What Is A Macerating Toilet System?

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Last Updated on September 9, 2022 by acechapman

Homeowners may want to add a basement toilet or macerating toilet system to their homes for many reasons. There are many options for designs, colors, and finishes, regardless of your preference. Sometimes, however, the harsh realities of a plumbing system may limit your choices and leave you with something that you didn’t have in your planning.

You won’t have much choice when it comes time to build your toilet or bathroom if the location of your bathroom drain is below grade. If this is the situation, you will then need to choose the macerating toilet system or upflush toilet. We’ll explain everything you need to know about upflush toilets if this is your first encounter with the term.

What Is A Macerating Toilet System?

Macerating toilets can also be called upflush or flush-up toilets. These toilets look identical to traditional toilets, but they work differently. The solid waste from a regular toilet goes to a trap and is then flung to the main drain. The drain line is located below the toilet and gravity pulls the waste down into the waste line. This is common for basement bathrooms.

But, this is not the case for upflush toilets. They send the waste to what’s known as a macerating device located below the toilet or wall. The high-powered macerator blades in an upflush system turn the waste into liquid and then pump the waste to a pipe at the main drain line.

Although an upflush toilet can be expensive, the price of installing a new plumbing system will make it worth your while. The toilet is also easy to use and maintain, so you don’t need to worry about its cost. If you are not close to the main drain, there will be no problems.

what is a macerating toilet system

How Does A Macerating Toilet Work?

Macerator toilets look the same as traditional toilets from the outside. You can push the lever on your toilet tank to flush out the waste from the toilet bowl with water. The only difference is what happens to your waste after it has been flushed down.

The force of gravity flushes the waste out of a regular toilet through the hole in the floor. An upflush toilet flushes the waste to the back and then takes it to either a pump tank (or an electric macerator).

How does an upflush toilet function after the flushing mechanism has been used? The macerating toilet system will automatically turn and use its rotating blades to grind the waste. The fine slurry is then pumped up to the PVC piping that has been installed. The horizontal distance could be anywhere from 15 to 150 feet. The water will then flow from the basement bathroom to either the sewer line or the septic tanks.

Upflush toilets were originally designed for small spaces. Manufacturers made it simple to install your entire bathroom under pre-existing lines.

These toilets should not be used as the primary toilet in homes with large families. The pump can become overloaded and eventually fail if it is used too often. Therefore, if you have a large family you might need to install a new plumbing system.

Types Of Macerating Toilet System

You can add two types of macerators to your home. These toilets can be classified into two main types: compact macerator and macerator pumps. This article will provide a better understanding of the two most popular macerating toilets, which can be found in various brands including Saniflo toilets.

Compact Macerator Toilets

This macerating toilet is the most luxurious, with a macerator built into the toilet bowl. These toilets look very similar to traditional toilets. However, the only difference is the cistern.

The solenoid valve controls the pressure water that is used to rinse the toilet bowl. To flush the toilet, you will need 2 to 3 liters of water. For larger flushes, you will need to flush the toilet with 3 to 5 liters.

Macerator Pumps

A macerator pump, which is located behind the toilet line, is another option for macerating toilets. This location is ideal, but you can choose another one if necessary. This type of toilet can be used for close-coupled or wall-hung use.

You can connect the toilet to a sink in your bathroom, a shower, or a washer in your laundry area. The macerator pump toilet will automatically start to release gray water when you pull its flush.

Features of Macerator Toilets

Certain features are required for your macerating toilet system to function properly and provide a full bathroom. Before you install your macerating toilet, here are some features to be aware of.

The Pumping Distance

Pumping distance is the distance at which water can be pumped. Pumping horizontally with a gradient of less than 1% should have a pumping distance of 20-60 cm. The model that you choose will determine the height.

Bacteriostatic Toilet Pans

Are you aware of the ways bacteria love toilet bowls and toilet pans? Bacteriostatic toilet pans have features that are specifically designed to handle bacteria. The bowls are elongated to prevent bacteria growth, keeping you and your family safe.

Anti-Limescale Treatment

In macerating toilets, limescale treatment is an important consideration. This treatment will prevent you from using too many cleaning products. This treatment will also protect your feminine hygiene products.

Flush Mechanism

Busy households can find noisy macerator toilets a nuisance. Some toilets have a flush mechanism that allows for quieter flushing. This helps to protect the privacy of everyone using the upflush toilet. We’ve also covered how to stop your toilet from running if it does happen.

Motor Power Rating

The motor power of a macerator toile ranges between 250 and 600 W. They are also more efficient and have quieter operations.

Toilet Seat

Other features included with macerator toilets include the anti-bacterial toilet seat and removable child locks. This is a great feature for families with children who find it difficult to maintain hygiene in the toilet.

Where Are Upflush Toilets Used?

Installing a macerating system is simple and does not require any plumbing work. This type of toilet is the best choice because it doesn’t require any plumbing work.

These toilets can be used in basement conversations, cabins, workshops, or homes off the grid. These toilets are often located far away from your home or other large properties. To provide additional assistance to your home, you will need an extra toilet.

Macerating toilets are a good option if you want a separate bathroom that is not below the natural lines or has low water pressure.

These sanitary fixtures can be placed in the best places, such as on the ground floor or an extension to your homes like a workshop or garage.

Additional basement toilets can be used. The macerating toilets can also be used in remote cabins. You can connect a sink to any model of upflush to make it even more convenient. A laundry area can be connected to the upflush toilets.

The length of pipe needed to reach the main drain line will determine the power of the macerator bathroom pump. The toilet should be between 10 and 15 feet vertically, and 100 to 150ft horizontally. The toilet pump must be strong enough to handle these distances and maintain proper water pressure.

what is a macerating toilet system

Installation And Use Of The Macerating Toilet System

Where traditional gravity-flush toilets cannot be installed or are too costly, macerating toilets can work. Before you start the work, make sure to check your local plumbing codes. Some don’t allow this type of toilet. If you violate any codes, you don’t want your work to be considered illegal.

Although you do not need pipes to install the macerating stoke, you will still need a water supply and a stack of plumbing. Copper pipes and small-diameter PVC are also required for installation. Make sure you have a power source to power your macerating pump. If you don’t have reliable power, you can use battery-operated models.

This is the list of items you should have in your reach before you start any plumbing work.

  • Water supply
  • Venting source
  • PVC discharge pipe measuring approximately 1 inch
  • GFI breaker power source
  • An isolating valve
  • Complete upflush toilet kits
  • The non-return valve should be the correct size

The toilet is approximately 30 to 80 pounds in weight. You should be able to lift the long bowl without causing injury. You should hire a plumber to assist you in installing your macerating toilet if you are unable to lift it. Better Business Bureau can help you find professional plumbers near you.

Installation and maintenance of the toilet will be easy if you do it correctly. The oil-filled enclosure contains the macerator blades, making it easy to install and maintain.

Installation Process

Installing a macerating bathroom is easy if you are a skilled DIYer. The entire process can be completed in less than half an hour. You must be careful as a mistake during installation can cause so many problems in your toilet.

Before you begin the installation process, ensure you have read and understood all instructions. Follow them to the letter. Ventilate the discharge pipe properly. You should ensure that the vents, so you can achieve the right angle, turns with two 45-degree elbows rather than one 90-degree elbow.

  • Make sure the first discharge pipe is in the right size. Do not use a 90-degree turn, but two 45-degree elbows to complete the turns. Ventilate it properly.
  • Next, connect the water system. This is where you connect the toilet tank with the water supply. It will allow it to remove waste.
  • The next step is to plug the pump into the power supply. This is also quite simple. Make sure to use a GFI outlet. Also, get an electric cord with 15 amp.
  • You must vent the macerator pump to the vent system in your home. This will allow air to flow into and out of the pump area. You must comply with all codes if you are going to create a venting code instead of using the one already in your home.

You won’t have to worry about any issues if you follow the directions and repair your macerating toilet correctly. These toilets are relatively maintenance-free, provided you use them properly.

Know what is safe to flush down your toilet. You should ensure that only human waste and toilet paper go down the drain. You should not use too much toilet paper as it can cause blockage. It is important to know how to properly dispose of human waste.

Tips For Installing A Macerating Toilet System Properly

Use Extension Pipes

An optional extension pipe is required if you plan to conceal your macerating toilet behind walls. You should ensure that the maximum length is not exceeded (18 inches). There are extensions available for most models. However, the Saniflo toilet is the best.

Beware Of Freezing

Protect your macerator toilet from freezing if you are planning to travel in winter areas. Freezing can cause damage to discharge pipes. To protect your pipes, you should use an approved and external wrap. This will prevent pipes from bursting and causing a mess.

Support The Pipes

Make sure you secure your pipes as you run them from your macerator toilet to the discharge system. The manufacturer can give you advice if you don’t know how to support your pipes. Proper support of your pipes can prevent backups and blockages. This will ensure that your macerating toilets are in good health.

Check That The Discharge Pipes Are Straight

To prevent toilet blockages and clogs, streamlining the discharge process is essential. A few bends are recommended by professionals. If you desire a smoother discharge flow, the bends should not exceed 45 degrees.

Connect To The Ground Circuit Interrupter

Before you use your macerating toilet, make sure it is connected to the ground circuit interrupter. This will ensure that your macerating toilet systems are safe from voltage and power surges. Don’t forget about disconnecting the toilet when you are cleaning it or maintaining it.

Advantages Of Macerating Toilet System

Macerating systems are worth considering for many reasons. These are just a few of the many benefits that they offer.

No Waste Pipe Required

First, you won’t need the traditional 100mm waste pipe with macerating toilet systems. It is an alternative solution to sanitary solutions for people who use it in mobile homes, homes, basements, or camper vans.

Convenience And Flexibility 

Because of their flexibility in plumbing requirements, Upflush toilets work well in small spaces. You will only need the pipes, soil stack, as well as a few plumbing tools to install the toilets. You can install it yourself in four hours, especially if your plumbing skills are good.


These toilets are temporary but they can be used for long periods of time. The macerating flush toilets can last for between 10 and 15 years without needing any maintenance or repairs. They are also very eco-friendly.

Easy To Remove And Reinstall

You can remove the macerating toilets or change their location if you decide you don’t need them anymore. There will be no damage to the toilet or bathroom.

Half bathrooms for guests can be created by macerating toilets. These toilets are also suitable for people with limited mobility, who may find it difficult to access the upstairs toilet. These toilets are best used when you’re renovating your home and don’t need to use the main toilet.

Disadvantages Of Macerating Toilets

Every positive thing has negative sides. These are the drawbacks of your macerating toilet system.


A macerating toilet can be very costly. It will vary depending on which brand you choose, but it is still twice as expensive as a regular gravity-flush model. These toilets are popular because it is too costly to replace the entire plumbing system. The upflush toilets are therefore more affordable.

Because they are more susceptible to clogging, macerating toilets might need more maintenance than primary toilets. It is important to pump your toilet regularly and make sure it does not run dry. Your pump’s performance is important as it can wear over time. A slow-running toilet is not something you want to have to deal with.

Issues Relating To Power Cut

The electric motors that power macerating toilets are dependent on electricity. If there is no power, then the motor will not work. It is a bad idea for these toilets to be installed in areas that experience frequent power outages. In order to avoid these inconveniences, you might look into purchasing battery-operated models.

Noise Levels

It is also known that macerating toilets can make too much noise. This can make it difficult for your family to sleep at night, particularly for those who love to study late. Because of the action grinder, the toilet pump makes a lot of noise. The liberty pumps are able to produce between 35 and 45 dB(A)

You might have to deal with some smells during the maceration process, in addition to the noise. You should make sure they are well sealed and vented to prevent any smells from coming out of the rear-discharge toilet. Some feminine hygiene products can have strong smells.

Regulations for Macerator Toilets

You may not need permission depending on where you are from to install a macerator. It’s a good idea, however, to check with your local authorities about building regulations, particularly regarding ventilation, drainage system, and plumbing. Before installing the macerator toilet, make sure you consult your local authorities to avoid any problems.

If the bathroom does not have a gravity-discharge WC, it may not be allowed to install an upflush toilet. You must notify the authorities if your installation includes new cabling in the kitchen or bathroom. You should have someone registered with ERA (Electrical Regulating Authority).

Wrapping up

A macerating toilet can make a great investment in your basement, workshop, or home. Save thousands on bathroom remodeling by choosing a reputable model like the Saniflo or Saniplus macerating.

As long as your DIY skills are strong, these toilet systems can be installed easily. Professional plumbing can help you avoid costly mistakes that could end up costing more. Keep in mind that the goal of installing the toilet is to reduce the cost of plumbing work. It is not a good idea to waste time.

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