3
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My experience with a porta poti was some 30 years ago, so maybe things have changed.
To empty it I had to attach a hose from it into the septic, holding that in place with one foot, and then tip the porta poti and hold open the flush valve at the same time. It created a suction and wouldn't empty without the valve being open. Then the unit slipped out of my grip, causing me to lose my balance, lifting my foot and allowing the hose to fire excrement in all directions.

I never want to see another porta poti, ever.

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Old 02-20-2013, 03:27 PM   #4
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The Porta Porta option is fairly simple but you obviously don't have anything like the capacity of the black water. The "holding" tank holds, I think, about two gallons and is detachable from the seat/water container. Again it is a direct flow down to the tank with a hand pump action to flush. This type of toilet takes up very little room and can be stored in a cabinet. From past experience it is preferable that the Porta potti does not have to be lifted in order to get it out of the cabinet, there are plenty of methods to retain it whilst traveling. I'm sure you will get plenty of advice but go with your instincts! If you plan to be hooked up every night then everyday showers are an option, if you are not then you would seriously want to consider the water capacity of your trailer and how often you can replenish that supply. Again a lesser option is an outdoor shower, you won't need the extra weight of a gray water tank. Have fun
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:33 PM   #5
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Baglo that's called "Getting your own back". More modern potties have a port on the bottom to which a short 2 1/2" pipe, which is stored underneath, is attached. It is then a simple matter of turning the tank on its end and aiming it at the hole at the dump site, quick, easy and no muddy feet.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:35 PM   #6
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Thanks for the replies everybody.

With respect to the grey water tank... How do you deal with water down the sink if you don't have a grey water tank?
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:41 PM   #7
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GBaglo's experience paint's a pretty funny picture , I think they have evolved a bit - but they are pretty basic and very easy to empty . One can buy a toilet chem ( environmentally friendly one) to use with either a built in or a porta-potti ( porta-potti does flush also ) . We've never had a smell issue with either system . We've had both . If we were going to do a lot of boon docking we would have chosen a built in ( also if we would have wanted the shower ). It is inconvenient to unhook and head to the dumping station if one is staying in a particular location for a long time (say more than a week - depending on uses/ people ) but the dumping process is easy - just takes more time than emptying a porta-potti . Porta-potti we tend to empty daily if used - which would actually be only over night .
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:47 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbailey View Post
Thanks for the replies everybody.

With respect to the grey water tank... How do you deal with water down the sink if you don't have a grey water tank?
There will be a drain outlet on the driver side to which one hooks up a hose for drain away or into a sewer hook-up.
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:49 PM   #9
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The gray water is easy from the kitchen sink it is fed to an outlet where you attach a 90deg.
And a 2 or 2 1/2 pipe, can't remember which and we put that into an old water container. When that fills we empty it appropriately. Some don't bother with the bottle and then it becomes ground water. Gabeck's reply gives the perfect scenario but that would be in a serviced site I think.
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Old 02-20-2013, 04:02 PM   #10
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The gray water is easy from the kitchen sink it is fed to an outlet where you attach a 90deg.
And a 2 or 2 1/2 pipe, can't remember which and we put that into an old water container. When that fills we empty it appropriately. Some don't bother with the bottle and then it becomes ground water. Gabeck's reply gives the perfect scenario but that would be in a serviced site I think.
Hi... we do mostly go for full service - however we have also been told we do not need to have the hose into the sewer as the amount of grey water coming from our set up is so minimal . But we don't like to mess up the area we are in.
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