4 Things That Can Go Wrong with Portable Toilets

Whether you’re ordering porta-potties to meet everyone’s needs for a festival or scheduling their delivery to a construction site, there are a number of common issues that arise with porta-potties. You could run into technical issues that could make things harder for everyone involved and put a damper on any event. This is why you need to be prepared for anything and know what to do in case of emergency. Here are four things that can go wrong with portable toilets.

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Not Having Enough Toilets

Not having enough toilets can have many consequences. For one, there will be constant lines of people waiting to go, and there’s also the possibility of people relieving themselves on the event or job site, which is never a good sight.

The solution is to have at least eight toilets per thousand people. Note that more is better since this will result in shorter lines and fewer conflicts. To be on the safe side, plan on having at least one porta-potty per 100 people present per hour throughout the day. Also, take guests and employees into account, and consider having more toilets if you’re serving alcohol.

Having a Single, Long Line of Toilets

Putting the portable toilets in a long line makes it harder to find one that is open, while it is easier to survey those in a U-shape to find one that is open. Furthermore, the U-shape means there may be a single line for the entire group while the line progresses relatively quickly. Set up several U-shaped groupings of toilets, and you won’t have a long line for the bathroom interfering with the rest of the event.

Furthermore, portable toilets should be located where they are convenient for guests. You want them near the eating area but not so close to where food is served that it makes people ill. Place porta-potties on construction sites near break areas and offices. Then have one or two more scattered around the site to prevent long lines or long hikes to the bathroom.

Not Taking Maintenance Into Account

Porta-potties are often located at the edges of the event to make it easier for the rental service to drop them off and pick them up. If you locate porta-potties in the middle of the event, leave a path that makes it easy for their trucks to reach the toilets. You also need to leave plenty of space around the toilets. The toilets should have at least 20 feet of space around them to give sanitation room to hook up their equipment. 

Not Providing Separate Hand Washing Stations

Portable restrooms have a reputation for being unsanitary. This leaves many trying to use the facility without touching anything. They may also be reluctant to use hand-washing stations or hand sanitizer inside of the porta-potty. 

Then there’s the fact that many people want to wash their hands before and after eating and don’t want to enter the porta-potty to do it. The only solution here is to offer separate hand-washing stations. Not only will it facilitate things for people who simply want to wash their hands but will also get people in and out of the toilets faster.

There’s a lot more that goes into renting portable restrooms than the average person realizes. Ensuring that there are enough of them is only the first step in ensuring your event goes smoothly.

Clay Miller
the authorClay Miller
I am the creator/writer of and I'm an advocate for oceans, beaches, state parks. I enjoy all things outdoors (e.g. running, golf, gardening, hiking, etc.) I am a graduate of the University of Kentucky (Go Wildcats!!). I'm also a huge fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers. I was born and raised in the beautiful state of Kentucky.