How to Build an Outhouse

Posted by monsterguide
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How to Build an Outhouse

Back in the good old days, there was no such thing as indoor plumbing, so people relied on the outhouse. If it was not pleasant for them then, can you imagine what it would be like for people now? If you are looking to get back to nature, you can build your own outhouse. The first thing you need to do is to create a plan and select a location as far a way from your main house as you can. Then, you can start building.

You will need to dig a ditch about 3 1/2 feet by 3 1/2 feet and 5 feet in depth. Then you will want to start on the wooden form of the outhouse. This wooden ring can hold the concrete that is being put in. The wooden platform should be 4 feet and 10 inches by 4 feet and 10 inches with a center hole of about 3 feet and 8 inches by 3 feet and 8 inches. Then, place the wood over the bottom of the ditch.

How to Build an Outhouse

You have to build another wooden form about 2 1/2 to 3 inches thick. The concrete will be poured above the ground; it will not sink into the bottom part of the outhouse where the waste is going to go. Then you will need to build the walls as big or as small as you want. 2 by 4′s are recommended.

You can create a wooden toilet seat or you can buy one from the store but for authenticity, you should use a wooden seat. Make sure all of your connections are reinforced, the walls to the floor and the ceiling. You can add ventilation to your outhouse, you can use screens with covers or a 4 inch vent. You can optionally cut a hole in the door.

You may notice that most outhouses from the past have a moon crescent on the door. You can follow thy pattern or you can use another design. You have to remember that before building these that bugs and mosquitoes would feast on human waste so you may have to figure out a way to keep thus area clean. Keep the lids on the seats at all times, this should be a bit of a help. You may be better off building one for show and not for use. It would be an interesting conversation piece for your neighbors who will want to know why there is an outhouse in your backyard!

Outhouse Images



  1. Ron C said,

    on April 7th, 2009 at 7:23 pm

    I have been a carpenter for 30 years and the directions you gave for the base of the outhouse which includes the cement are very confusing.The old saying of a picture is worth a thousand words is applicable here I think. I am building an outhouse and want it to be a real showpiece for a customer as well as a functional building. Anything you can provide for suggestions for the base that will last a long time will be appriciated. The structure will be the easy part.