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What We Do

Clivus Design Process: The Advantage of Experience

With over 30 years in business, Clivus has built the expertise necessary to tackle the full range of issues associated with the design and use of composting toilets and greywater systems.

Launching the Project

Even before a project goes forward, Clivus helps clients fully understand the technology and benefits of the proposed systems. Although Clivus systems have a long history of success, details of their function are often not fully understood by prospective clients.

To address this issue, Clivus often contributes the following services:

  • In-person educational presentations
  • Customer referrals
  • Visits to Clivus installations where we can fully demonstrate our systems.

Contact Clivus to discuss these options.

Leading the Design Process

Composting Toilets

Clivus works primarily with engineers and architects to design systems into projects, for both separate bathroom and multi-purpose buildings. Exceptions to this general rule include projects calling for the Clivus Model M54 Trailhead or other pre-designed or pre-fabricated structures supplied by Clivus.

Based upon usage data and other design considerations, Clivus:

  • Recommends the composting system(s) model and quantity appropriate for the project.
  • Provides the associated budget.
  • Provides product technical information to support the creation of complete construction plans.
  • Reviews plans from preliminary through construction documents to ensure that composting and greywater systems are properly integrated within all aspects of the project.

As the project progresses further, Clivus provides:

  • Written specification information.
  • Assurance of proper installation of its equipment by project plumbing sub-contractors.
  • Maintenance training as well as maintenance services.

Greywater Systems

Clivus custom designs all greywater systems. Accurate usage data, a site plan, and a soil percolation test (or soils report) are the basis for a plan consisting of a design logic, plan-view, section-view, and product specifications. This plan may be in the form of a sealed engineered drawing if requested. Following the acceptance of the plan by the project team and regulators, Clivus provides the essential greywater equipment and ensures proper installation, typically by plumbing and/or landscaping sub-contractors. It is important to understand that most states and provinces do not have well-defined greywater regulations, so regulatory approval for a greywater system can be difficult.

Understanding the Full Range of Design Applications

Clivus projects include systems which are used thousands of times daily; toilets in dense urban areas as well as in very remote locations; toilets in commercial structures (e.g., offices, retail, and manufacturing buildings); off-grid projects; and sustainable building projects. Clivus also has a broad range of experience with permitting and regulatory issues, which often arise in locations where our technologies are unfamiliar. By working closely with designers, we can bring this knowledge to bear at all points of the process.

Developing a Maintenance Plan

The Clivus compost system requires regular maintenance to ensure proper conditions for composting, and special maintenance to remove compost system end-products. Of course, occasional replacement parts (fans, pumps) are also necessary.

The regular maintenance consists of:

  • Adding and mixing "bulking material" (pine shavings) into the waste
  • Monitoring moisture content to ensure good composting conditions.

When systems are used at their capacity maintenance is required once per month. The frequency of compost liquid end product removal depends upon the size of the liquid storage tank. Where use of the liquid end-product as fertilizer is not permitted, it must be disposed of according to governing regulations. The dry compost end-product is removed at most once per year, but more typically, there are several years between removal events. If the dry compost end product is used as a soil conditioner, it will be shoveled out. If governing codes forbid the use of the solid end product, it can either be shoveled or pumped out.

The Clivus Greywater system requires no regular maintenance beyond periodic monitoring of the soil-water interface. Clivus offers maintenance services to all its customers, ranging from complete system maintenance to periodic inspection and reporting. In locations beyond our immediate service area, Clivus provides maintenance through local sub-contractors. Call Clivus to discuss maintenance for your installation.