Updated on December 13, 2023


Created on August 5, 2017

Change: Waterless toilet

Upcoming Update

The Change: Waterless Toilet is a standalone unit that dries feces and vaporizes urine.

Developed By
  1. change: Water
Content Partners


Product Description

The Water Lab toilet prototype is a stand-alone dry toilet. It has a polymer membrane inside its storage container that dries out the excreta and vaporizes the liquid so that waste volumes are reduced. No energy input, external storage, or water input is necessary. The toilet is targeted towards refugee camps in the first phase, but commercialization of the product to households and construction sites is planned for the future.

The target region is global but with a first focus on refugee camps and crises in the Middle East and North African countries and water scarce contexts without access to sewer systems. Pilot testing has been completed in Uganda.

Target SDGs

SDG 6: Clean Water and Sanitation

Market Suggested Retail Price


Target Users (Target Impact Group)

Household, Small and Medium-sized Enterprises

Distributors / Implementing Organizations

The Waterless Toilet is currently a prototype but Water Labs plans to sell the product to NGOs and governmental agencies that will implement the product in emergency settings. They aim to provide waste management companies with toilets for their sanitation services. Water Labs intends to sell directly to end users as well.

Competitive Landscape

Manufacturing/Building Method

Change: Water Labs is fundraising to secure the scale of manufacturing, and is developing partnerships with low-cost manufacturers in Asia.

Intellectural Property Type


User Provision Model

Partnerships are made with the donors community so that NGOs and government agencies can buy and provide the toilets in emergencies. Water Labs are also discussing sales with waste service companies that rent out toilets to households. Direct sales to customers are also planned in a later phase.

Distributions to Date Status

A pilot test was completed in Uganda.

Toilet type

Container-based service

Evacuation method


Storage conditions

Container storage

Capacity (L)


Time until emptying

Once every three weeks

Design Specifications

The toilet is a stand-alone unit made of plastic. The design was made to be streamlined to reduce cleaning time and to fit inside a shelter. The toilet can be placed anywhere. When the storage container is full it is removed, emptied put back and the toilet can be used again.

Product Schematics

Technical Support

Technical support will be provided by the manufacturer once the toilets become commercialized.

Replacement Components

Replacement components, including the interior toilet pouch, are available from Water Labs from 3-15 USD.


Unknown; product is in development

Manufacturer Specified Performance Parameters

The toilet should reduce waste volume by 90-99%, reducing the necessary emptying frequency by 10-15 times, and increasing leveraging of existing waste collection by 2-3 times. This reduces the overall cost of sewage management by at least 30-50%. One square meter of the polymer material will vaporize 15-30 L/day (10-20 daily-person-equivalents) of liquid sewage, even in relatively high humidity.Interview with manufacturer

Vetted Performance Status



Proper safety precautions should be taken when handling human waste.

Complementary Technical Systems


Academic Research and References

Winn Z., 2021, Improving sanitation for the world’s most vulnerable people, MIT News Office. 

Paynter, B., 2018,  This Toilet Vaporizes Poop To Solve Sanitation Problems, Fast Company. 

Legg H., 2017, The Waterless Toilet, The Edidtorial.

Change:WATER, (n.d.). Available: https://www.change-water.com/solution/ 

Goal 6. (n.d.). Available: https://sdgs.un.org/goals/goal6

Compliance with regulations

Unknown, product in development

Evaluation methods

The product is evaluated for the amount of waste it evaporates.

Other Information

The Water Lab plan for 2018 is to "Continue pilots, iterative redesign to incorporate user feedback & operational learning, build out servicing model & supply chain sourcing. Launch by mid/late 2018, fulfilling pre-existing orders for toilets for pre-fab refugee shelters in MENA & improved sanitation for poor families in Panama."Interview with manufacturer

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