The Evolution of the Dirtiest Business: A Short History of Porta Potties in Reading, PA

March 1, 2019 10:10 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Porta potties are a staple at outdoor events and public spaces. In fact, you’d probably be shocked to attend an outdoor concert or party and find that no portable toilets were available.

However, porta potties in Reading, PA haven’t always been around. One of the dirtiest businesses has evolved just like all the others we rely on today. Here’s a quick look of how the portable toilet industry was created, shaped and grown over the years.

Ancient portable toilets

Porta potties actually got their start far back in history—even before the creation of indoor plumbing! Ancient Egyptians created a “luxury” device that consisted of a wooden stool with a hole and a pot attached beneath. This was the rudimentary formation of the toilet seat and tank found in modern porta potties in Reading, PA.

Later on, “chamber pots” were used across the world by royals and the public alike, all the way through the mid-20th century. These were essential portable pots for people to relieve themselves in, usually during the night in one’s personal bedchambers. Chamber pots needed to be emptied and cleaned regularly, just like portable toilets today.

The creation of the modern porta potty

The first porta potty ever created originated in Long Beach, California around 1940. The device was used in industrial shipyards to enhance workers’ productivity on the job, since they no longer needed to travel long distances to use the bathroom.

This original porta potty was constructed out of wood and a metal tank, which was easily replicable by other industries. Soon, porta potties could be found in a wide variety of applications, all in this wooden form.

Porta potty evolution

Because the original porta potty design was such a hit across so many industries, companies started to find ways to make them lighter, cleaner and easier to use around the 1970s. Wood was switched out for fiberglass materials, and then later transitioned to polyethylene plastic, which is the material most porta potties are made of today.

This transition aided in many companies’ abilities to more easily transport, install and clean porta potties on their job sites. Plastic portable toilets were also much more durable than the former fiberglass ones. Deodorizers were introduced and evolved over time, so that the porta potties would remain clean-smelling and pleasant to use.

Additionally, after the transition to plastic in the 1980s, porta potty companies began evolving the range of amenities available in their porta potties, introducing sinks, fans, air conditioning, lighting and much more. All of these improvements were intended to create a more comfortable user experience.

Most recently, luxury toilet trailers were introduced to the porta potty market, providing a cleaner and more sophisticated option for event bathroom rental.

Reliable, clean porta potties in Reading, PA

Scotties Potties was founded in 1987, during the height of porta potty evolution, to bring reliable porta potty services to companies and event hosts within Pennsylvania.

If your worksite or event is in need of portable toilets, give Scotties Potties a call. We offer a breadth of options, from standard porta potties to rentable toilets and even comfort trailers!

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