Self-cleaning litter boxes seem to be wondrous pieces of technology which have baffled most of humanity to such an extent that it’s precious little to be found about them researching online.
But worry not, dear reader, we’ve dug through enough information to get to some actual useful pieces of information about these devices, so that when you get on shopping for a new self-cleaning box for the mini-tiger in your charge, you won’t be entirely ignorant.
Before that however, there’s always the “whys” to consider. So why would you buy an electrically powered kitty litter box instead of a regular one? For the convenience, the answer quickly arises, since these things will make the unpleasant chore of emptying the litter box a weekly one instead of a daily one.
There’s also the highly unpleasant smell of cat waste that an electric litter box will make you do without by storing all the droppings in a sealed container.
So what’s there to know about them? First things first, these don’t all operate the same. Some of them are rotating barrels that spin around after the cat is done and let the solids pass through a grate into a container to be emptied at a later date.
One of the most popular models uses a metal grate to push through the litter and forces the solids into a plastic container placed at the front of the machine. The litter consists of liquid absorbing gel to neutralize the smell of urine. This is significantly less expensive than the other system and seems to be the most popular one, judging by the selling figures available from retail sites.
Virtually all self-cleaning litter boxes use electricity to operate, and work with 120V outlets, or 220V if you happen to travel abroad. They are convenient in this regard and there’s no adapter required, but judging by the reviews to be found online, there are a lot of things that can go wrong with them.
The most common problem you might encounter will have to do with the sensors these use to determine that the cat made its visit. This is a pressure switch, which lighter animals might not activate for the machine to start its cycle.
Conversely, if the cat just happens to tread over the litter box when simply walking to a location, it might activate it, with all the assorted noise. This is mainly a problem with the “box” system, as the rotating barrel will require the pet to enter it for use.
This will allow for its own particular set of problems, as it offers an enclosed space, which a larger cat might find constrictive. Always consider that ideally, a litter box must be one and a half as long and of equal width to the animal it is expected to service.
Since we’ve mentioned noise, you should know that these devices will usually be accompanied by an electric buzz, that might start becoming bothersome if placed in high traffic areas of the house.