Macerators ~ are they any good?

I've been asked to turn a very small space into a wc. There is room for a pan/cistern and hand wash basin with minimal storage beneath. H & C water supplies can be arranged easily enough.
Disposal of waste is the problem. Nearest access to mains drainage is about 10M distant. There is no way of bringing mains drainage to this smallest room.
So, I'm thinking of using a macerator. Some googling results in very mixed reviews.
Any opinions or advice please, particularly on units that may or may not be recommended.
Many thanks, Nick.
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We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the
something like:

<orders popcorn and puts feet up>
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wrote:

Paging Mr. Parry!
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On 21/07/2011 01:45, Grimly Curmudgeon wrote:

<shove up, I want a seat as well>
:-)
--
Dave - The Medway Handyman www.medwayhandyman.co.uk

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On 21/07/2011 01:22, Nick wrote:

http://www.diyfaq.org.uk/humour.html#saniflo
--
Cheers,

John.

/=================================================================\
  Click to see the full signature.
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very amusing. Iiked the bit about expanding foam. it reminded me of another account of expanding foam misuse where the contractor was installing cavity wall insulation. He pumped it into the cavity wall of the house and also of the integral garage, but it wasn't a cavity wall to the garage. the owner later opened the garage door to find his car entombed in solidified foam.
Robert
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I've installed one for a relative who needed a downstairs loo. Due to lack of space and difficulty accessing the main soil pipe a macerator (Saniflo) was the only choice. It's been working fine for the last 3 years. Fortunately, the install I did didn't involve any vertical sections of pipe work! I'd hate to have to deal with a faulty unit at the bottom of a column of crap. The outlet pipe diameter was 22 mm but I thought that was too narrow so I modded it to go from 22 mm to 32 mm. If the thing ever packs up I don't think I'll bother trying to fix it, I'll just replace the whole unit. All in all it's been successful, definitely better than no loo downstairs.
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As the warning says if any women or children are likely to use it then forget it. You will regret it Robbie >

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What warning ? I do not regret fitting a Saniflo.
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In case it hasn't been said before we, in the UK, should remember the Saniflo is French and they have forgiven us since Agincourt.
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In case it hasn't been said before we, in the UK, should remember the Saniflo is French and they haven't forgiven us since Agincourt.
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Dave-UK wrote:

Yet.
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What do you mean 'Yet' ?
How do you know what I'll regret in the future ?
Do you think I decided, just on a whim, to install a macerator for no reason ?
As I said my first post, I installed it for a relative. This person is elderly and infirm and had trouble getting up stairs to go to the toilet, often not making it in time. Eventually I got fed up with cleaning up shit and piss from the carpets and the alternatives were a commode, a downstairs toilet or she goes into an old peoples home. As I didn't want a commode stinking the room out that left a toilet of some sort and a macerator somewhere downstairs was the answer. So I don't regret fitting the Saniflo and I won't regret it in the future. If the Saniflo packs up tomorrow I'll gladly replace it with another one. Maybe when you or your relatives are old and can't get up stairs etc. you might change your childish mind about macerators.
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We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the
something like:

Here, you want your rattle back? Might have someone's eye out with that.
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saying

Obviously you never read my comments. If you don't understand polite language, I did say if there are women and and children around then forget it. From my experience, women of old age do not use women' s sanitary towels or tampons - therefore that problem does not arise and also are less likely to have young children running around. If you have an upstairs toilet then you can direct visitors to that one. I once saw a macerator being dismantled which I noted with care. Although the idea of having a macerator in a place where 6 women of university age were living is questionable.
Robbie aged 75
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Dave-UK wrote:

They work as long as you don't put anything solid down them
In no particular order constipated turds, toothbrushes, condoms, tampons, cement tailings...
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Nick;2681252 Wrote:

Hello Nick,
I have reasonably extensive experience in macerators, having had several over the years.
In my opinion, if you use Saniflo Saniplus, you are going to enjoy trouble free performance for a long, long time.
I've had macerators where people have thrown everything into, q-tips, pads, you name it, and they were still working.
It is however, very important to avoid putting anything other than human waste and toilet paper in them. As I said, they cope with them, but, eventually they get clogged inside and start having problems.
My best advice is:
1. Avoid non-human waste 2. Install them so that they can be serviced easily and follow the installation recommendations. 3. If used regularly, change the membrane (20) every 6 to 8 years. This ensures the membrane is flexible and does not leak. If not used regularly, change the membrane every 5 years. 4. Give them a good clean every membrane change or whenever performance deteriorates.
They have very simple and reliable construction. A capacitor change is also a common occurence. Easy to do too.
--
asalcedo

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I had a similar constraint. My first one (Wickes, I think) lasted about 10 years. A capacitor went after a couple of years, I had to replace the internal flexible tube after about five. Had to open it once to remove a tampon. I replaced it when the control board went and have had no problem with the replacement in several years. I've done all the repairs myself apart from the capacitor. The guy who changed that recomended Saniplus. I've never had a pipe blockage. In my experience, it's not all that unpleasant having to delve inside, more psychological than anything. Less unpleasant or smelly than blocked foul drains or inspection chambers because you have reasonable access. The key tool is the wet and dry vac because you can empty the loo pedestal easily with that, and then the pump chamber. You may have to remove the pedestal to get at the works.
So yes, I'd still use them if constrained by space, or not wanting an inconvenient or unsightly run of 110 mm.
Not sure what other poster means by membrane. My first one was a centrifugal pump although sealed by a slightly complicated washer. This was a bit fiddly to seat until I got the knack, but I never replaced it.
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wrote:

Saniflows are neither sanitary nor much use as a lavatory. They are moderately good at flushing perfectly clean water.
Possession of one leads in some people to a condition known as the "Saniflo syndrome" this paradoxical psychological syndrome, where victims develop empathy with and have positive feelings towards their tormentor. It was first noticed in the Norrmalmstorg robbery of the Kreditbanken in in Stockholm in 1973. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stockholm_syndrome
The conditions necessary for Saniflo syndrome to develop are :-
1. The owner views the Saniflo as giving life by simply not taking it. Each day without a blockage is a gift. In this sense, the Saniflo becomes the item in control of the owners basic needs.
2. The owner endures isolation from other people and has only the Saniflo perspective available. Lack of information about the outside worlds response to their purchase keeps them totally dependent.
3. The Saniflo threatens to destroy the victim and has the capability to do so. The owner judges it safer to align with the Saniflo, endure the hardship of ownership, and comply with the instruction manual than to resist and face the most horrible consequences.
4. The owner sees the Saniflo as showing some degree of kindness whenever it flushes without blocking. Kindness serves as the cornerstone of Saniflo syndrome; the condition will not develop unless the Saniflo exhibits it in some form towards the owner, usually by operating normally for a short time. Owners often misinterpret a lack of failure as kindness and may develop feelings of appreciation for this perceived benevolence. if the Saniflo show some kindness, victims will submerge the anger they feel in response to the terror and concentrate on the Saniflo's good side to protect themselves.
The inventor of these devices was French. In 1958 Sanibroyeur SFA invented the "toilet grinder" and, having recoiled in horror from what they had done immediately exported it to Germany, the UK and the USA - all countries the French hated.
The original advice, to destroy the house, remains valid but it has been pointed out that it is possible to reduce, albeit slightly, the unsavoury habits of these devices. The following notes are provided as a service to those sufficiently deranged that they want to contemplate installing a toilet grinder and pump.
The first thing to do is to ensure the room is hermetically sealable and the floor and up to 2ft up every wall is tanked in 1cm thick kevlar laminate. Near the top of the room there should be installed a concrete or ceramic tube of 12" diameter leading upwards to an outside wall. The purpose of this will be explained later.
A 2ft Kevlar threshold across the door also acts as a barrier to females (it can often be raised to 4ft with beneficial results). Piped breathing air attachments should be installed near the Saniflo location.
Into the laminate set quick release fastenings for all fittings and fixtures such as the toilet bowl. These will, in the normal operation of a Saniflo, require frequent removal and refitting so easy to operate and robust fasteners are well worth doing at this stage.
When plumbing in the Saniflo read the installation manual and learn it by heart. Use any members of the family who have decided to stay to test you on your memory of obscure parts of it at frequent intervals. This should include waking you up at 3AM to ask what the minimum outflow gradient must be. No attempt should be made to fit these devices until questions such as "Page 96 4th line down third word in" can be answered flawlessly every time. Any deviation from any part of the manual will bring about immediate failure.
On no account should a plumber be used. Plumbers never have Saniflos in their houses so have no practical experience of them in use. Most plumbers refuse to respond to "Saniflo calls" so repairs are left to the "untouchables", poor broken men addicted to drink and herbal supplements who eke out a living trying to remedy Saniflo failures. Shunned by their fellow tradesmen because of their malodorous state these shadowy figures creep home to their mansions each night their morale boosted only be the knowledge of how much they can charge per repair.
Next is the matter of diet. The Saniflo will barely dispose of matter which has passed through the body and often not that if it includes fibrous or solid items such as cherry stones. A good Saniflo household will implement strict dietary controls to exclude meat, fruit and fibrous vegetables from the diet. The ideal Saniflo house will live on Pablum and Sennakot to ensure maximum longevity (of the Saniflo).
There still remains the problem of visitors. Ideally just outside the Saniflo room there should be a wall mounted shovel and directions to the back garden (or neighbours flower beds) for the convenience of visitors. However, some may be non-cooperative. To ensure no harm befalls the Saniflo the toilet bowl, at just below seat level, should be permanently fitted with a fine mesh screen made from stainless steel with a mesh aperture of no more than 1.5mm. A suitable soft spatula should be provided to aid the inspection of the mesh after use and a tin can provided where any non-compliant material may be placed.
There still remains the issue of failure or "F day" as it is known in the community of Sanifloists. This is the time some hours after installation when the Saniflo asserts its mastery and refuses to flow. Your hours of careful planning now come into their own. Obviously Saniflos only fail after pre-use. In other words the materiel to be disposed of is in the pre-pumping area (as it is known). The contents of the last use by comparison are festering in the outlet pipes (the post pumping area) both of which you are about to release.
Elfinsafety.
Any owner of a Saniflo is recommended to invest in a "Dirty Harry Contaminated Water Diving System" http://www.divexglobal.com/index.asp?id=2&ref '&ref2A1&conC2
This can be coupled to the permanently installed breathing point already in place in the Sanilav room.
Having entered and having had an assistant seal the room the Sanifloist, safe within their "dirty harry" suit and connected to their external air supply can start disassembly using the previously fitted quick release fastenings. Hopefully the kevlar tanking will contain the combined effluent released from the pre and post function chambers. Once the Q tip which stopped everything working has been removed and sealed in an evidence bag for DNA testing to identify the culprit the system can be re-assembled the door unsealed and the wife sent in to clean up the effluent from the floor.
It is rarely necessary to carry out this procedure more than twice weekly but it is a sad fact that some Sanifloists find even this simple regime to be too much. This is where the tube installed earlier is used. Seal the door, remove the visitors shovel and fit a concrete pump to the external part of the tube. Fill the Sanilav room with concrete.
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So what's your alternative solution then ?
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