Recycling urine at home?

I did a search for “urine” in thread titles and didn’t find anything I thought applied, for the last 10 years or so.

Anyways, at home, I generally like to be “green” (or “yellow” as it may be…). What sort of lo-tech methods are there to recycle urine? I imagine something like… I pee into a large container, and when it gets full, I set it in the sun for a while, under some sort of clear tarp that condensates the water out into a separate container, and then I am left with dried urea (and other byproducts) that I can use for fertilizer.

Would something like that work? Where can I find plans or diagrams? Or what are some other methods? Concerns (bacteria, efficiency)?

(I do realize that, despite my wanting to be “green”, any chemicals I ingest would be excreted as well, thus making my fertilizer non-organic. But at least I would know what chemicals would be going in (and coming out).)

No need to dry it out. Just add it to your compost pile. (You are composting, right?) Be aware that you need to maintain a high carbon to nitrogen ratio and so you should make sure you have a lot of material like leaves to balance it out. You might even add it latish in the breakdown cycle so that not too much of the nitrogen gets lost before you use it.

A septic tank is pretty low-tech and results in the at-home recycling of urine and waste water.

I agree with ftg. Both the water and the nitrogen are great for compost. I wouldn’t worry about loss of nitrogen. The main issue might be too much urea/nitrogen. I would google for articles about using urine in compost.

I was looking at composting toilets for an “off-the-grid” guest house. Many of them divert the urine from the solids and one recommended routing the diverted urine directly to an exterior flower bed.

The ultimate in low tech is to just go outside and pee on your compost.

Not at all what I thought this thread was about.

I do compost, so that is a great tip. This will be just the thing to finally get me to start testing my soil for the proper nutrient ratios. Thanks!

If you are recycling your urine via the compost method, there are a couple of considerations:

–Put the compost pile FAR AWAY from the house, or at least downwind.

–Make sure your carbon-to-nitrogen ratios are tight, and err on the side of too much carbon.

–Turn the pile frequently.

The smell of fresh pee is bad enough. STALE pee is revolting. Think of old baby diapers, or a litter box that needs changing.

Oh, and if you are peeing in the jar in the bathroom, make SURE you clean up any drips and dribbles Old, dried pee trapped in a small bathroom has a LINGERING quality. “Eau de Latrine”

Good points, VOW. A well-balanced compost doesn’t stink, but if one uses urine daily, it sure might.

There are a lot of online resources that refer to ‘straw bale urinals’. Adding the N-rich urine to the C-rich straw bale purportedly produces an optimal C/N ratio. Apparently you can plant directly into the bale once it has gotten good and pee-soaked.

Go to the Mother Earth News website and search for urine recycling. I know they had an article on it in the last few months.

Now, there’s a sentence I haven’t seen in a long, long time…