The 15 Best Emergency Toilets You Should Consider

Modern amenities have made the majority of the population aware that backups of every essential system is necessary considering how unreliable many infrastructures are.

portable toilet

If you live within city limits then you’re more than likely at the mercy of water treatment plants and the dreaded tap water.

Any kind of issue with the water mains usually means that there will be a shut-off involved.

Since these problems can take quite a long time to fix, the length of time you would be without can be extensive.

Unfortunately, toilets rely on those pipes in order for them to work. When the water runs dry the toilets will stop working.

In light of this significant problem, people are investing in emergency toilets.

This article is going to show you the best of the best emergency toilets and explore a little bit about what the proper one to choose is, and some advice to get you a little further on your toilet purchasing adventure.

Why Would You Want An Emergency Toilet?

You may be thinking that there is only one major reason to have an emergency toilet, because everyone needs to poop.

While you wouldn’t be wrong in your assessment there are a few reasons beyond the need to use the washroom that will make you see the benefit of having one.

They don’t require a hookup for water – Some emergency toilets do require water to help clean the bowl and flush it out, but there is a reservoir that you can fill with from any water source.

Others use sawdust or other ingredients to help break down the matter.

You can take them anywhere – Emergency toilets are small and portable which means they can fit into all sorts of vehicles if you need to leave.

They are excellent to pack onto sleds or ATVs to take into the backcountry as temporary toilets.

Keeps smells to a minimum – Most emergency toilets are self-contained which is great for keeping scents from escaping.

This is important if you are using an emergency toilet in a house occupied by multiple people.

Durable and reusable – Usually made of non-porous plastic, emergency toilets can take a little abuse from the weather or transportation.

You will occasionally have to drain the contents and the materials used make it easy to wash out.

Those reasons above should convince you to go out and get one. The nice thing is that an emergency toilet can be a simple product or complex if you plan on using it more often.

There are some DIY methods for making your own emergency toilet but they lack the innovation that the companies below put into their products.

The Different Types Of Emergency Toilets

Not all emergency toilets are built alike and the different types have an impact on the situation they are going to be used in.

For now we are going to focus on the three main types: camping toilets, twin bucket toilets, and composting toilets.

Camping Toilets

This kind of toilet is really only best used in camping situations where you’re only using them for a couple of days.

One common issue is that they are very small and fill up quickly. At the basic idea a camping toilet is just a holder for a plastic bag or some other vessel for holding your excrement.

Another thing to consider is that bags break or come with tears in them.

Are you prepared to deal with getting rid of the waste? How do you clean it if it gets messy?

These are all questions you should ask if you want to invest in this kind of toilet for emergencies.

Twin Bucket Toilets

The name describes this kind of emergency toilet perfectly. One bucket holds the urine and the other holds the poop.

Since urine has much more volume than poop it makes sense to keep them separately since you can dispose of the pee much easier than the other.

Urine has nitrogen in it which will also be good for your compost.

Composting Toilets

The last option is the most expensive but has the greatest functionality for long-term usage.

Composting toilets are pretty popular amongst off-grid homesteaders because they have low maintenance requirements and give off virtually no smell.

Not only that but you can get some pretty good compost out of one of these toilets.

Don’t forget to vent the toilet or you’re going to have some issues with off-gassing.

The Downsides Of Using An Emergency Toilet

It’s not all sunshine and rainbows when it comes to emergency toilets. They are called an emergency for a reason, and sometimes those reasons aren’t very pretty.

Here are some of the downsides to using an emergency toilet that you’ll want to consider.

  • You will need to dispose of the waste eventually and that can get messy. Plus, you can’t just dump it into the garbage as that can potentially pose a health risk.

Planning is needed to deal with the waste and sometimes that can be a problem.

  • Emergency toilets are not ideal for sharing situations. Since they are storing the waste within the toilet there are going to be smells coming out of the open hole.

This isn’t ideal if the toilet needs to be inside of some living quarters.

  • Cleaning an emergency toilet can be a pain in the neck itself. Since you are dealing with human waste it can really be off-putting to some people.

Finding a healthy compromise is about all you can do when purchasing one for you.

Factors To Consider When Buying An Emergency Toilet

If you’ve read down this far then you’re ready to learn about what to look for when purchasing or building your own emergency toilet.

While the features may be limited, there are some innovations to consider that can be advantageous in different situations.

Tank Capacity

This is the deciding factor on whether the toilet you’re using is good for the short or long-term.

A larger tank means that you can go longer without dumping it, at the expense of having more to dump when the time is needed. Make sure the tank has a handle for easy carrying.

Materials Used In Construction

Some companies use heavy-duty plastics to ensure that there is no chance for leakage.

Others use a fabric material for portability and expect you to line the toilet with a bag. A lot of DIY options require specific materials to be constructed properly.

Quality Of Life Features

Some toilets have conveniences like handles to help you lug your waste to the appropriate disposal site.

But another good feature to have is a push pump on your toilet. A lot of toilets that use water come with a pump that you use to push the water into the bowl to help flush and clean it up.

The last feature you should look for is if the seat is comfortable. If you’re not able to sit on it without things being awkward then it might not be the right toilet for you.

Disclosure: This post has links to 3rd party websites, so I may get a commission if you buy through those links. Survival Sullivan is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. See my full disclosure for more.

The 15 Best Emergency Toilets You Should Consider

You’d be surprised at how many emergency toilets you can find after a quick Google search. Here is a roundup of the best emergency toilets you should consider for your next purchase.

1. Reliance Products Hunter’s Loo

Lightweight and portableBucket can tip
5 Gallon capacityIt is a simple bucket system
Snap-on hinged seat is durable

If you’re looking for a comfy bucket that you can easily clean out and take with you then this is the product for you.

It has a camouflage pattern so that you can hide better while you’re doing the deed. However, in the end it is just a bucket with a lid.

Get it right here.

2. Stansport Easy-Go Portable Camp Toilet

Small packageSmaller opening
High-quality thick materialSmall 2-gallon capacity
Looks like a garbage bin for stealthRounded design on the bottom is troublesome

While this unit makes for a great portable experience, you’ll find that you will be emptying it multiple times a day if you’re a frequent visitor.

That being said it is a great option for emergency uses and can easily be cleaned if you have access to a hose.

If you want something that can handle a tumble this is the toilet you want to look at.

Disclosure: This post has links to 3rd party websites, so I may get a commission if you buy through those links. Survival Sullivan is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. See my full disclosure for more.

Get it here.

3. Restop Commode Bucket Toilet

Very cushy seatThe seat could be secured better
Incredible smell holding sealsProne to tipping
Easy to take apart for cleaning

This emergency toilet comes with its own bags which make for easy removal of waste.

This is an ideal setup for when you are going somewhere that has no running water.

Unfortunately, you do have to have good balance while using it since the lid doesn’t sit snugly on the bucket.

Get it here.

4. Camco Portable Toilet Bucket

Durable material withstands sun damageComplaints about the lid being too snug are prevalent in this model
Tight seal on the lidProprietary bags are sold separately
Simple and lightweight

Camco makes some excellent products and while this one is decent there is an issue with the hole in the seat.

Currently, it seems to pose a challenge for males as the hole is difficult to use. However, the seal is excellent and leaking is virtually nonexistent with this toilet.

Get it right here.

5. PLAYBERG Portable Travel Toilet for Camping

Wide base makes for a stable toiletNo bags included
Removable partsThe lid must be removed to use the toilet
250lb weight limit

This toilet is a luxury emergency toilet. The seat is nice and comfy, it comes with a zippered bag, and there is even a toilet paper holder included in the unit.

It’s a bigger unit so make sure you have the space to house it, otherwise look at some of the smaller choices in this list.

Get it here.

6. Cleanwaste Go Anywhere Portable Folding Toilet

Incredible folding featuresWeighs more than other toilets
500lb weight limitNeeds special bags to work
Heavy duty construction Can be finicky to put together

This toilet is an incredible innovation with the folding system. It looks much like a briefcase-style folding bbq that you can manipulate into a toilet.

The legs are sturdy enough to accommodate a person up to 500lbs. If you’re looking for a lightweight option there are much smaller products out there.

Get it here.

7. Green Elephant Portable Toilet Seat

Basically a foldable toilet seatCan be too short
Great sized openingSo sturdy you need some elbow grease to fold it back up
Metal construction

Can’t get much simpler than a foldable toilet seat that you can attach a standard-sized plastic bag to.

The nice thing about this product is that it has a regular-sized toilet seat attached to it which makes it ideal for both men and women.

Get it here.

8. Hovermaster Hands-Free Portable Camping Toilet

Probably the lightest productYou’ll need to dig a hole
Very supportive while you squatCan be awkward positioning
Sturdy construction 

Aptly named, the Hovermaster really gets an exercise class in while you’re trying to use the washroom. It basically supports you while you squat and that’s all there is to it.

If you need something that fits into a backpack this might be a good choice for you.

Get it right here.

9. Coleman Portable Toilet

Different sized modelsProne to leaking clean water from the pump
Easy cleaningA heavy unit
Comfy constructionSome people find it quite short

This is effectively a porta potty that you can take with you. It has a push pump to help flush water through the system and the seat is arguably comfortable.

The water pump is great for keeping the toilet clean after each use. JUst be sure to inspect the toilet often to make sure there is no leaking happening.

Get it here.

10. Nature’s Head Composting Toilet

Small designNeeds electricity to power the fan (great if you have a generator or solar)
Two-chambered system for urine and solidsCan be smelly
90 uses before emptying

This is a little different than a regular emergency toilet in that it can run independently off the grid but does need an area for venting that does have electricity.

Think of it as an off-grid option if you are prepared and have all of your bases covered for amenities.

Get it here.

11. Separett 9215 Composting Toilet

Closely resembles a real toiletNeeds electricity to rotate chamber, cannot do it manually
Rotates the compost chamber on its ownQuite expensive

If you are the type of person who needs an actual toilet to feel comfortable then this offering from Separett will be right up your alley.

It even takes out some of the legwork in using it by automatically rotating the chamber inside for you. This reduces smell and is convenient.

Get it here.

12. Reliance Products Fold-to-Go Portable Toilet

Sturdy legsVery low to the ground
Waste bag is compostable
Locking mechanism on the legs is quite secure

Expect to get quite a few years out of this toilet as it is as sturdy as they come.

While the seat is comfortable expect it to be almost 5 inches lower than a standard toilet which might make your knees come up higher than expected.

Get it here.

13. SOS Survival Products Folding Portable Toilet

CollapsibleRequires specific poop bags
Sturdy locking system
300lb weight capacity

If you’re the type of person who is worried that the toilet legs will collapse as you’re using it then you want this survival toilet.

The locking mechanism is incredibly strong and you can be easily supported in your time of need.

Unfortunately they do use a proprietary bag that you will have to purchase separately.

Get it right here.

14. Wag Bags

Very portableYou have to hold the bag
Gelling agent solidifies waste
Easily disposed of

The ultimate emergency toilet that you can carry in your pocket. These bags have a gelling agent that destroys the smell and solidifies the waste.

You will have to dispose of it yourself in the garbage and holding them can be awkward for some people.

Get it here.

15. Thetford 365 Porta Potti

Sealed valves limit odorBig and bulky
Rotating pour-out spout makes for easy emptying

This is an emergency option that is quite frequently used by Rv’ers and boondockers.

It has all the ergonomical functions you could want and easy cleaning options are ideal, especially since there are different models with varying capacities.

If you’re looking for a vehicle toilet to take camping with you this would be a good option.

Get it here.

Final Thoughts

If you’ve made it this far then you are a little bit smarter about emergency toilets than you may want to let people know about. In the end you will be prepared if anything were to happen to the water or electricity supply.

Remember to think about where you will be using the toilet and purchase (or build) one that’s appropriate for you. You don’t want to be stuck with a heavy toilet that you need to figure out how to move.

Frequently Asked Questions

If this is your first emergency toilet that you’re purchasing then the following common questions could be some on your mind.

How do you dispose of the waste after you’re done?

If you are getting rid of waste in a plastic bag then you should find a site dedicated to disposing of organic human waste.

Most toilets that have a cassette or some flushing mechanism can have the waste disposed of where you could dump solids from an RV.

What is the best kind of emergency toilet?

It really depends on your situation. Some toilets are much better for portability and stealth whereas others can be used as established washrooms.

Assess your situation and think about what toilets would work best in each scenario.

Are you allowed to use emergency toilets anywhere?

If you gotta go, then you gotta go. While some places may frown upon use of an emergency toilet it’s a better alternative to not being able to use the washroom.

In most cases the toilets are stealthy and you will be out of plain sight so nobody should notice it.

Do I need to use the bags that you can purchase from a company?

While it is highly recommended to get the appropriate equipment to avoid any dirty mishaps you can sometimes get away with using a standard grocery plastic bag to get rid of the waste.

emergency toilets pinterest

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *