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Do Waterless Urinals Smell Bad?

Janitorial Equipment

If you’re thinking about installing waterless urinals, you might be wondering about unpleasant restroom odors for your customers, patients, or employees. Well, you’ll be pleased to know that waterless urinals are actually designed to cut down on restroom odors. As long as you properly clean and maintain your new no-flush urinals, those unpleasant odors will stay in the drain pipe, not your restrooms.

How Waterless Urinals Work

A waterless urinal is an environmentally-friendly and cost-saving alternative to traditional urinals. Rather than employing a flushing mechanism to move water and urine through the drain, a waterless urinal is designed to clear the basin without the use of water. When this no-flush urinal is used, urine flows toward a disposable cartridge and seal within the drain.

The cartridge contains a liquid that is lighter than urine, so when the waste enters, it sinks to the bottom and then through the drain. The seal completely closes the drain at the base of the urinal. This keeps all of the gasses and odors in the drain, not the restroom.

Using Waterless Urinals Can Reduce Odor in Your Restrooms

Many people assume that traditional urinals would control odor better than no-flush models, simply because the water would wash down the urine and any smells that come with it. However, that’s often not the case. Flushable urinals may rinse the basin with each use, but they are also spraying particles of urine and bacteria throughout the air. Business owners typically use urinal cakes to combat the smell, but instead of eliminating odors, they only mask them. Waterless urinals, on the other hand, may actually reduce the unpleasant odors in your restrooms in a variety of ways.

Urine Can’t Stick to the Bowl

Purleve ZeroFlush urinals are made of stainless steel or vitreous China. These non-porous surfaces keep the urine from sticking to the side of the bowl. In addition, the design includes a deep, sloped bowl which quickly pulls urine toward the drain, rather than letting it linger inside the basin. Alternately, when a traditional urinal is flushed repeatedly, limescale begins to form, and it can start to absorb the urine before it makes its way to the drain.

Less Bacterial Growth

Urine on its own is actually sterile. It’s not until the urine is mixed with water that bacteria begin to grow and spread. Waterless urinals drastically reduce bacterial growth inside the bowl, and they also keep particles from being propelled into the air when flushed.

The Seal is Designed to Keep Odors Away

Urinal cakes may be slightly effective at covering up odors with a chemically created scent, but they cannot completely eliminate odors in the bowl and drain. A seal is designed to do just that. As urine runs through the seal and cartridge, the seal completely closes off the drain, blocking any odors or gasses from the drain from making their way into the restroom.

Properly Maintaining and Cleaning Waterless Urinals

Waterless urinals have been designed to keep unpleasant odors at bay, so if you begin to detect a smell from your restrooms, it’s likely a sign that cleaning or maintenance is needed. It’s important to note, however, that your no-flush urinals should not be cleaned in the same way you’ve been cleaning your traditional urinals.

Fortunately, it’s actually easier to clean a waterless urinal. Simply spray the inside of the bowl regularly with a manufacturer approved cleaner. This will break down any residual urine organically, without the need for scrubbing or even rinsing. In fact, scrubbing and rinsing the inside of the toilet could damage the smooth surface, creating tiny cracks or limescale where urine can begin to collect. For this reason, be sure to train your cleaning staff on this new cleaning method.

Replacing your cartridges and seals is one more factor in keeping odors away. Over time, the chemical agent inside the cartridge will begin to deplete, and the seal, which is responsible for keeping odors and gasses inside the drain, could loosen. There are a wide variety of cartridges on the market. Some may need replacement after 1500 flushes, while others could last up to 7500 flushes, so be sure to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines and replace these items as needed.

Making the switch to waterless urinals won’t just save on your utility bills, it could save on cleaning, maintenance, and unpleasant odors as well! With its non-porous finish and no-flush design, urine and bacteria won’t stick to the side of the bowl or be sprayed throughout the room. Cleaning couldn’t be easier, either. A simple spray of manufacturer recommended cleaner and regular replacement of the cartridge and seal is all that is needed to keep your water bills down and your restroom smelling great for years to come.

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