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How to Use Portable Toilets During Home Construction

Portable toilet in a construction site
Homeowners that build their own house can take pride in their accomplishment, save money, and have a home that is custom-made. However, this method of obtaining a new home often takes longer than other home-acquisition methods. The length of the project sometimes means the owner must live onsite in a camper to cut rental costs.

Some people choose to rent a portable toilet during this type of project. Doing so allows people to have access to an environmentally safe bathroom without the need for constant trips to a dumping station to empty the camper holding tanks. Learn how to make the use of a portable unit easier and more acceptable to everyone.  

Check Local Laws

Always contact the municipal office before the portable toilet arrives. Many towns allow the units on commercial building sites but may restrict their use in residential areas. Know the laws concerning how far from a neighboring property and roadways your portable toilet must be, as well as other considerations like permits.

Keep Neighbors Happy

Try to position the toilet away from the field of view of neighbors and people passing by. A camper can block the sight of the unit, at least partially. You can also rent a decorative event tent or build an enclosure that looks like a shed to cover the unit. The bonus is that the cover also disguises the toilet from vandals that often target the units.

Be especially sure to avoid conflict since construction noises and the mess associated with building a home can already be a complaint of many neighbors. A little extra effort to avoid any unappealing odors or appearances may help to create a more amicable relationship between people that will live next to each other for decades.   

Follow Environmental Laws

The company that supplies the toilet is the one with the responsibility to ensure the unit meets all environmental laws. Your responsibility is to make sure that the company you use is compliant. Failing to use a reputable business with updated toilets could mean pollution on your land. In addition, the company may not clean or service the toilet reliably.

The main concern is that the portable unit has a containment pan. The pan prevents waste products and the chemicals used in the toilet from reaching the ground and entering runoff that could introduce biohazards or other materials into waterways. Contact the supplier at once about any leaks or spots underneath the unit.

Maintain Hygiene Standards

Clean the unit as you would an indoor bathroom to keep it odor-free and inoffensive to users. Have handwashing or sanitation stations readily available, as well as plenty of toilet paper and paper towels. Schedule an added service to empty or replace the toilet after times of extra use like family events or when contractors are onsite.

Clean portable toilets usually have very little odor, but heat and humidity can increase the odds of an unpleasant aroma. Install air fresheners with motion sensors that dispense a little product when someone enters. A doormat outside the entry will enable people to remove most of the debris from their shoes before they enter.

Make It Safe

The path from a temporary trailer and from the construction site to the toilet needs to remain accessible. Mark a pathway with stakes and ropes, and enforce a no-debris rule in this area to prevent falls. Use outdoor-rated strings of lights to brighten the path after sunset.

Supervise young children while they use the toilet to prevent accidents, and install a door lock so they cannot enter when alone. Only install the unit on solid, level ground to avoid the risk of the unit tipping over or sinking into soft soil.

At Porta John of Tulsa, we have a variety of units to meet any commercial or residential need. We offer rentals for a single-day event or long-term rentals. Contact us to see how we can help you to have access to safe, clean facilities. 


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