For literally hundreds of years, men have craved space of their own, a place to get away from their wives, children, and the stresses of everyday life. In centuries past, gentlemen would retire to libraries or smoking rooms to share a brandy and conversation with other men. In the last half of the 20th century, dens and basement rec rooms became a common hideout for the guys. Now in the 21st century, a new type of retreat is growing in popularity: the man cave.
Man caves are, simply put, any space or room that is entirely devoted to the male gender. Outfitted with big screen televisions, mini refrigerators, stocked bars, pool tables, and anything else desired by the homeowner, a man cave is the ultimate hideaway where men can rest, relax, and enjoy one another’s company.
While some homeowners build their man caves indoors in basements, attics, or bonus rooms, many others choose to convert a freestanding outdoor building such as a garage, shed, or workshop into their man cave. However, one issue that homeowners must contend with is the lack of pluming in such outbuildings. While most garages and sheds have electrical access, few have the water and sewer connections necessary to install a bathroom. An easy solution to providing restroom access without water or sewer hookups (and a solution that will appeal to techno- and gadget-loving guys) is to purchase a composting toilet.
Composting toilets are an eco friendly alternative to traditional flush toilets, and they’re a great solution for outbuildings because they are waterless and completely self-sustaining. With their unique ability to convert waste into harmless, dry compost (a substance that looks a lot like ordinary black garden soil) and to do so without any offensive odors, these fixtures will provide the ultimate cool gadget for a man cave and will also provide a great conversation starter.
Composting toilets work based on the principles of aerobic composting. Bacteria in the compost break down waste quickly and odorlessly by using oxygen. To keep the compost well aerated, most compost toilets feature an exterior crank handle that must be rotated every few days. Rotating the handle causes a drum inside the toilet to turn, thus aerating the compost inside without the homeowner having to come into direct contact with it. After a period of about six months to a year, some compost will need to be removed for finishing, or final sanitization. This process varies depending on the type of composting toilet model, but in almost every case, the toilet is designed to make this a quick and easy process wherein the homeowner again does not have to come into contact with the compost itself. Once this finished compost has fully sanitized (which usually takes another month or two), it can be used in the garden on flowers, trees, or shrubs. It will look and smell just like regular garden soil, and will be totally non-offensive and free of harmful bacteria.
Composting toilets are available from several different manufacturers and, in most cases, will have to be ordered online or through specialty stores or catalogs. A good system will set you back around $1,500, but you’ll find residual savings down the road in reduced water costs. Plus, because composting toilets are a self sustainable and green solution, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’re creating a man cave that’s not only technologically advanced, but eco friendly as well.