Let's give you the rundown on how these weird walls, troughs and bowls we call urinals work as well as what you need to do to keep them clean and smelling great :)
How urinals work
Urinals are a great solution for men's washrooms. Users can stand shoulder to shoulder, have a chat and do their business. This means no line ups! It is the reason why men get in and out of the washroom so quickly!
Urinals have no doors, no locks and no toilet paper (somewhat similar to a tree). The male remains standing, unzips and wee's into the urinal. Urinals are installed on the perimeter walls so that users have their backs to people passing by.
The urinals are located just after the entrance and hand wash basins for easy access. Washrooms fitted with urinals always have normal toilets too which are located at the back because we know it takes more time to get the job done in them.
Types of urinals
There are two main types of urinal systems installed in men's washrooms...
1. Individual urinals
These are the most common and popular systems. They have a white bowl made of vitreous china (same as a normal toilet bowl.) They are mounted to the wall and all the ugly plumbing stuff is hidden into the wall. Large numbers of them can be installed along a common water supply and drain which makes for great usage of space, reduced water usage and no line ups during busy times. A well-designed washroom with individual urinals will generally have one or two of the urinals, typically at one end of a long row, mounted lower than the others. This is for the kids. A great design will also include small partitions between the urinals for added privacy.
2. Stainless steel troughs:
This is the old school system that extends down to floor level which allows anyone of any height to use it. These troughs can be used by a number of people simultaneously but there is no privacy, which for some men makes them feel insecure and that their space has been invaded. The troughs are very efficient due to a common water supply and drain which makes for great use of space and reduced water usage.
Urinals are generally fitted with manual (button, lever, pull cord) or automatic (timer, door regulated, motion sensor) activated flush systems to flush away the pee. There are also waterless or flushless urinal systems fitted for locations subject to high-level water restrictions. Either way, the urine does need to be flushed away on a regular basis to avoid build-up residue of uric acid which stinks and is unhygienic.
If you have waterless urinals, the cleaner does need to do more servicing and you need to use suitable waterless system urinal blocks and cleaner treatment products to stay on top of the maintenance. There is no reason to select waterless systems unless you have water supply or water restriction issues.
Blockages & bad smells
The two biggest challenges associated with urinal maintenance and cleaning are blockages from rubbish and bad smells from uric acid build-up. Eliminating blockages is impossible because humans’ do unfortunately litter (cigarette butts, chewy, rubbish.) However, there are great ways to filter out the rubbish before it obstructs the drain. The XO2® urinal screen products are designed for this very purpose.
Dealing with uric acid and the associated odours is not a problem and totally within your control. This just comes down to regular maintenance and the use of the right chemical for the job along with the easy cleaning skills required. We also highly recommend good ventilation in toilets including sufficient extraction fans.
XO2® Urinal blocks, urinal cakes, urinal screens and treatment products are a great way to WOW your male washroom guests. The added benefit is that they are also designed to look after the urinals and the associated plumbing and surfaces.
XO2® urinal cleaning products are safe for public areas and can be used in education, healthcare, facilities, hospitality and anywhere else you can find a urinal.
Need some help keeping your urinals tip-top? Get in touch with our team today, we’re always happy to chat toilets, bathrooms and all aspects of urinal maintenance!