5 Portable Camping Toilets For Under $250
The pandemic has taught us many lessons, but one of the most unusual might be that having a personal potty in your camping vehicle is a wonderful thing.
When the initial shutdowns began, many public restrooms were closed and unavailable for use. Having a portable camping toilet was more valuable than a 12-pack of toilet paper.
My husband and I entered the pandemic with a Thetford Porta Potti (see number 4 on this list) that we carry around in our 13-foot trailer. While on the road and denied access to gas station and restaurant bathrooms, there were several times when I kissed my Thetford right on its shiny, white lid.
Many RV owners are lucky to have a built-in bathroom complete with a comfy commode and large waste tanks. But some smaller RVs don’t come with a bathroom or even a toilet. This is especially true for van conversions, buses, teardrop trailers, small standy campers, truck and SUV campers, and even tents. These types of rigs are usually built out by the owner or a company and a bathroom just will not fit.
However, there are several ways to have a personal toilet in whatever camper you decide to buy or build. In addition, they don’t have to be a Home Depot bucket lined with plastic bags. Creating a specific space for a toilet doesn’t have to be difficult and doesn’t have to take up a lot of room. The best part is that portable camping toilets are just that—portable. They don’t require connections to grey or black tanks or any electrical components.
How do you empty portable toilets?
The cons of these portable camping toilets is that they will not fit a lot of waste. Used sparingly, they can last for several days. However, if they are used several times a day by several people, they do need to be cleaned out much more often. And it’s not the most fun job in the world.
Portable camping toilets need to be carried to dump stations or restrooms and emptied into appropriate receptacles. If you just use a camping toilet for #1, most of the time they can just be rinsed out and dumped onto the ground away from campsites. If you use a portable toilet for #2, please use a dump station or public toilet to empty the contents.
While they can’t hold a candle to a regular RV toilet, these small potties are pretty affordable. Our Thetford potty was under $100 and can contain waste for several days.
The list below includes only portable camping toilets that cost under $250. Each of these toilets have holding tanks that keep in odors and separate tanks that hold water and deodorizer for flushing capabilities. They are also small enough to fit discreetly under a bed or in a storage cabinet.
This toilet by Camco is surprisingly affordable for what you get. On Amazon it hovers around $60 which makes it one of the cheapest options.
Made of polyethylene, the toilet has a sealing slide lock to keep in odors and prevent leaking. It has a carrying handle and a bellow flush. The holding tank is a roomy 5.3 gallons and it can hold 2.5 gallons of water in the flush tank. It is almost 16 inches tall, so it will require a larger space to hold it.
Most camping toilets will never win a design award, but the Thetford 565e just might be in the running. This stylish looking potty doesn’t just look nice, but it works better for taller RV owners.
Coming in at nearly 19 inches in height, this toilet doesn’t require too much crouching. It can hold 5.5 gallons of waste and holds 4 gallons of flush water. The coolest things about this toilet is that the flush is battery operated and there is also a small toilet paper compartment. It also comes in at under $200.
For less than $150, the Alpcour camping toilet has a few amenities that other camping toilets lack. This toilet has the typical size water tank (3.2 gallons) and waste tank (5.3 gallon), but it also has a sprayer for easy cleanup.
The sprayer can be used for both helping waste to go down the drain and for cleaning the entire unit. The Alpcour also has a handy carrying bag and a waste level indicator.
If space is at a premium, Thetford offers smaller versions of their Porta Potti. The 345 has a 4 gallon water tank and a 3.2 gallon waste tank. The 335 has 2.6 gallon tanks for both fresh water and waste water.
Both of these potties are around 13 inches tall, so they can fit under a bed. They are both easy to carry when full and come with piston flushes and easy to lock tanks. Both of them are around $120 to $150 depending on where you shop.
The Dometic company makes some of the best RV appliances available including a portable toilet. What sets this toilet apart is that the flush mechanism is a button which requires less pumping action. The 976 is made of ABS, a high-strength thermoplastic polymer.
The toilet also comes in two tank capacities: 2.6 gallon and 5 gallon. Each model comes with tank level monitor and some come with clamps for locking the toilet onto a floor or inside a drawer. With prices of around $125 to $150, these toilets offer a lot in a small package.
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