For PROs in cold-weather climates, one of the challenges is going to pump out a portable toilet only to discover that there is frozen waste in it. Chunks of frozen waste can clog the pump hose and make a difficult situation worse.
It’s important that only liquid waste is pumped from the tank. So, what do you do if it’s frozen? The infographic below details some of the tactics that can be used to deal with frozen waste. Find the method or two that work best for you to minimize delays and frustrations.
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Tactics for Dealing with Frozen Waste
For Tanks with Smaller Chunks/Blocks of Frozen Waste
- Pump around the chunks of frozen waste or move them to the side and pump them another time after they have thawed. Extra brine can be added to the tank to aid the thawing process.
- Chop the frozen waste up as much as possible, add fresh brine to the tank and chop it up some more until it can be pumped.
- Use a shovel or grabber tool to move the frozen block(s) into a bucket, garbage can or watertight garbage bag so it can be taken back to the shop to thaw and be pumped later.
- Carry hot water on the truck (some trucks are even equipped with a boiler) and use it to thaw the frozen waste so it can be pumped.
For Tanks with Mostly or Completely Frozen Waste
- Use the switch-out method, which means bringing a clean toilet to the site and removing the frozen one. The frozen toilet can be brought back to the shop to thaw until it can be pumped and cleaned.
- Use split tanks like the ones offered by PolyJohn. They are smaller tanks that can be removed and replaced. The tank with the frozen waste can be taken back to the shop to thaw and be pumped. This method saves PROs the trouble of switching out the entire toilet.