Portable toilets, such as Porta-potties, and composting toilets are also available for purchase. They are expensive, but require no plumbing and are self-contained. The composting toilet turns human waste into compost.
If you live in an area where you have a little extra space on your property, an outhouse can be constructed by digging a pit about three feet deep; installing a wooden box, with a toilet-seat-shaped hole cut out, over the pit; and erecting a small shed-type an enclosure around it. To release odor from the outhouse, you can vent it by inserting a 2-inch diameter plastic pipe through the roof and down into the wooden box.
A cut-out “crescent moon” or other shapes in the door will also help with air flow. If you haven’t the time or materials to build an outhouse enclosure, you can create privacy by hanging a curtain around the pit. Attach the curtain to nearby trees or to metal stakes or PVC pipe pounded into the ground.
We live in a world of conveniences and would have to make a major lifestyle change to live without clean running water. There’s no doubt that we’d miss our regular showers and baths, but you can learn to stay clean when water is in extremely short supply.
Sponge bathing is probably the best way to conserve water. Heat up the water, lather up a cloth or sponge with soap, and sponge it on. Rinse off all the soap with clean water and a clean cloth, then dry off with a towel.
- Five-gallon bucket
- Toilet seat lid (screw-on type)
- Plastic garbage bags (to fit the 5-gallon bucket)
- Toilet paper
- Disinfectants and bleach
- Washboard and tub
- Clothesline or rack
- Laundry soap
- Hand soap and antibacterial soap
- Paper towels or hand towels
- Toothbrushes and toothpaste
- Personal hygiene and feminine products
- Lots of water for washing hands, clothes, and dishes
- Other ___