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pissy buckets

 
Posts: 300
Location: CT zone 5b
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For a couple months, my wife and I were doing a pee-only bucket- no poop. We'd put some wood shavings in the bucket, and every time someone peed, add more shavings on top. When the bucket got full, it'd go in a compost pile outside. This probably isn't the best method, but we weren't quite ready to go all-in yet. Then we stopped doing this for a while. I always rinsed out the buckets with water really well and dumped the rinse water into garden beds.

Well I went to get a bucket yesterday, and none of them have been used for a few months, but it smelled REALLY pissy. Anybody got suggestions?
 
Posts: 7951
Location: Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep clay/loam with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
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There are just two of us and we dump the bucket every morning....it is rarely more than half full. We cycle through several buckets that are also rain water buckets. We don't use any thing at all...no sawdust,etc, but add a few inches of fresh water in the bottom of a thoroughly rinsed bucket to start the day.
After dumping, the bucket gets a rinse and then left outside to 'air'. Usually there is no build up of odor this way but when there is we fill the bucket with water and some vinegar and leave for awhile and then rinse again.
 
Will Holland
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In the summer I was leaving them outside with water in it, but frozen buckets are no good. A lot of my buckets were gifts from the woods, too so they're starting to get brittle but still hold liquid. Are you just using them for urine Judith?
 
Judith Browning
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Location: Ozarks zone 7 alluvial,black,deep clay/loam with few rocks, wonderful creek bottom!
1704
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Will Holland wrote:In the summer I was leaving them outside with water in it, but frozen buckets are no good. A lot of my buckets were gifts from the woods, too so they're starting to get brittle but still hold liquid. Are you just using them for urine Judith?



They are just used as pee buckets and rain water buckets except for winter time....then they sit empty on the back porch or indoors in a corner waiting. Sometimes I use them for compost. They never get mixed with the sawdust toilet humanure buckets though....all are labeled.
Brittle buckets bad I lost a handle on a full one going out the back door once..........no fun. I've been very careful to check the handles ever since.
 
Will Holland
Posts: 300
Location: CT zone 5b
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Judith Browning wrote:
Brittle buckets bad I lost a handle on a full one going out the back door once..........no fun. I've been very careful to check the handles ever since.



AHAHAHA sorry that happened! I can just see it now...
 
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I am airing my buckets summer and winter and I haven't had an odour problem yet. Maybe they are too new. The only thing I have read in the Humanure Handbook that I consider wrong is Joe's instructions for removing full buckets. First he removes the bucket from the frame before the lid is on and then he suggests putting the lid on lightly without fully snapping it down. If I had arrived at my present age without spilling maple sap down my leg and into my boots or dumping part pails of water before reaching my destination I might try Joe's way. What I do with the humanure bucket is fully snap a lid on before removing the pail from the frame and I always test the handles while I am on level floor before getting to the stairs. Call me paranoid if you want but someone is always out to get you, mostly Murphy.
 
pollinator
Posts: 350
Location: S. Ontario Canada
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Choose the right materials for the task.
Plastic buckets are the wrong material for this application. They're known for holding odours.
Why not steel? Mild steel will rust unless painted. Catalyzed paints will be impervious to most things.
I have found 3 gallon stainless buckets at a discount clearance store for under $10.
 
Wyatt Barnes
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Roy, I agree with you that stainless steel is a superior material but only if the product fit the criteria. To me the buckets need to be 5 gallons and must, must, did I say must, have sealable lids. As such your buckets would not qualify for my needs. My buckets work quite well and don't take on odour readily plus can be de-odoured fairly easily when they do. I do have to eventually be on the look out for plastic fatigue but that should show up readily when using the snap down lid before a containment failure can happen. If I had an occasional use facility and reluctant users I would consider the 3 gal stainless if I could find lids.
 
Posts: 1947
Location: Southern New England, seaside, avg yearly rainfall 41.91 in, zone 6b
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Urine can be such a persistent odor. Cloth diapering then potty training and now toilet training twin boys has given me a deep understanding of this fact. The diapers made with artificial fibers were useless because of the smell when I went to use them on the new baby but the cotton and wool ones are still good.

I've used the pee only sawdust bucket method myself and not had smell problems but my buckets are relatively new. I wonder if the age and weathering has an effect on porosity. When the potties got pee-stained with crusty crystals vinegar helped but the best cleaner was hydrogen peroxide. Too expensive for big old buckets I guess.
 
Wyatt Barnes
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I have been told that plastic buckets will absorb and give off odour eventually but deodourizing simply involves letting a bucket sit for a day with dish detergent water in it. I haven't had to do this myself yet but the source was very reliable.
 
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