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A Brief History Of Portable Toilets

When you are thinking about port o potty rentals, you should also consider the deeper history behind them. These portable restrooms are a common sight in various mass events. They provide an excellent answer to the need for sanitation for large gatherings where there are no facilities. Here’s a brief look at where they come from and where they might be going.


Though chamber pots and other implements have been around for centuries, there hasn’t been a true portable sanitation solution since the portable toilets were invented in World War II. Developed to provide a portable toilet for those constructing ships in Long Beach, California, these early portable toilets were heavy and made of wood. Fitted with a large holding tank, it was essentially a wooden cabana. However, it did the job and ensured that workers didn’t have to do their business in the bushes.

These early portable toilets were not exactly comfortable and they didn’t have a lot of today’s conveniences. For example, they smelled bad and the ventilation was even worse.

1950s to 1960s

Companies who needed temporary toilets soon realized how useful the idea of a portable toilet could be. These were mostly construction companies and the like that needed them only for a short period of time. This is where a lot of the basic refinements came in. These portable toilets were mostly made of metal and wood though. This meant that they were pretty heavy and unwieldy to move around. However, they were better than nothing.

This was also the era when the concern about the smell was first dealt with. Formaldehyde-based deodorizers were used to help to cover up the smell around these portable toilets. It was a lot better than the original stink though and developers have since made deodorizers that smell better and are a whole lot more effective.

1970s to Today

The 1970s was the turning point for portable toilets though. This was because of the rise of plastics and fiberglass. Both of these materials were a lot more lightweight than the metal and wood of the original portable toilets. This meant that operators could carry more of them to a location and to also make it easier to dispose of the waste.

Plastic is especially popular nowadays because it is very easy to clean and disinfect. This means that portable toilets could be rotated out much faster. It also helped that developers and researchers made more effective chemical waste treatment processes. Combined with a portable toilet’s storage unit, the waste inside could be more effectively decomposed and processed so it smelled less. Additionally, today’s portable toilets are a lot more durable and sturdier despite the fact they are made of plastic. A modern portable toilet can expect to last a decade of service with proper maintenance.

Rent With Confidence

Today’s portable toilets are the result of nearly half-a-century of development. With innovations ranging from deodorizers to better storage tech and ventilation, today’s portable toilets can be comfortable and ensure that users will come out fresh as a daisy.

Smith’s Sanitary Septic Service provides port o potty rentals for any occasion and duration. Contact us today for more info.