What Are the Pros and Cons of an Electric Toilet?

Pros of an electric toilet include easy installation and use and minor maintenance. Cons include the inability to use the toilet during a power outage, as the electric toilet's heating element and cooling fan require continuous electricity.

Electric toilets are grouped into the category of incinerating toilets. They require no access to water and are used by inserting a paper liner that is flushed into an incinerator after the user is finished. After two to four uses, the incinerator is activated. Incinerating toilets heat all waste to around 1,200 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour, kill any remaining bacteria and turn the product to disposable ash. Natural gas and propane incinerating toilets are available as an alternative to electric.

Electric toilets can be installed in any room with access to a 120-volt outlet. An exhaust pipe measuring 3 inches in diameter runs from the back of the toilet and outside the building to route fumes or odors outside the house. Electric toilet maintenance requires frequent disposal of the ash produced. This should be done on a regular basis, as buildup can damage the toilet's heating element.

Electric toilets are also available in composting models. For these, human waste is emptied to a spot underneath the toilet, where it disappears after three to six months of composting. During that time, the user is required to lay peat moss or lime on top of the waste, stirring to facilitate the composting process.