Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1:     Why choose a Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet?
Q2:     Why choose an EcoLet waterless composting toilet?
Q3:     How does it work?
Q4:     How do I get Council approval?
Q5:     Which system is right for me?
Q6:     Is climate important when selecting the right system?
Q7:     How is the Clivus Multrum™ waterless composting toilet installed?
Q8:     Can toilets on the first and second story of my house connect into the one compost chamber?
Q9:     What if there is no power at my site?
Q10:   Does it smell?
Q11:   Is it easy to clean?
Q12:   Is it energy efficient?
Q13:   Will you save money?
Q14:   Is it easy to access?
Q15:   How does the ventilation system work?
Q16:   What are the pedestal specifications?
Q17:   How do we deal with household greywater?
Q18:   How much airflow does the fan create ?
Q19:   How environmentally friendly is the Clivus Multrum and the EcoLet?
Q20:   Why supplied a 150 mm diameter vent system with Clivus Multrum CM 8 – 40 range? 
Q21:   What’s the standard vent fan for CM2?

 

Q1: Why choose a Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet?

A: 5 reasons why a Clivus Multrum is the best choice in waterless composting toilets:

  • You may need the most practical option for a site with limited water supply, or where rocky or poor draining soil is present, or where proximity to waterways may mean that discharge from septic systems is not permitted.
  • You may need to provide a public facility that is self-contained, can cope with variable usage and requires minimal maintenance.
  • You want a cost-effective system that is easily installed and cared for.
  • You may be firmly committed to using ecologically sustainable ways of living, and are aware of the damage that conventional water-based systems are ultimately doing to our waterways. You wouldn't choose anything but a composting toilet.
  • With a Clivus Multrum Service and Support Plan for commercial and public facilities, you can be assured that your toilets are kept clean and in good working condition.

We designed it to be all that and more!  Our unique design features and after sales support mean better performance, resulting in the most reliable and efficient waterless composting toilet.

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Q2: Why choose an EcoLet waterless composting toilet? 

A: The EcoLet range of waterless composting toilets are designed specifically for buildings on concrete slabs, as they don’t require a compost chamber below the toilet room. The EcoLet has been proudly sold in Australia for over 15 years, and is the natural solution for holiday homes, sheds, weekenders, poolside amenities and caravans.

EcoLet waterless composting toilets are small, all-in-one, attractive appliances, constructed from durable, easy to clean ABS plastic and non-corroding metals.

EcoLet waterless composting toilets use modern technology to accelerate and optimise natural biological decomposition, evaporate excess liquid and to exhaust odours and water vapour, all within an attractive home appliance that is easy to use and economical to operate.

All models have a compost cover that covers the toilet bowl when not in use and opens automatically when the seat is pressed down.

When you choose an EcoLet waterless composting toilet you will use no chemicals or water, you will not need a septic tank, and best of all, there is no odour!

Instead of polluting our precious waterways, the waste produced from the EcoLet waterless composting toilet is transformed into rich humus for your garden.  Perfect solution!

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Q3: How does it work?

A: The process works on the same principle as an ordinary garden compost bin. Waste is collected into the composting toilet chamber along with carbon rich material such as wood shavings and garden clippings.

Here the materials gradually decompose in the chamber's aerated environment. Baffles and air channels in the composting toilet tank control airflow and this accelerates the composting process. The End Result: Safe, Clean Compost!

The organic hummus end-product is simply removed via a large hatch at the front of the composting tank and can be dug into the garden. In domestic circumstances this is usually necessary only once or twice a year; some households have found it unnecessary to remove any compost for up to two years. After a year or more in the processor the compost is safe to handle, has a fresh earthy smell, and feels and looks much like regular garden compost.

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Q4: How do I get Council approval?

A: Start by seeking the advice and regulations from your local council plumbing officer. This normally involves having a geotechnical engineer carry out a soil test and drawing up a site plan. Assuming your toilet is state approved, the council is normally more interested in what you plan to do with your grey water than with the toilet. The council cannot refuse an application for an approved toilet unless there is a site specific issue such as proximity to a water course.

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Q5: Which system is right for me? 

A:  To choose the right waterless composting toilet system, you need to understand what size chamber you require; the larger the compost tank, the greater its usage capacity.

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Q6: Is climate important when selecting the right system? 

A: The capacity of any waterless composting toilet is affected by temperature. The compost heap will generate its own heat, and if this heat can be retained in the tank the process will be more efficient. The cooler the temperature of the air around and entering the composting chamber, the slower the rate of decomposition will be and this in turn may lower the number of users a system can serve.

In regions where the annual mean temperature is below 18ºC, we recommend that a larger Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet unit be installed or that special installation provisions are made for warming the tank.

Warming the compost tank or the air flowing into it can be done in several ways:

  • Facing the building basement toward the sun so the air in the basement is heated naturally;
  • Piping warm air from inside the building to the air intake of the tank;
  • Insulating the tank or basement; or
  • In extremely cold locations, heating of the basement by solar air heaters or other means may be warranted.

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Q7: How is the Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet installed?

A: When installing the Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet, take into account the following considerations:-

  • Is more than one toilet required?

Toilet rooms that are side by side can usually be serviced by the one compost chamber, although with the CM8 there is less flexibility. As the toilet pedestals are connected by vertical chutes to the compost tank, pedestals that are some distance apart will need a separate tank each.

   

  • Is there access beneath the toilet room?

Because the waterless compost tank must be positioned under the toilet room, there needs to be access to this area. On a sloping site, partial excavation can be used to obtain the clearances needed to install and service the tank. Alternatively, a cellar or retaining walls can be built. Locating the tank adjacent to an exterior wall can make access easier for servicing it.

  • Does the ground slope away so the excess liquid can be removed?

It is important that the compost tank always has good drainage and does not flood from surface water or with rising ground water. The drain pipe for excess liquid from the tank must slope down to its discharge point into a soakage trench or other disposal method.

The volume of excess liquid will depend on several factors, but should not exceed 1 litre per person per day. In domestic installations there is frequently no excess liquid at all. Clivus Multrum can also provide reliable pump-out systems if natural drainage cannot be achieved.

  

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Q8: Can toilets on the first and second story of my house connect into the one compost chamber?

A:  Yes, but the chutes must be vertical. Extra lengths of chute will be necessary for the second floor toilet and a longer ventilation pipe will be needed.

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Q9: What if there is no power at my site?

A: Some units are run successfully with no power and just a turbo ventilator. In these instances Clivus Multrum cannot guarantee continual odourless operation.

If mains power is not available a solar power package can be supplied to run the fan either 24 hours a day or just during daylight hours. Clivus Multrum can also provide solar kits for house lighting and remote public buildings.

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Q10: Does it smell? 

A: Absolutely not!! A small electric fan in the vent pipe creates airflow within the system and ensures that any toilet room smells are drawn away - leaving fewer odours than even a flush toilet.

Do we have to use chemicals?

No! The decomposition process is a totally natural one. Chemicals are not used as they would only harm the various composting organisms.

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Q11: Is it easy to clean?

A: The Clivus Multrum is Easily Cleaned - the handmade toilet bowl is easily cleaned with biodegradable cleaner and a toilet brush. Because of its straight-through design, it actually needs less cleaning than a regular toilet bowl. The seat and the outside of the toilet can simply be wiped with some bio-degradable cleaners applied to a damp cloth.

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Q12: Is it energy efficient? 

A: Yes - The small fan positioned in the vent pipe is the only component requiring power and uses only a few dollars worth per year. Alternatively, we have optional solar power systems that require no mains power connection at all.

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Q13: Will you save money?

A: Yes, yes, YES! The Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet uses absolutely no water, as against a conventional flush system which can consume up to 30% of our household's total water usage. With more and more councils imposing charges on water consumption, this saving converts to dollars!

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Q14: Is it easy to access? 

A: Yes! The Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet provides easy access via the inspection door. Ensuring maintenance and servicing can be done by the home owner.

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Q15: How does the ventilation system work?

A: The Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet is designed so that the ventilation system draws air in through the compost tank and also down the toilet chute whenever the seat is lifted. This keeps odours out of the toilet room and makes the use of a separate room exhaust fan unnecessary. A small, heavy duty electric fan is installed in the vent pipe in a special housing that gives easy access for cleaning or replacement. On request a wind driven turbo-ventilator can be supplied instead of the standard rain cover. This provides back-up to the vent fan especially when choosing the Daytime Solar option. The PVC vent piping can be provided by your installer to suit your particular installation, or as an optional item from Clivus Multrum.

There are three fan options normally available:

  • Standard 12V (5 Watt) heavy duty fan
  • A 12V (2.5 Watt) fan for low-budget solar installations
  • A 240V fan for high use commercial installations

For the standard installation, a normal 240V power point is required in a weatherproof location near the fan housing. The 12V transformer may then be simply plugged in and connected to the fan without need for an electrician.

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Q16: What are the pedestal specifications?

A: Clivus Multrum supplies a premium quality toilet pedestal handmade from impact resistant high-gloss polymarble in white, ivory or grey. In appearance it is much the same as a regular toilet - without the cistern of course.

The seat and lid are high gloss plastic, with a premium quality wooden seat available on request. The toilet chute connects the pedestal to the tank, and is specially shaped to suit the pedestal base. The chute comes in 0.7 metre long sections, so the chute can be customised to fit the height of your floor exactly.

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Q17: How do we deal with household greywater?

A: There are many effective ways to deal with your greywater from the kitchen, bathroom and laundry. These vary depending on the local government regulations and the area you live in, so we recommend you check on requirements firstly with your local Council.

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Q18: How much airflow does the fan create?

A:  There is no simple answer to this question because the airflow is very dependent on your pipe configuration the vent system.

For a standard vent system for CM tank, it will deliver up to 160 m 3 of air per hour.

For a standard vent system for CM2, it will deliver 60 m 3 of air per hour.

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Q19: How environmentally friendly is the Clivus Multrum and the EcoLet?

A: Completely - the Clivus Multrum waterless composting toilet is 100% natural! The decomposition process is a totally natural one. Chemicals are not used as they would only harm the various composting organisms.

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Q20: Why supplied a 150 mm diameter vent system with CM 8 – 40 range ?

A:  A 150mm diameter pipe has 2.25 times more area than a 100mm pipe. This means more airflow.

The low voltage fans are IP55 rated meaning that they are designed to withstand high humidity.

The fan housing can be located at a convenient ‘inline’ location such that it can be inspected and cleaned if required. Unlike top of vent stack mounted fans which require maintenance staff to climb on top of the roof or even hire an EWP for maintenance/ replacement. They are also not subjected to damage by extreme weather events.

The fans are 120 mm diameter 4.5 watts and either 12v or 24v.

They are supplied with a 240 v / 12 v transformer . Alternatively, the fan can be connected to a solar system with backup battery. Ask our staff for information on our solar systems.

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Q21: What's the standard vent fan for CM2?

 The vent fan is mounted in a 50 – 100 mm reducer. The vent stack is 100 mm DWV pipe.

The fan housing can be located at a convenient location such that it can be inspected and cleaned if required. Unlike top of vent stack mounted fans which require the owner to climb on top of the roof or even hire an EWP for maintenance/ replacement. The in-line fan is also not subjected to damage by extreme weather events.

The fans are 90 mm round with 12 volts standard or optional 24 volts.

Standard is 2 watts minimum but can be upgraded to 4.5 watts.

They are supplied with a 240 v / 12 v transforme r. Alternatively, the fan can be connected to a solar system with backup battery. Ask our staff for information on our solar systems.