Flushing the Toilet with Shower Water

Flushing the Toilet with Shower Water


Flushing the toilet with shower water is something many full time boondockers do to help conserve water use. They usually use a large plastic storage tub to capture shower water while showering. Before using the toilet, they will turn off the water pump so that it will not draw from their water tank.

Boondocking at Canyon Ferry Lake, Montana

Flushing the Toilet with Shower Water

Boondockers will use a large plastic tub or plastic storage bin to stand in the shower with. They use this to capture water when showering, and prevent it from draining into their gray tank. See our other article, “How to Take a Shower When Boondocking“.

When pooping, they’ll pour some of that used shower water into the toilet to flush it down. Because an RV toilet is designed to automatically draw fresh water while pressing the flush lever, boondockers will turn off the water pump before flushing.

Add Water Into the Toilet Bowl Before Pooping

Before pooping,  pour some water into the toilet bowl. Having this pool of water for the poop will prevent it from sticking to the bowl. Poop that sticks to the bowl will often require more water to clean it all down. This is just a way to limit the amount of water you’re pouring into the black tank.

Create a Pool of Pee for Pooping

Some boondockers will avoid flushing the toilet when peeing. This will create a pool for the poop when Number 2 finally comes around. This also creates a urine smell in the bathroom, but that can be mitigated if your RV has a vent fan in the bathroom.

Do not leave pee in the toilet for more than 12 hours. Standing urine will eventually create ammonia, and that will create a much more foul odor than you can imagine. Also, allowing urine to remain standing for that long will create mineral deposits on the toilet bowl, making it more difficult to keep clean.

Read our other article, “Can I Still Flush the Toilet When Boondocking?”

Other Ways to Use Reclaimed Shower Water

  • To drown a campfire
  • Water house plants
  • Wash dishes
  • Wash clothes
  • Wash your vehicle

1 thought on “Flushing the Toilet with Shower Water”

  1. Could you route your grey water to the toilet directly?

    Also, could you have a pump and hose from grey water to use outside? Does grey water include food particles and grease presumably from dishes, so probably not ideal for washing outside of the vehicle, equipment, etc.?


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