Everything you didn’t want to know about toilet macerators
Sewage, waste and slurry may not be the glam side of plumbing, but if you don’t consider them when planning a new basement toilet or a bathroom renovation far away from your soil stack then you won’t want to deal with the (smelly) result!
Here’s everything you need to know about toilet macerators (but maybe didn’t want to).
What is a macerator and how does one work?
Simply put, a toilet macerator blends, softens or cuts up solid human waste into a slurry, before pumping it into the waste water system. Sometimes into pipes as small as 22mm in diameter.
A macerator isn’t required for every toilet, but there are circumstances when you’ll definitely need one.
When do I need a macerator?
A macerator is what you need when your toilet can’t be serviced by conventional plumbing. This might be because you want to go against the forces of gravity! For example, if you install a bathroom in your cellar – or another space that sits below the level of your soil stack and waste system – you’re going to need a macerator to prepare and pump the human waste up to where it needs to go.
The same might apply if you’re on the same level as the soil stack, but a good way away from it, like a toilet in a workshop at the bottom of a large garden or a toilet who’s waste pipe cannot legally be installed under the floor because of building regulations on cutting massive chunks out of floor joists
If you need a small pipe bore to get to the stack, then you’ll probably need a macerator.
Similar principles apply if you’re installing a sink, shower, washing machine etc in locations below or miles away from the soil stack; these appliances will need a lifting station instead of a macerator to move their waste water in the right direction.
What types of macerator are there?
Saniflo used to be the default option for macerators, but they’re no longer the only kid on the human waste block. When picking out your macerator of choice, there are more than a few things to consider, including:
- The power of the motor
- How the macerator cuts the waste up
- How far it can pump the waste
- How big the pipe can be and HOW MANY BENDS IT CAN HAVE (Capitals because it’s VERY important!)
- How much space you’ll need to install your macerator
- Macerator maintenance including cleaning (lovely!)