Should I Have A Flush Toilet Or A Dry Toilet? The Choice That Changes Everything

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Flush Toilets VS Dry Toilets: An Introduction

Pretty much every home has a flush toilet, pretty much every office as a flush toilet, and pretty much every public restroom has a flush toilet.

But what if they didn’t have to?

Now, we’re not suggesting you forego the toilet altogether, that’d be a very messy ordeal.

No, we are simply drawing attention to the existence of dry toilets which could potentially offer a viable alternative to the humble flush toilet.

Are dry toilets good? How do they work? Are dry toilets more hygienic?

Let’s answer all these questions and more as we compare flush toilets and dry toilets to see which you should install.

Let’s get started.


Flush Toilets Explained

Flush Toilet

First of all, let’s explain what a flush toilet is.

A flush toilet is the standard type of toilet used throughout the UK.

It consists of a pan and a cistern.

The user sits on the pan when they relieve themselves and then hit a button to make the water stored within the cistern flow down through the pan, washing all of the refuse from the pan and into the sewers.


Dry Toilets Explained

So, how does a dry toilet even work? If a flush toilet needs to use water to wash away refuse, what do dry toilets do differently?

Well, there are actually two distinct answers to the dry toilet question, let’s break them down.

Compost Toilets

Compost toilets feature a bin, or in some rudimentary cases a hole, underneath the pan that collects the refuse.

This bin is layered with sawdust which soaks up the liquid from the refuse and all of the smell.

The remaining dry refuse can then be removed and reused as fertilizer for growing plants and crops.

Incinerator Toilets

An incinerator toilet works in mostly the same way to a compost toilet, except instead of dropping the refuse into a bin, it drops the refuse into a specialized incinerator which then burns the refuse, reducing it to ash.

This ash can then be removed once enough has built up over time.


Benefits Of Flush Toilets

Toilet Flusher

Now that we understand what each toilet is, let’s see what each toilet offers and how they compare.

Flush Toilets Are Easy To Install

Compared to their contemporaries, flush toilets are remarkably easy to install.

This is because flush toilets utilize the sewers system which is present throughout the UK, whereas dry toilets use their own systems that need extra consideration to install.

The standardized nature of flush toilets means any plumber can easily install them; however, you would probably have to source a specialist to install a dry toilet.

Flush Toilets Are Hygienic

Thanks to the use of water in the system, flush toilets are super hygienic.

As well as this, because of the use of water traps, such as P Traps, flush toilets trap the odour and germs of the refuse in the sewer system where it belongs, meaning that as well as being hygienic, they also prevent foul odours!

Flush Toilets Don’t Take Up Much Space

Because flush toilets don’t need the extra space for the compost bin or incinerator, they are actually much more compact than their rival toilets.

Keep this in mind if you are low on space in your home and are looking to fit in as much as possible.

Flush Toilets Are Easy To Maintain

Once again, because of their standardized form and lack of extraneous elements, flush toilets are easy to maintain.

This is greatly beneficial for anyone looking for the simple life.

Flush Toilets Are Affordable

Finally, flush toilets are the standard bearer for quality and price, meaning there are flush toilets available for every level of budget.

Meanwhile, due to their specialist nature, dry toilets are typically much more expensive and less likely to have varying prices.

Check out our stock for affordable toilets.


Benefits Of Compost Toilets

Compost Toilet

Now, let’s turn our attention to the first of the dry toilets, the compost toilet.

Compost Toilets Don’t Use Water

The big draw of dry toilets is that they don’t use water. This can save you a lot of money on your water bill over the years and is the main boon of such a device.

Compost Toilets Help The Environment

Naturally, the compost you make in your compost toilet can be used to help grow plants and such. However, you will have to contact your council to check where it can be used before repurposing it anywhere, so keep that in mind.

Compost Toilets Are Helpful Where There Is No Plumbing

If you live out in the sticks where there is no plumbing, or if you need a toilet for a remote area, like a construction site, then the compost toilet could be perfect for you as it doesn’t need any connection to the established sewer system to function.

Compost Toilets Are Quiet

Because they lack any real mechanisms to make noise, compost toilets are relatively silent affairs.

This can be great for anyone looking for the peaceful life, or the ability to go to the loo at midnight and not wake anyone.


Benefits Of Incinerator Toilets

Incinerator Toilet

Finally, let’s focus on the compost toilet’s cousin, and fellow dry toilet, the incinerator toilet.

What are the benefits?

Incinerator Toilets Don’t Use Water

Much like the compost toilet, incinerator toilets do not use water. This is perfect for anyone trying to save money on their water bill, or that doesn’t live in an area with readily accessible water.

Incinerator Toilets Destroy Refuse

The main kick of an incinerator toilet is in fact, the incinerator. The inbuilt incinerator allows you to burn any refuse into a fine ash. This is great for helping dampen the spread of germs.


Drawbacks Of Flush Toilets

Flushing Toilet

Like how we need the Sun and the Moon, night and day, sweet and bitter; we need to understand the drawbacks of any product as well as their positive attributes.

So, let’s take a lot at the drawbacks of flush toilets.

Flush Toilets May Leak

The primary issue with flush toilets is that they might leak.

It is worth noting that they are not likely to leak.

However, as the others don’t actually utilize water, they can’t leak.

So, in comparison this is a negative aspect of flush toilets.

If you suspect your flush toilet is leaking, ensure the edges are all sealed with silicon caulk.

Flush Toilets Make A Flushing Noise

As well as the potential to leak, flush toilets make some noise. A flushing noise to be precise.

This may seem obvious, but it is worth considering as you won’t get any noise with the compost toilet.

It is also worth considering that you can mitigate the noise of flush toilets by installing a wall hung flush toilet. By being disconnected from the floor, the noise can’t travel as far.


Drawbacks Of Compost Toilets

Toilet Compost

Now, let us take a gander at the downsides of compost toilets.

Compost Toilets Have To Be Emptied Manually, By You

The primary downside of compost toilets is that they have to be emptied, and who else is going to do it other than you?

If you don’t want to handle excrement, this could definitely pose an issue.

However, if you are used to picking up after dogs, then the experience may not be too painful.

Compost Toilet Compost Cannot Be Used In A Lot Of Places

The unfortunate truth is that you can’t just use the compost you make, willy-nilly. You have to check with your council where soil amendment is allowed.

If there are no places in your area, then you’re stuck with an awful lot of homegrown compost.

Compost Toilets Take Up A Lot Of Space

Compost toilets take up a lot of space. This is because you need to install the bin below them. If you don’t have room for the, often quite large, bin below your toilet, then you don’t have enough room for your compost toilet.

Compost Toilets Are Expensive

Compost toilets typically cost around £1000. Seeing as regular flush toilets typically cost around £200, you can see how the price of compost toilets can be a problem for some.

Compost Toilets Are More Difficult To Maintain

To be frank, if you don’t properly maintain your compost toilet bin, then you could foster diseases, insects and even other forms of wildlife.

Naturally, this is not ideal.

That’s why we recommend sticking to the tried and true method of installing a flush toilet.


Drawbacks Of Incinerator Toilets

Incinerating Toilet

Incinerator Toilets Use Electricity

The modern incinerator toilet uses electricity to burn away the refuse within it.

As you’re probably aware, the less electricity you can put into your bathroom, the better.

This is because electricity and water make for a dangerous pair when they meet, and while the likelihood of there being an electrical mishap with your incinerator toilet is low, it is much higher than that of a flush toilet that doesn’t use any electricity.

Compost Toilets Are Expensive

Much like their compost toilet brethren, incinerator toilets are expensive. Once again, they typically cost around £1000. However, they also have the added issue of sapping your electricity bill. What you save in water costs will be lost in electric costs.

Compost Toilets Take Up A Lot Of Space

Incinerator toilets take up more space than the average toilet, just like compost bins. This is especially true when you consider they also have to account for the incinerating mechanism. The good news is, they are easier to clean out than compost toilets, as all that remains is ash.

Compost Toilets Are More Difficult To Maintain

Incinerator toilets are specialist devices, so when goes wrong, it is best to get a specialist involved. However this can be costly and time consuming.

These are the reasons we recommend opting for the traditional flush toilet.


Summary Tables


Flush Toilet Summary

Flush Toilet Pros

Flush Toilet Cons

Flush Toilets Are Easy To Install

Flush Toilets May Leak

Flush Toilets Are Hygienic

Flush Toilets Make A Flushing Noise

Flush Toilets Don’t Take Up Much Space


Flush Toilets Are Easy To Maintain


Flush Toilets Are Easy To Maintain




Compost Toilet Summary

Compost Toilet Pros

Compost Toilet Cons

Compost Toilets Don’t Use Water

Compost Toilets Have To Be Emptied Manually, By You

Compost Toilets Help The Environment

Compost Toilet Compost Cannot Be Used In A Lot Of Places

Compost Toilets Are Helpful Where There Is No Plumbing

Compost Toilets Take Up A Lot Of Space

Compost Toilets Are Quiet

Compost Toilets Are Expensive


Compost Toilets Are More Difficult To Maintain


Incinerator Toilet

Incinerator Toilet Pros

Incinerator Toilet Cons

Incinerator Toilets Don’t Use Water

Incinerator Toilets Use Electricity

Incinerator Toilets Destroy Refuse

Compost Toilets Are Expensive


Compost Toilets Take Up A Lot Of Space


Compost Toilets Are More Difficult To Maintain



Is A Flush Toilet Or Dry Toilet Better For The Home?

Considering everything, we recommend installing a flush toilet in your home. This is because they are easier to install and maintain, while also being standardized to the UK sewer system.


Is A Flush Toilet Or Dry Toilet Better For The Workplace?

Our recommendation depends on the workplace. If you are working inside, in a building connected to the sewer system, then you should install a flush toilet as it is the standardized UK toilet and will reap you an assortment of benefits.

However, if you are working outside constantly and want an easy to use, ecofriendly toilet, then we recommend a dry toilet, specifically the compost toilet.


Is A Flush Toilet Or Dry Toilet Better For The Public?

Due to the ease of use and maintenance, which are both of heightened importance when facing substantial foot traffic, we believe flush toilets are the best toilets to install in public facing facilities such as parks and gyms.


Flush Toilets VS Dry Toilets: The Conclusion

Comfort Height Toilet

Overall, there are quite a lot of differences between flush toilets and dry toilets, and understanding these differences is your key to having a happy bathroom.

Taking everything into consideration, we believe flush toilets to generally be the best bet for most situations.

To learn more about the different varieties of flush toilets, such as wall hung toilets, toilets within built sinks and more, check out our blog for our comprehensive articles on everything you need to know about toilets.