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Old 10-30-2018, 08:39 AM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Full-Time Travel
Posts: 11
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Glaval
Chassis: Ford E-450
Engine: 7.3L V8 DIESEL OHV Turbocharged
SunMar Mobile Composting Toilet

Knowing that skoolie builders often consider installing compost toilets, I want to share our experience with a Sun-Mar compost toilet. My wife and I used a Sun-Mar Mobile (12 volt) toilet for just over two years. We are full-time RVers towing a 23 foot travel trailer with a converted Glaval shuttle bus.

After a great deal of research, we selected the Sun-Mar Mobile toilet for the bus. Our selection was based primarily on the Sun-Mar composting technology. Even though the Sun-Mar toilet is the most expensive compost toilet we considered, we felt the technology and ease-of-use claims made by Sun-Mar warranted the cost.

Today, we are removing the Sun-Mar and installing a traditional toilet with a black water tank.

After two years of use, we have decided that a compost toilet or at least, a Sun-Mar compost toilet is not suited for full-time mobile use. In our experience, the Sun-Mar toilet never satisfactorily composted human waste.

We installed the toilet in strict compliance with Sun-Mar instructions. We carefully followed Sun-Mar operational directions. Only one person used the toilet as Sun-Mar suggests. Yet, we never achieved the composting results Sun-Mar promised in their marketing materials.

It is our opinion that the Sun-Mar composting process does not stand up to the movement and environmental challenges a skoolie (or any RV) presents.

On top of the operational problems we experienced, our encounters with Sun-Mar customer service were disappointing. Every time we contacted Sun-Mar about a problem, it was a painful process to get help. Eventually, Sun-Mar would provide replacement parts; however, there was a lot of finger pointing along the way.

In summary, our advice is to think long and hard before selecting a compost toilet over a traditional toilet and black water tank. If you do choose to install a compost toilet, please keep our experience in mind as you select a manufacturer.
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Old 10-30-2018, 08:58 AM   #2
Bus Crazy
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Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Spring Valley AZ
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Year: 2000
Coachwork: Bluebird
Engine: 5.9 Cummins
Rated Cap: 2 elderly children, 1 cat
Thank you for your real world evaluation.
Don, Mary and Spooky the cat.
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Old 10-30-2018, 09:07 AM   #3
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Location: Eustis FLORIDA
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Nice long term review.
Thing is- its just a litterbox. It takes a long time to actually compost the waste.
One can spend $10 or $1000 and its still just a litterbox.
Roll Your Own Build Thread
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Old 10-30-2018, 09:10 AM   #4
Bus Geek
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Columbus Ohio
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Year: 1991
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Chassis: International 3800
Engine: DTA360 / MT643
Rated Cap: 7 Row Handicap
from what i can see it seems whether people are happy with a "compost" toilet or not seems to be about expectations from a toilet.. and amount of work someone wants to put into it.. every RV / bus conversion forum has many many threads about toilets and of course toilet odor and toilet maintenance..

ultimately some people are considering their rig "camping" or "roughing it" so a little extra work or toilet smell to them is perfectly acceptable..

while another person may be wanting to emulate their spotless shiny new brick and mortar home toilet experience.. (flush and forget).

in my opinion some of the best advice for choosing a toilet is to attend skoolie and RV meetups.. many times people invite you into their home.. you can see and smell for yourself how their toilet is and gain ideas..

toilets are def not one-type-fits-all .. the amount of people using it also has a lot to do with it.. for any type..

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black water, compost, sun-mar, sunmar, toilet

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