Maintaining your Ecolet composting toilet
The EcoLet should be examined regularly to ensure correct operation. The key areas to be checked are listed below:
- Check ventilation fan is running
- Check there is no access liquid in the compost chamber and pedestal.
Removing The ChamberThe active compost chamber should be replaced with an empty one when it is approximately 75% full or when the pile is approximately 200 mm from top of the toilet seat.
- Remove the top of pedestal and close chamber lid.
- Swing the handle upright and lift the chamber out from the pedestal. When lifting the chamber, please be aware that there may be liquid dripping off from the chamber floor holes.
- Place the chamber outside for secondary composting. The chamber should be placed in a warm sunny position preferably in warm area such as directly under the sunlight and where direct access is restricted.
- Put the empty second chamber in the pedestal. Remove the chamber lid and keep it in a safe place.
- Add humus mixture.
- Put back the pedestal lid.
- EcoLet is ready to be used again.
When Do I Empty The Secondary Chamber?
As a general rule, you should leave the material in the compost chamber as long as possible. The EcoLet has been designed for 2 people full time where the average monthly temperature is greater than 18° C in any given month. Under these conditions the full chamber should only require a maximum of 60 days before it is ready for emptying.
Compost temperature is a significant factor in the time required for composting process. The higher the temperature within the optimum range, the faster the compost process. As a reference, 50 days is required to reach 50% decomposition with a compost temperature ranging between 22-24°C.
When ready for disposal the composted end product should not contain recognizable faecal material and there should be no offensive odours immediately after removing the chamber lid. If there is more than 2 people using the toilet or you are in a colder area then additional compost chambers may be required. Additional compost chambers can be purchased from Clivus Multrum.
How Do I Dispose The Composted End Product?
Ecolet recommends wearing protective clothing whenever handling waste products. Recommended protective clothing includes gloves, appropriate footwear, a face mask and ideally eye protection. You should dispose of the composted waste in accordance with any and all local authority regulations. All composted product should be handled and treated with caution as there is a risk of exposure to pathogens particularly if the product is not properly composted.
For an on-site burial of composted end product, it should be undertaken in a location where direct access by human and animals are restricted. It should be buried with a minimum cover of 100mm in soil that is not intended to be used for the cultivation of root vegetables or near a water catchment area.
Adding Bulking Material
It is important to add bulking material into your toilet, we suggest 1 cup per day directly into the compost chamber. This amount is based on two people using the system full time. In time of heavy use, or if the liquid is not draining well through the compost, or if compost appears too dry, we suggest you mix the additional humus mixture through the compost pile.
By mixing the solid waste, paper and bulking material, the compost will be kept porous and moist, the supply of oxygen will increase, which substantially speeds up the transformation of waste materials into humus.
Humus mixture recipe
Fine Grade Peat Moss 20% + Untreated wood shavings 80%
Bulking material: Untreated wood shavings or other carbon rich material. (Sawdust is not recommended)
If insects have entered into your compost, you should sprinkle an insect control powder or any other long lasting pyrethrum based product over the compost chamber.
Use mild detergents on your EcoLet NE. Never use scouring powder or other strong detergents that could scratch the surface, or kill off your good bacteria. We recommend green friendly or septic safe products.
Never put cigarettes or other burning material, tampons or sanitary napkins into your toilet!