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campervan toilets
  1. Campervan
24th June 2022

A guide to campervan toilets

We breakdown the best toilet options for you to use in your campervan, from portables to composting systems.

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It might not be the most glamorous thing to think about before you set off on your journey, but making sure you have a fully functioning campervan toilet is imperative for your holiday, especially if you’re travelling long distances. 

And it seems it’s a big concern for a lot of campervan users – in our dive into van life, 1 in 4 survey respondents ranked dealing with waste as their biggest struggle while travelling or holidaying in a campervan, motorhome or converted van.

If this is your first time using a campervan, or even if you’re a veteran, surprisingly there are more options than you might think available to you. Here we breakdown the best toilets for campervans. 

What are the different types of campervan toilets?

Cassette toilet

If you have a UK manufactured campervan, chances are you will have a cassette toilet, as these are the most popular option. Perhaps that is down to their design resembling that of a household toilet you would find in any bathroom up and down the country. They are made out of porcelain or plastic and some even swivel to accommodate wet room arrangements to make the most of awkward bathroom shapes in van conversions. 

Cassette toilet systems are installed as permanent fixtures in your camper as they act as a small holding tank for your toilet waste until you are able to empty it. When it is time to empty the tank, it will be taken out through a service door on the outside of the van where you can then empty it at a waste disposal station.  

As cassette toilets use chemicals, it’s important that you empty them safely. Black waste disposal stations, or chemical disposal points (CDP), are usually found at campsites and motorhome service stations, or, alternatively, you can dispose of waste in your own sewage system at home or in a public toilet.

If you have bought your campervan second-hand, then you may wish to buy a ‘fresh-up kit’ to replace the toilet seat and cassette.  

Gravity flush toilet 


A gravity flush toilet system will look exactly like a cassette, apart from one noticeable difference: they are often operated using a foot pedal. The waste will drop into a large holding tank which is directly underneath the toilet bowl and emptied via a sewer hose. 

Depending on the model you buy, your gravity flush toilet may have a cistern for water to directly come from the onboard water tank, although these are more common in modern motorhomes than campervans.    

Portable toilets 

Another option is a portable toilet – we recommend using the Thetford Porta Potti. Whilst you may feel like you’re a toddler again, it is a quick and easy way to dispose of your waste as the waste tank is separated from the toilet bowl for emptying. Note that if you’re using chemicals in the Porta Potti, you’ll need to empty the toilet at a chemical disposal point.

It’s lightweight which makes it the ultimate portable toilet to use for holidays and long weekends if you are travelling in a small group.  

Composting toilets

If you don’t want the hassle of having to find a waste disposal site, then a composting toilet may be the way forward for you. Most models will divert any urine from the solid excrement waste into a separate tank or bottle, whilst the solids are diverted into a larger tank that is lined with natural materials such as chopped straw, sawdust and coconut fibre to relieve you of any unwanted smells.   

This will mean your composting toilet will in fact be odourless, no matter what you eat while on your journeys. They also use hardly any water and do not need to be plumbed into your campervan, however you will need to rotate the compost chamber pretty frequently. 

Getting rid of the waste is simple and easy. Urine can be tipped down a public toilet or in the wild away from civilisation, drains and water courses, whilst solids can be bagged up and placed in a compost bin. 

Choosing the right campervan insurance 

Shopping around for a good insurance deal might leave you flushing away your hard earned cash, so let us do the hard work for you. 

Sterling campervan insurance starts at just £165 a year and comes with free personal possessions cover (up to a value of £2,000) and free European cover for up to 90 days. 

You can even include home start and European breakdown cover or standalone camping equipment cover which protects camping-related furniture and furnishings, personal possessions, luggage and camping accessories.

Call 0344 381 9990 for a swift no obligation quote or book a callback at a time that suits you. 

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