The Ultimate Toilet for Cats: A Review of the CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box

Look at a picture of the CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box 120 and you’ll probably get a pretty good idea of what it’s for. After all, it looks like a toilet! And that’s precisely what it is, except it’s for your cat. And in all likelihood it’s probably much more advanced than what you use, because this one flushes itself, and it washes itself too. Unlike other ordinary litter boxes, this cat toilet flushes the waste away. And it cleans and dries the cat box and litter so that your cat can use it again and again.

So let’s make this clear—with the CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box you won’t have to change anything or replace anything on a daily basis. That’s because of the granules on the bowl which look just like cat litter. You won’t ever have to buy cat litter with this CatGenie 120 system in place.

Here you can choose among the 3 available settings. With the automatic “Cat Start” setting it will clean itself starting from 10 minutes after your cat uses it. Or you can set it to clean itself 1 to 4 times a day. You can also just use the “Push Start” option to clean it manually at any time you want. To keep your kids from accidentally flushing the litter box, it also features a child-lock mode.

What you will need is the SaniSolution cartridge for cleansing, which is recyclable and biodegradable. Your purchase already comes with a SaniSolution cartridge, and it is good enough for 120 washes. That’s usually good enough for 3 months of use if you have a single cat. It can last 2 months if you have a pair of cats at home. It also comes with a box of washable granules, and those will last for 6 months.

Since you can’t be sure that your finicky cat will take to the CatGenie 120, you have 90 days in the money-back guarantee to find out. And the build quality is excellent, and as a result the manufacturer feels secure enough to offer a 2-year warranty.

Setting Up the CatGenie 120

Upon delivery, you get the CatGenie 120 litter box plus an assortment of accessories. It includes the Laundry or Utility Room T-adapter, along with the Powder Room or Bathroom T-adapter. It also comes with a SaniSolution cartridge along with a box of washable granules.

Now for options, you can also get the sidewalls, which prevent the litter from falling off. Then there’s also the Cat Dome that’s suitable for cats who weigh no more than 15 pounds. This dome can contain the litter and the urine of male cats.

All you have to do to set up the CatGenie 120 is to hook it up to a cold water line as well as to a waste-water drain like a toilet or washer’s drain pipe. Then you plug it in to a wall electrical socket and you’re good to go. On average, the entire setup process should take about 15 minutes or so.

So you don’t really need a plumber to install this for you. The ½-inch T-adapter works with the vast majority of bathrooms and the 1-inch T-adapter will work for just about every laundry room. Now if your bathroom and laundry room have non-standard hookups, you’ll just need to get a different T-adapter. While this is a separate purchase, it shouldn’t be a problem to buy. They’re available at most home center retail stores and they’re very cheap.

You don’t really need anything else as your purchase comes with everything that’s necessary for the CatGenie 120 to work. Whether you’re going to set it up in a bathroom or laundry room, you have

Features of the CatGenie 120

Here are some of the features you can look forward to with the CatGenie 120:

  • The automatic features apply to scooping, flushing away the waste, and self-cleaning.
  • It needs to hook up with a cold water line, a waste water drain, and an electrical socket.
  • It uses the biodegradable SaniSolution cartridge along with the reusable and washable granules.
  • It can be used by owners of 3 cats at the most.
  • It comes with 3 mode settings

Mode Settings

The cleaning of the litter box can be activated in several ways, and the mode will dictate how that goes.

1. Cat Start. With Cat Start, the activation is instigated by your cat’s use of the litter toilet. Your cat’s presence initiates the countdown to the automatic cleaning cycle, which starts 10 minutes after your cat leaves. The CatGenie has sensors that detects when your cat leaves the litter area. This departure starts the 10-minute countdown for the Cat Start automatic cleaning cycle.

It won’t start while your cat is still using the litter area. And if another of your cats come in to use the CatGenie, the countdown stops and then restarts from the 10-minute mark after this second cat leaves.

This setting is actually 2 modes. The Active mode is for the day time, when the CatGenie just automatically cleans the waste 10 minutes after the cat leaves. This mode lasts for 14 hours. But there’s also the Sleep mode which lasts for 10 hours, and which doesn’t automatically clean the waste after 10 minutes. This delay keeps you from being disturbed during your sleep hours because the cleaning process produces some noise that may interrupt your blissful sleep.

During the sleep mode, it is still possible for you to just push the button for manual cleaning if you wish it. The CatGenie reverts to the Active mode after the requisite 10 hours, and if there’s any waste then the litter box starts its cleaning process.

In Cat Start, the SaniSolution cartridge also offers 240 washes instead of just 120. In this setting, the device needs less solution for every time it washes because the CatGenie cleans and flushes away the waste right away.

This setting is suitable for owners who have only 1 or 2 cats. If there are more cats, the unit may have to run almost continuously. Or it can create some issues if the cleaning cycle is interrupted too frequently.

2. Auto Start. Now if you have more than a pair of cats in the house, this setting may be more suitable. This setting allows you to run the cleaning cycle 1 to 4 times a day. It will start at the same time each day if you set it to once a day. Set it to 4 times a day, and it will run every 6 hours.

However, it doesn’t have a digital clock, so you can’t really input at what time you want the cleaning cycle to begin. Instead, it will take its cues from the time you program it to this setting. So if you set it at noon, it will start at noon every day. If you set it to twice a day, then it will automatically clean the waste at noon and at midnight every day.

To use this optimally, you’ll want to learn your cats’ litter box habits to determine at what time it’s best to switch to Auto Start. With this setting, the SaniSolution is rated for 120 washes.

3. Push Start. With this setting, you just push the start button and it will immediately start the cleaning cycle. It’s a great way to do some cleaning during the Sleep Mode or in between the Auto Start cleanings when you feel you can’t wait for the cleaning cycle.

Will Your Cat Use the CatGenie 120?

That, of course, is the $64,000 question. And the answer, like it is for any other litter box, is a definite “maybe”. It’s for that reason CatGenie offers its own detailed Cat Acclimation Guide to help you out.

In general, it’s a gradual process. CatGenie recommends that you put the CatGenie right next to the old litter box. Then you stop cleaning out the old litter box. As that old litter box gets dirtier, your cat will inevitably investigate the CatGenie and use it.

You’re also supposed to act normally, although you should praise your cat when they do make the switch to the new CatGenie 120. But don’t hover or flow them to the area. And it’s also good idea to keep your kids and dogs away from the litter box location. During the first week or so, it may be best to run the cleaning cycle manually when your cats are sleeping.

Just remember, you have 90 days to see if they’ll make the switch. But it shouldn’t take more than a week or two for your cats to see that the new litter box is the better deal. Once they begin to use the CatGenie, you can then dispose of the old litter box.

Additional Info

Here are some tips and other useful facts that can help you out if you use the CatGenie 120:

  • You should have enough space around the CatGenie so that your cats can come on out comfortably.
  • The granules are completely dried after the cleaning cycle, so they can use the dry litter bed in comfort when they do their business.
  • The cleaning process takes about half an hour, and for most of that time it is very quiet. But there will be 3 short periods during this cycle when the gadget will make some noise (which cats find disturbing, by the way). The volume is similar to the noise your washing machine makes.
  • The washable granules are perfectly safe for your cats. They’re made from natural ingredients and tested synthetics. Even if your cat swallows the granules, they will just pass through your cat’s digestive system.
  • The SaniSolution cleaner has also been tested for safety. Its ingredients are the same as the ones veterinarians use to clean their pet examination and operating areas.
  • You can’t refill the SaniSolution cartridge. It’s not a printer cartridge! It is tamperproof so you can substitute any other solution that may prove unsafe.
  • The cartridge will run for 120 washes
  • For Cat Start, the cleaning cycle starts 10 minutes after the last cat leaves. But for Auto Start, the wait is only for 60 seconds, which resets when another cat jumps in to use it.
  • You should only use the washable granules for the CatGenie Cat Box. Ideally, you should use only the Washable Granules that come with the litter box. You must never use any other granules, and you never use cat litter. If you do, you’ll just damage the cat box and clog your pipes. And your warranty is even voided.
  • In theory, there’s really no need to change or replace the washable granules. They’re cleaned and scrubbed every time the CatGenie initiates the cleaning cycle. But in practice, you may have to use another box of the washable granules after 6 months or so. That’s because the granules may be kicked out of the bowl or they may stick to solids. Just keep the washable granules topped off at the safe-level line.
  • The washable granules that come with the system are very safe for your septic or sewer system. They’ll biodegrade in about 9 months. And besides, only a few granules will stick to solids and go down the drain.
  • You should also use the Machine Maintenance Cartridge about 4 times a year, and this will clean your CatGenie. Doing so prevents the box from clogging up and it also protects the sensor from any buildup.
  • Get the Dome accessory if you have a kitten or a playful cat, so that they don’t play around during the cycle.
  • Get the Dome and the Sidewalls if your cat likes to dig or if you have a male cat that urinates on the sides of the CatGenie.
  • A nice mat near the unit can protect your floor from cat litter tracking.
  • If you have any problem, you can just call the toll-free 1-888-SELF-WASH. The customer support personnel can help you trouble shoot the problem. The CatGenie 120 will also be repaired or replaced if you have any mechanical problems.

Pros and Cons

With the CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box you have a fully automatic litter box that eliminates the need for you to scoop and dispose of the waste yourself. You won’t have any contact with the litter whatsoever, and the unit keeps itself clean on a regular basis.

It’s is easy to set it up, and the build quality is terrific. It’s even environmentally friendly and hypoallergenic. It’s great if you have a cat or two and if you like going on long trips. And though it is still a bit pricey, it’s not as expensive as some of its competitors.

On the other hand, it may not be your ideal litter box solution if your cat comes up with soft waste. The waste may stay on the unit and your cleaning cycle can then pound the waste, and that can result in a very bad smell. In fact, the granules don’t really cover up the smell of the cat urine and feces. They’ll only be gone once the cleaning cycle is complete.

It is also entirely possible that your system may get clogs after a period of time, though admittedly this doesn’t happen a lot. You may also have to deal with lots of tracking granules. That can be very bothersome. And you should use the Sleep mode, as it can get loud during the dead of night. If it starts cleaning during the early morning hours, it can interrupt your sleep if you’re a light sleeper.

Conclusion

So is the CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box ideal for you? That depends on who you are. It’s not really the best solution if you have more than 2 cats, as the constant cleaning can stress the unit during the Cat Start or it can have a very bad smell for Auto Start. It’s also not really best for small apartments and houses. It doesn’t do well with cats that produce soft feces, and with very playful kittens that will just mess around with the granules.

You may also want to look for another solution if you want a truly quiet litter box. And it’s not perfect for those who won’t take the time to do proper maintenance on the litter box.

On the other hand, it will be good for you if you only have a cat or two and you have enough space in your laundry room or bathroom. It’s best if you know that your cat only produces firm stools.

By using the CatGenie Self Washing Self Flushing Cat Box 120, you won’t have to endure any contact with smelly liter that’s full of germs. You won’t have to risk breathing in litter dust. And you won’t get problems like toxoplasmosis, which a serious problem if you’re pregnant or if you’re taking steroids and other drugs that suppress your immune system.

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