Have you ever heard about macerating toilets? Do you know what is the best macerating toilet?
You have probably researched this alternative if your bathroom is too far from the main drain line. Macerating toilets are also recommended in low areas such as basements. You can find them too in homes that are not connected to the sewer system. They are even installed on sailing boats!
This post will tell you how a macerating toilet works and why you should install one. In the end we provide a macerating toilet buyer’s guide, not without suggesting three picks. One product is in the luxury category, one is budget, and a third one offers the best value for money.
What is the best macerating toilet?
Macerating toilets are also called upflush toilets. A typical toilet sends waste onto the main drain line and to the sewer or septic tank by using gravity. A macerating toilet, on the other hand, is installed where a drain line is inexistent or above the level of the toilet.
This type of toilet sends waste to a macerating unit located behind the toilet or hidden in the wall. The waste is liquefied and sent through a pipe to the main drain line. A pump is needed to move the waste away from the toilet.
The system works, but should ideally not be used for your primary toilet. This type of toilet can fail more often due to including multiple mechanical parts.
How does a macerating toilet work?
A macerating toilet softens and breaks human waste and toilet paper. After going through a stainless-steel rotating blade, the waste is mixed with flushing water.
Next this mixture is pumped into a sanitary sewer as a fine slurry. The most powerful grinders accept the accidental flushing of waste such as wet wipes and feminine hygiene products. However, it is recommended to flush only human waste and toilet paper.
It is a very simple process, yet in involves multiple steps you may not be aware of:
- Flushing the toilet discharges waste into the macerator device. This is usually positioned behind the toilet;
- Water level rises and water pressure activates a microswitch that turns the macerator device on;
- The stainless-steel blade driven by a motor rotate at as much as 3,600 revolutions per minute. This grinds the effluent into small particles;
- The microswitch deactivates when the waste is completely ground;
- The reduced effluent is pumped away into a sanitary drain such as a septic tank or soil stack. The reduced effluent will not flow back due to a non-return valve;
- The toilet refills with water.
Cons of macerating toilets
Even though this type of toilet can be an excellent option, it does not come without some drawbacks:
- Depending on electricity
You will not be able to use the macerating toilet during power outages.
- Making noise
The noise of the pump is noticeable, even if manufacturers make efforts to design quiet devices.
- Prone to clogs
Accidentally flushing items that you are not supposed to flush can cause a clog. Providing access for servicing is vital.
- Pump needs to be kept primed
This means you need to flush the toilet at least once a day. Not using the toilet for a while comes with the necessity to deactivate the pump.
Best macerating toilet
1.Premium pick: Saniflo SaniPLUS
This macerating toilet from the well-known Saniflo brand enables you to create a bathroom anywhere without breaking the floor.
The elongated shape of the toilet provides comfort and elegance anywhere, even in the most remote areas. The system also includes a bathroom pump and a white toilet tank.
- Reliable packaging
The product is professionally foam packaged from warehouse to ensure safe delivery.
- Can install far from sewer line
You can have a complete bathroom up to 15 feet below the sewer line. The toilet can be installed up to 150 feet away from a soil stack.
- Can connect other fixtures to it
The macerating system of Saniflo Sani PLUS accepts any upflush toilet, sink, or shower.
- Easy to install
This product has an efficient design and you will need to handle just four connections.
- No need for motor maintenance
The motor is sealed for life in an oil-filled enclosure. The moving parts are kept at a minimum, reducing the risk of malfunctions.
- Full 2-year warranty
In case of malfunction, customers benefit from repair or replacement.
- Can leave an unpleasant odor
Like all upflush toilets, this product can leave an unpleasant odor if you don’t clean it frequently.
- Waste can stick to the side of the bowl
Some customers have complained about waste sticking to the side of the toilet. The problem can be solved by flushing the toilet several times – this will increase water consumption.
2.Budget pick: Jabsco Electric Marine Toilet
The Jabsco Series Electric Marine Toilet is an excellent choice if you want to build a bathroom on a budget. Main features include:
- Aesthetic vitreous chine bowl;
- Durable baked enamel seat and cover;
- Flexible impeller flush pump;
- Protected magnet type motor that is fully enclosed;
- Great performance due to stainless-steel shaft;
- Built-in back flow preventer.
The toilet is made from quality parts that will stand the test of time.
- Easy to install
You can install this macerating toilet with little effort, even if you are not a professional plumber.
- Evacuates waste effectively
Satisfied customers reported that they never had clogging, leakage, or smell issues with this macerating toilet from Jabsco.
- Works well on sail boats
Many Jabsco Electric Marine Toilets are installed on sailing boats and provide excellent performance.
- Leaking issues
A customer reported that the pump unit started leaking at the seals after several years of use. The possible cause was the shaft in the assembly not being adequately lubricated.
- A bit noisy
The noise produced by the toilet’s motor is a bit loud but acceptable. Some customers, though, are willing to sacrifice silence for a reliable toilet that liquefies and evacuates waste properly.
3.Our pick: Saniflo Compact Toilet
Saniflo SaniCOMPACT allows you to install a toilet anywhere without breaking up the floor. Let’s see why this product provides the best price for value:
- Professionally packaged
This product is professionally foam-packaged in the warehouse to ensure safe delivery.
- Great aesthetics
The Saniflo SaniCOMPACT has a modern, elongated design. You can achieve a contemporary look for your bathroom no matter where you need to install a toilet.
- Reducing water consumption
This toilet effectively evacuates waste with just 1 gallon per flush!
- Low noise levels
The pump is quieter than most customers expect.
- Suitable for small bathrooms
This macerating toilet model provides extra space in front of the stool. This will save you precious space if you want to install the toilet in a small bathroom.
- Does not contain toilet tank
This kit only includes the toilet bowl and the macerating system; you will need to purchase the toilet tank separately.
- May require two flushes
For larger quantities of waste, two flushes may be required.
- Large package
The package containing the toilet is large, but this ensures the safe shipment of the product.
- Has proprietary seat
When you need to replace the seat for the Saniflo SaniCOMPACT you may have trouble finding a replacement. The seat is special and you may not find a matching model at the average big box store.
- Cracks in discharge elbow
Several customers were dissatisfied with the product as it came with cracks in the discharge elbow.
Macerating toilet short buyer’s guide
What aspects should you consider when choosing a macerating toilet system? Do you need to know how to install a macerating toilet system? Before choosing a product, keep top of mind the following considerations:
Many customers care a lot about the way the toilet integrates into the bathroom’s design. Macerating toilets are available both in the round and elongated version. Some homeowners prefer the elongated version as it provides a more modern look and increased comfort.
- Easy installation
If you want to install the toilet yourself, choose one that has clear instructions. Otherwise, you may need help from a plumber.
- Gallons per flush
Even if you want to reduce water consumption, check toilet performance first. The current standard is 1.6 gallons per flush. Aiming lower than that could cause waste to remain stuck to the toilet bowl.
- Extra features
Some users may want nice-to-have options such as bidets, heated seats, etc.
Pick a toilet with a warranty of 2 years the minimum. If your toilet malfunctions, you will want to have it repaired or replaced free of charge.
The macerating blade should be made from stainless steel and be powered by a strong engine. Otherwise, you may deal with clogs very frequently.
- Included parts
Many customers prefer macerating toilet kits that contain toilet bowl, tank, pump, and macerating unit. Kits are more cost-effective and you don’t have the trouble of finding matching tanks or toilet seats.
- The number of decibels
A modern macerating toilet should be powerful enough to evacuate waste without making a very loud noise. However, a certain level of noise cannot be avoided. You will need to weigh balance with silence and make a decision.
Reasons to install a macerating toilet system
Even if a macerating toilet is not recommended as a primary toilet, there are plenty of good reasons to install one:
- Avoiding expensive and complex plumbing work
Macerating toilets are more expensive than standard toilets. However, they are preferrable to building an entire plumbing system to install a toilet in a hard-to-reach area. This option can be even more expensive.
- Less damage to your property
You want to install a toilet by the pool and the plumber gave you some bad news? Truth is nobody wants to break through the floor or drill through concrete. Installing a drain line for conventional plumbing is not just expensive, but also messy.
Forget about digging and re-cementing. You can create a reliable bathroom anywhere by installing a macerating toilet, with little to no damage.
- Installing a toilet in unusual locations
Macerating toilets can bring you comfort and convenience in off-the-grid cabins, basements, and workshops. They can be installed in areas located lower than your drain line due to the pump that pushes liquefied waste upwards.
- Fast and easy installation
Installing a macerating toilet can be a DIY project that will be ready in just a few hours. You may not even need a plumber to help. All things considered, this option is faster and cheaper than installing a typical toilet system.
How to install a macerating toilet system
Wondering how to install a macerating toilet system? The first step is getting prepared.
Before starting your macerating toilet project, make sure you have a venting source and an easily accessible water supply. Also prepare a discharge pipe between ¾ and 1 inch and an electricity source with GFI breaker.
- Connecting the discharge pipe
Use a discharging pipe of appropriate size. Avoid 90-degree turns. Make sure the discharge pipe is properly vented.
- Connecting to the water system
Connect the toilet tank to the water supply so you can flush water.
- Connecting the toilet to the power supply
The toilet pump needs to be plugged into a GFI outlet. Use a 15-amp electrical cord.
- Ensuring pump vent
The macerator pump needs to be vent into the home’s vent system. This enables air from the pump area to move in and out. It is also possible to build a new dedicated venting system; just make sure it complies with codes.
Now you have found the answer to your question “What is a macerating toilet system?” These toilets are very practical even if you have no idea how to install a macerating toilet system. Basic plumbing skills and following product instructions can provide you with comfort and