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Kildwick Composting Toilets: All You Need To Know In One Unbiased Review

Kelly Headshot

By Kelly Beasley

Last Updated: March 14, 2023

If you've been considering getting a composting toilet, the Kildwick composting toilet is one of many brands and types available for your RV or van.

The options are extreme. You can drop over $1000 on a ready-made all-the-frills composting toilet down to spending just $10 on a bucket and pee bottle for your toilet needs.

Reliance Luggable Loo bucket toilet

Behold, the fancy bucket toilet!

Natures Head composting toilet

Fancy expensive composting toilet

I've discovered the best RV toilet system for my situation, and it could be just as helpful for you. I'm thrilled to share it with you because I love sharing things I'm excited about!

The brand has yet to be well-known in the USA yet. It is a German company, and its name is Kildwick.

Kildwick composting toilet parts

Full Disclosure: Kildwick sent us toilet components to install in Kelly's van for testing and evaluation. As with all products we agree to test, we are under no obligation to write a glowing review for a product just because it was given to us. If we like a product and think it's a good fit for our audience, we will discuss it on Camp Addict. If we don't like the product, you will never hear about it from us.

What Is A Composting Toilet?

Surely you know what a flush toilet is, but you may be unfamiliar with composting toilets.

RV toilet with lid open

Your standard RV flush toilet

It is defined as: 

'A composting toilet is a dry toilet that separates the solids and liquids.' 

Keeping the solids separate from the liquids means no toxic sewage.

These toilets have two separate compartments for catching the two types of human waste.

The result is that you don't create toxic sewage.

There are two separate containers. One to catch liquid and one to catch solids.

For the solids, use a medium to cover or mix in the solids, such as:

  • Peat moss
  • Coconut Coir
  • Wood shavings
  • Cat litter

These promote composting and help prevent odors.

Some composting toilets keep the human waste and medium inside the composting bin long enough to start the composting process.

Those types need ventilation and some way to turn or mix the human waste in with the medium.

Others, like this Kildwick, get dumped more frequently, so there's no time for the solids to compost. So no 'tilling' of the medium is necessary.

Why does anyone care to use composting versus a conventional toilet? Because when sewage is made (which is toxic) with a conventional toilet, you are limited to disposing of it in just two places:

  • Regular toilet (typically for RV cassette toilets) 
  • Dump station

Meanwhile, composting toilet solids are 'cleaner' and may be composted in the garden or disposed of in a trash can, much like diapers.

So the bonus is that trash cans are much easier to find, are free, and easier to find than dump stations.

Liquids may also be deposited in any toilet, dump station, or even on the ground, as long as you dispose of it legally for the area.

The takeaway here is that dumping a composting toilet is an easier thing than dumping a black tank from a traditional RV toilet system.

Enter The Kildwick Composting Toilet System

Funny enough, I was already planning to upgrade my Winnebago toilet with a Kildwick system after learning about the product from another Winnebago Pocket owner.

But before I ordered, Kildwick contacted us wanting to post an article on Camp Addict.

We offered to review their composting toilet instead (kismet!).

Kildwick compositing toilet shipping box

Composting toilet parts arrived and ready for install

They agreed and sent the bowl and compartments, packed nicely in a sturdy box, and Marshall and I got started on the installation in my van.

Toilet Types Offered

Kildwick offers three composting toilet types:

  • Fully assembled composting toilets
  • DIY kit composting toilets
  • Composting toilet parts for you to build into your RV or home

The fully assembled, and DIY kits both have wooden walls. They are unfinished, so you can finish them with the same color or stain as your build, RV, or home.

Below is the fully assembled toilet for your RV or home.

Kildwick complete composting toilet

Fully assembled toilet

They offer fully contained wooden toilets with the option of a 12-volt fan for venting out odors.

If you prefer a more hands-on approach, they also offer a DIY kit to put the box together yourself.

Kildwick complete composting toilet kit contents

DIY Kildwick kit

Lastly, they offer the urine diverter bowl and parts separately so you can build the toilet into your travel trailer, motorhome, or van.

This was the option I chose as I built it into the dinette under my dinette cushion.

Kildwick shit happens toilet paper

Came with the toilet. They're not wrong, haha. 

The composting toilet parts I got are refreshingly basic.

There's no water or plumbing required, and you don't need to use electricity and a fan to vent it.

Parts

The company also offers just the basic parts for you to put together yourself, as I did.

I got the Classic White urine separator bowl.

I also got their urine container and a small solids tank. They are both rectangular buckets with different lids for catching waste.

They also have a Spillguard Kit, which I didn't realized existed until I started writing this review.

I will add it to my setup for keeping the urine odor at bay between emptying.

Kildwick spillguard kit

Spillguard Kit Parts

How The Kildwick Composting Toilet Works

This system works like most pre-manufactured composting toilets in that it separates the solids and liquids.

The differences between the Kildwick and, say, a Nature's Head are these. Kildwick is:

  • Way cheaper
  • No ventilation needed
  • No agitator
  • It needs less space if you put it together yourself

These are four HUGE benefits over the highly marketed pre-manufactured composting toilets.

Managing The Solids

Line the solids container with two sturdy bags and use coconut coir to cover the contents once deposited.

If you can't find coco coir, use cat litter, peat moss, or dirt.

Once it fills up enough, tie up the bag and dispose of it in a trash bin. I usually can go about a week before wanting to change it out.

You will likely have to dump the contents of a Kildwick more often than you'd be required to change out the contents in a Nature's head or Air Head, likely once every week or two weeks. It all depends on how many people use it and how often.

No ventilation is needed in the Kildwick to draw out odors; you can just put the top on the bucket if there's an odor to contain it.

Lately I haven't been covering my solids box and there's no smell.

Managing The Liquids

The Kildwick pee container is almost exactly like the solids container but with a different opening and handle.

How often you urinate and how much you drink depends on how often you dump the liquids.

There's not much here to talk about. It's a container that catches your pee.

When it gets full or stinky, empty it. I can go 5-7 days before needing to dump! They recommend to dump every two days for odor control. But lately I haven't been having any issues at all with odor. 

Kildwick sells a 'spill guard kit' that helps keep urine from spilling during travel and contains odors.

Assembling The Kildwick Toilet

It was easy to install this into my van. I'm no DIY'er, and I did have help. But still, it was a simple process needing only a few tools.

All you need is an area to place the bowl, a platform for the bowl, a lid, and room underneath for the tanks.

Make sure to keep the tanks from moving around during transit.

I placed mine underneath my dinette/lounge area where the Porta-Potti was stored.

Kelly pointing to Kildwich toilet installed under seat

My future secret toilet spot!

Hardware Store Parts

We went to a hardware store and bought parts. First, wood (1x4's) to contain the tanks.

We also bought a thin sheet of wood to make a 'lid' to cover the bowl, screws, a piano hinge, some washers, and regular small hinges for the bowl lid.

Kildwick toilet installation hardware

We used screws to connect the 1x4 pieces.

A little Velcro keeps the bowl in place on the fuzzy board, and a nylon tab on the front of the bowl platform lets me easily lift the platform to access the containers underneath.

Kildwick toilet component box

The box installed to house the tanks

Construction

We started by putting the tanks where they would 'live' and measured how long each board should be.

We cut the boards to length using a circular saw, positioned them, and screwed the boards together. They fit perfectly!

'L' brackets were used to secure the wood frame to the van.

Kildwick composting toilet installed

These Kildwick composting toilet tanks are going nowhere!

Next, we cut the existing platform the bowl was to go in so we could make it hinge.

Marshall cutting Kildwick lid

The hinge makes it easier to lift 3/4 of the board to get to the tanks underneath.

Then we used the Kildwick-supplied pattern to cut the bowl hole the right size and shape on the bowl board.

Don't forget to position the tank and the urine hole so they line up perfectly once installed.

Kildwick toilet template
Kelly cutting hole for Kildwick toilet

After cutting the 'bowl' board, we re-connected the pieces with the piano hinge.

Kildwick cover hinge installation

The hardest part was mounting the 'lid' on top of that board so there was room to lower the lid without interference from the hinge screws or hinges themselves.

We ended up making and adding small wooden spacers under the hinges to lift the lid to the height of the top of the bowl.

Kildwick toilet lid hinge spacers

Wooden spacers for the hinges

The last steps were connecting the bowl to the bowl board using Velcro and lastly, adding the nylon strap to the front for easy lift-up and wallah!

It was DONE! So simple!

Kildwick composting toilet lid up

Kildwick composting toilet setup ready for its first deposit, LOL.

Kelly Kildwick compost toilet install exposed

Toilet system above and below view

10 Composting Toilet Advantages Over Flush Toilets

There are many advantages for the RVer to have a composting toilet VS a traditional flush toilet. Here they are:

  1. Water saver when boondocking
  2. Essentially nothing that can break
  3. No need for a dump station for the black tank
  4. NO BLACK TANK NEEDED!
  5. Never have a sewage spill (but don't accidentally drop your urine container!)
  6. More flexible options for disposing the waste
  7. No chance of water leak/floor damage
  8. Never have black tank odors
  9. Tank chemicals are not necessary
  10. No need for a bathroom=space saver
  11. (Bonus) Never have a black tank clog!

My Personal Experience With The Kildwick

I can tell you that my new toilet, hands down, is my SECOND FAVORITE thing in my van!

The only thing that beats it is my custom Tochta mattress. But, if we're talking non-essentials,  my fairy lights, and my rainbow stained-glass window film beat the toilet, too, LOL!

Regardless, I FREAKING LOVE my Kildwick Composting Toilet!

Happy Kelly with her Kildwick toilet

Just me and my favorite bowl, haha!

Here are the reasons I love it so much:

  1. Simplicity- no dumping, easy to empty both 'tanks,' comfortable, and I never worry about tank filling or having a leak.
  2. No dumping- Hallelujah!!!!! I don't ever need a dump station again! I only put water, no soap, down my grey, so I can dump grey just about anywhere. It's very freeing.
  3. Way Less Gross- Not having to deal with sewage and a dirty sewer hose is delightful.  I use Coco Coir to cover #2 and dump #1 when it gets full or smelly.
  4. Space Saver- I built my Kildwick under my dinette seat. ZERO need for having a bathroom space that only gets used a few times a day. My van is very open.
  5. SIMPLICITY!- Did I say simplicity??? I dump the #2 in any trash receptacle (think diapers). I dump the #1 on any dirt or toilet I find. It's one less thing to find, plan for, and pay for (dump stations).
  6. No Ventilation Required- With certain composting systems, you need a fan and vent pipe going outside your RV. Not with the Kildwick! No electricity (or plumbing) is needed. (But you can opt to have ventilation depending on which system you get.)

In my old travel trailer, I could've gotten a Kildwick (but I didn't know about them then) or some other composting toilet. I very seriously considered getting the Nature's or Air brand.

But I heard the pee container in those needed dumping about every other day. That sounded like MORE work, too often for the chore than I wanted to deal with.

As a solo traveler, I can go about 5+ days with this system before dumping, usually only necessary due to the stink.

But Kildwick has a splash guard you can order. It stops any overspilling during transit and plugs the urine inlet.

Closing it off also slows the oxygen supply, which is what makes the urine start to turn to ammonia, and that's what causes the smell. Finally, it plugs the pee hole, so no odors escape.

So if I get that part, I predict I can go seven days between emptying.

Disadvantages/Cons of The Kildwick Toilet

So nothing's perfect, right? I did run across two things I don't personally have a solution for yet:

  •  Potential urine smell (There IS a solution, I just haven't gotten it yet)
  • Gunk buildup in the urine container (I now have a solution)

At first, the longer I used it, the more the pee container started to hold the smell of urine.

Meaning even when I'd empty it, it still stunk (might have to do with the scum build-up on the walls).

Kildwick compost toilet urine bottle

Ok, that's pretty ick! I didn't realize I'd have to scrub out the inside of the pee container.

I don't see anything on Kildwick's site for neutralizing odors besides the spill guard kit, which might be the solution.

Still need to clean the tank, though. There is a page on cleaning that offers some tips.

I reached out to Kildwick, and they said they hadn't seen this scum buildup. So, errr, I guess it's just me? They suggested using baking soda or vinegar for the odor. I have yet to try it.

I bought a kitchen dish scrubber with a handle, and it took the buildup right off. So that's something I may have to do once a month or so.

So far, since removing the buildup, there's been no odor. Yesterday I emptied the pee container after it was almost full, I'd used it for a week. No odor. And no buildup. 

Kildwick spillguard kit

Spillguard Kit parts

Kildwick spillguard kit installed

Kit shown installed with cutout side view of bowl

Conclusion

If you have an RV of any kind and want to simplify your toilet needs OR don't have room or plumbing for a flush toilet, a composting toilet is perfect.

The Kildwick composting toilet is a versatile one that offers either a whole contained toilet system, or the parts for you to build into your RV as I did.

It's cost-effective, simple, comfortable, and space-saving. I cannot more highly recommend this toilet!

5 multi-color toilet paper rolls

There are many brands of composting toilets, and this is the only one I have tried in any of my RVs.

But for me, there's no comparison between this brand and the 'popular' brands you mostly hear about that are very expensive, much bigger, require ventilation, and a turnstile for mixing the #2, AND you must clean the composting part out periodically.

I prefer much more affordable, easy, and simple, the Kildwick.

You can go as cheap and easy as using a bucket, but with that system, you don't have a #1 solution (most people only poo in a bucket).

The Kildwick toilet offers a solution for both solid and liquid waste and it weirdly makes me smile whenever I use it.

I am grateful to Kildwick for creating this toilet and allowing me to try it out and review it. I am absolutely in love with it!

Kelly Headshot

As a seasoned and passionate RVing expert, I have dedicated myself to living the full-time RV life for over 5.5 years, immersing myself in the unique quirks and joys of the boondocking lifestyle and gaining a wealth of knowledge and experience along the way. In December 2020, my business partner and I made the transition to part-time RVing, but in January 2023, we hit the road once again, this time in our trusty vans. My mission is to help others embrace the RVing lifestyle with confidence and excitement, armed with the knowledge and resources needed to make the most of their adventures. I believe that the more you know, the more you can truly appreciate and enjoy the freedom and flexibility of the open road. Join me on this journey and let's make some unforgettable memories.

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