Episode 109

What is the best toilet for a Campervan?


June 26th, 2021

8 mins 43 secs

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About this Episode

What is the best toilet for a camper van? A frequently asked question and one that really does need to be thought through carefully.

The best toilet for your campervan will depend on the size of your van:

The best toilet for a minivan campervan

  • Folding portable toilet

The best toilet for a low roof cargo van

  • Small portable cassette toilet

The best toilet for a high roof van such as a Mercedes Sprinter, Ford Transit or Promaster

  • Larger size cassette toilet
  • Composting toilet

You know, we've got a great article on camper van toilets over at and we talked about just how great it is to have a toilet on board.

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Some of the really obvious advantages are, if you have a toilet on board, you never have to worry about campground toilets or truck stop toilets, restaurant toilets, will they let me use the toilet, et cetera.

So, it's really great to have one on board. So the question of, should you have a campervan toilet on board I think is pretty cut and dried; you definitely should if you can.

I think the answer is yes, unless all you're doing is boondocking and you can always go outside for most people.

Just the issue of being able to relieve yourself in the middle of the night is huge. But there are a lot of other reasons to have a toilet in a campervan.

What is the best toilet for a camper van? It depends on your van and this is a very important thing. So you'll want to give some serious thought to this.

Now, if you've got a Toyota Delica mini campervan, you may not be able to use a toilet inside at all.

I'm running a mini camper right now and while I can relieve myself in the van, I prefer not to. So that's an issue. The smaller the van, the more difficult a toilet becomes. Probably the cheapest and simplest toilets are folding toilet bucket toilets.

And then what I call a full squat tray toilet. I actually prefer this method. A couple of years ago, Squaty-Potty’s for home toilets were all the rage. They made it possible to, instead of sit on on the toilet, you could more or less squat over the toilet and it really is a much healthier way to relieve yourself.

Now, not everybody is physically capable of doing a full depth squat. I hadn't really thought about it until I started lifting weights and got into squatting for, for exercise. And then. Yeah. Spending time in Asia, where people will sit in a full squat all day while they work. I've seen motor motorcycle mechanics that don't even have a stand they're actually squatting all day long and they can do it and it doesn't destroy their knees. That's a myth. It actually makes your knees more flexible and stronger.

But anyway, I digress, except to say that if all you have is a shallow tray, And maybe a plastic liner, then that can be a great campervan toilet solution. If you have the physical flexibility, you just use your tray and you wrap up whatever waste you've created and take that out to the garbage, which is what most municipalities want that just dumped in the garbage and that's it.

So then moving on… There are also bucket toilets and that's just a toilet seat that fits on a five gallon bucket. You'll want to use plastic bags. Now you can get into a variety of mediums for that. You could do a homemade composting situation with the right medium.

You could use kitty litter and cover it up there. You know, there's a lot of ways you can deal with that. I don't really want to get into that here. There's a lot of info online about that, but that's an option. The disadvantage of a bucket toilet is the seat is round. Most toilet seats are not round, they're oval.

And because the human anatomy isn't really made to sit down on this circular object, it just doesn't work very well. So that's something to keep in mind, but if it works for you, a bucket toilet can be a great solution.

Next would be folding toilets, which are great for minivan campers and some people with larger vans like them as well for their simplicity. They’re inexpensive and easy to come by and there are a variety of folding toilets available.

And again, if you go to our article at Vansage.com you will find our article on camper van toilets.

Folding toilets are cheap, easy to use, they fold away for easy storage, they use the plastic bag system that you use once, maybe twice. If you've got two people that are going to use it consecutively and then tie it off and throw it away. So folding toilets are a good campervan solution and very simple.

Cassette toilets are are the most popular camper van toilet for full sized conversion cargo vans and for many larger vans such as Sprinters, Transits and Promasters.

Many campervan owners love them because they contain the waste well and they don't require ducting. You don't need a hose or an exhaust fan. Some cassette toilet allow you to hook up an exhaust fan as well.

And if you have a dedicated kind of shower unit or shower/toilet combo unit in your van, then you can install a vent fan in the roof and all the smells are taken care of, especially if you have a door that closes tightly.

There are a variety of cassette toilets. They are relatively inexpensive. If you got one that you weren't crazy about, you could try another one and it wouldn't break the bank. So yeah, a lot of advantages to campervan cassette toilets.

The disadvantage of course, is that you need to empty them pretty frequently, every couple of days at the very least, maybe even daily.

And then finally are composting toilets and we've done another episode of The Campervan Podcast on Composting toilets titled Can you use a composting toilet in the camper van?

For many people, a composting toilet is the best way to go. And that comes down to environmental concerns. And there are also some convenience related issues with regard to composting toilets that some people really like.

Regarding what is the best toilet for a Campervan, I think the number one issue is the size of your van and how much room you have for a toilet.

How much room you have in your van with regard to what is the best toilet for a camper van? Probably the number one issue is how much space you have. And do you have a dedicated space where a toilet can be standing all the time or you can tuck it away somewhere, or do you need it to be folded and completely out of the way?

One more option is that you can get a free-standing toilet tent that would allow you to have privacy outside. People set them up with a camper van shower, but that can be a great solution for a toilet, too.

They unfold very easily and quickly, and they fold away and take up very small amount of space. You can put it up at your campsite. You can put your folding toilet in there and just leave it up until you're ready to leave. So that's another possibility.

Thank you for listening to The Campervan Podcast.