How To Empty And Clean A Portable Toilet Effectively

One aspect of using a portable toilet - whether for camping or any other outdoor event - many people don't like to talk about is cleaning.

If you've ever seen anyone go about this chore before, then you will agree that their reaction is anything but enjoyable.

Maybe they consider it a taboo to actually handle their own poo poo or perhaps they don't know how to do it without making it look like a big deal.

Whatever the case is, the fact still remains that as long as you are using a porta potty, you will need to clean it every once in a while.

Without regular cleaning and maintenance, a portable toilet can became a terrible eyesore that is even worse than the shit it holds.

Usually, most people clean their toilets once they notice the reservoir tank is getting full or when they want to store the potty away for a long time.

So how do you go about the whole thing without looking faint hearted?

Follow the steps below to properly clean and empty your portable toilet. You might not read anything like this in the so called user manuals.

Let's not waste any more time an get your feet wet into the steps quick!

Step 1: Locate the base opening of the toilet waste reservoir and add the required chemicals through it. This usually consists of a good disinfectant to sanitize the area and a powerful deodorant to quench the smell of poo poo.

Direct pouring of the chemicals into the toilet bowl must be avoided by all means.

Step 2: Next thing is to pump water from the top section of the toilet to flush the reservoir. The toilet bowl should be on the receiving end.

Step 3:Now, you can get rid of the resulting waste or water into the bottom reservoir. To accomplish this, locate the "T" lever and pull it.

Once the water has been emptied, return the lever to its closed position again.

Step 4: Next thing to do is to separate the top and bottom sections of the toilet. To do this, you have to unlatch the clips on both sides of the porta potty and then separate the top and bottom.

Step 5: Time to carry the waste reservoir - which forms the major part of the bottom section - to any dumping station around.

Both top and bottom sections can be carried separately by taking hold of the handles on their rear.

Step 6: To empty the toilet reservoir, first unscrew the round cap on its rear. Make sure the "T" handle is pushed in all the while to prevent the content of the reservoir from pouring out.

Step 7: After emptying the content of the toilet reservoir at the dump site - which could be a local septic tank, an indoor toilet, or an RV dumping station - use a garden hose to wash both sections (top and bottom) thoroughly.

Make sure you wash off every trace of used deodorant and disinfectant.

Step 8: Then add a new dose of chemicals and a small amount of fresh water to the cleaned system to prevent bad odour and ensure proper sanitation. Your Porta Potty is finally ready for use again.

Make sure you keep up to a regular cleaning schedule in order to maintain the right hygiene so that the portable toilet is suitable for re-use.

Whenever you want to store the toilet away, make sure you clean it thoroughly following the steps above.

However, don't fill it again with new chemicals or clean water. Instead leave it empty and store in a convenient location in your home or RV.

How To Make Your Own Portable Toilet?


Whether you’re operating on a tight budget or you just want to get your hands dirty, constructing your own portable toilet will help ensure the survival of your spouse and kids when out in the wild and nature calls.

When it comes to DIY porta potty, there are usually two options you choose from – the pool noodle portable toilet or the toilet seat portable toilet.

To get started, follow the steps below;

The Pool Noodle Option

The Pool Noodle portable toilet is the cheapest way to quickly set up a toilet for camping or emergency situations. Its major advantage is that it uses a pool noodle for its seat, which is not easily affected by cold weather.

However, the toilet requires a lot of maintenance in order for it not to rot sooner due to the weather. Luckily, all the supplies required to build the toilet can be sourced from your home or a nearby local store.

Items Needed:

  • 5 gallon bucket
  • Sawdust (or a cat litter) to absorb moisture and smell
  • Some heavy duty trash bags or any bucket liner of your choice. The bucket liner should be biodegradable so that you can easily dispose it by burying when it’s no longer useful.
  • A pool noodle
  • Your favourite toilet paper (make sure it’s ultra-soft), though this is optional
  • A good knife and pair of pliers


1. Remove the bucket handle by tugging it out. Then use a plier to bend the tip so that it would be easier to attach it again later.

2. Choose a drill hole three fingers away from the two connector ports on the top layer of the bucket. Ensure the holes are equally spaced from each other and the drill doesn’t get to the bucket wall.

3. Next, fit your toilet paper through the dismantled bucket handle. Then lock the handles again by pushing the tips into the new ports you just made. This completes your toilet roll holder.

4. Line up your bucket using either a heavy duty trash bag or any liner of your choice. If you are using a trash bag (sack), make sure they are large enough to hold much shit or waste. We recommend going for those that are about 1.5x2.5 ft.

5. For the trash bag – put into the bucket line with the top ridge of the container just like you do with your trash can at home. Do the same if you are using a liner. Make sure both fits in perfectly.

6. Make the toilet seat by cutting a pool noodle lengthwise, about 3 ft. A slit should go down the side to ensure a comfortable experience.

7. Attach the pool noddle to the container by fitting over the edge.

8. Your pool noddle porta potty is ready for use.

Note: If you don’t want to drill another hole, just pull one side of the handle out. Then attach the toilet tissue and connect back.

The Toilet Seat Option

The toilet seat porta potty offers an easier way of setting up an emergency relief system.

Though it takes less time to construct than the pool noodle toilet, it attracts additional cost.

The major advantage of the emergency toilet seat portable potty is that it looks and feels like your normal home toilets without the bucket. More so, it comes with a lid which allows you to cover your shit after use.

In other words, the toilet seat potty is not only easier to build, but offers a cleaner option than the pool noddle option.

Items Needed;

  • 5 gallon bucket
  • Sawdust (or clumping cat litter)
  • Some heavy duty trash bags or any bucket liner of your choice
  • A toilet seat specially designed for emergency situations. You should be able to find one in any good hardware store around.
  • Ultra soft toilet paper (should be packed with your gear)


1. Line up the bucket with a liner of your choice. The top of the liner should drap over the sides of the container.

2. Next, place the toilet seat you bought on top of the bucket with the liner. You can also use a garbage bag for the same purpose. The process is basically the same with the one we described above for the pool noddle toilet.

3. Next, secure the seat with the bucket following the instructions contained in the manual that came with the toilet seat.

4. Pour some sawdust or cat litter into the bottom of the liner before you use the toilet for the first time.

5. Bring down the toilet lid. Your mobile relief system is all set.

Note: In case you want to add a toilet roll handle for easy access, follow the same procedure described above for the pool noddle potty.

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