Everything a Business Owner Needs to Know About Workplace Washroom Urinals



gray granite public washroom

If you do not provide the correct amount of workplace urinals and basins, you might be breaching the health and safety regulations of New Zealand.

Have you ever heard of a toilet calculator?

It is used to work out how many toilet pans, basins and urinals are required in a building.

All business owners have a lot on their to-do lists. There is so much to think about! But how often do work washrooms make it to the top of the list?

It is worth considering because your employees use these facilities every single day. They could feel undervalued if their basic needs for facilities are not being met. Do consider that most employees spend more time in the office than at home.

Normal cleaning simply isn’t enough to keep your washrooms safe and presentable for your employees. Keep in mind that the facilities you provide should:

  • Be located in convenient areas.
  • Be kept clean and orderly.
  • Include soap or other suitable means of drying hands.
  • Supply clean hot and cold, or warm water.
  • The washroom should be well-lit and ventilated.

Consider using biological treatment. It is a revolutionary new way to keep your workplace washrooms nice and clean, without the use of aggressive chemicals that hurt the environment.

Types of Urinals

Urinals are a popular choice in the men’s bathrooms of most public buildings, educational institutions and office blocks. Models for women have also been developed but are rare.

They can also be found in some homes, although they are a lot less common in domestic settings than public ones. Urinals consist of manual flushing, automatic flushing or no flushing, as is the case for waterless urinals.

1. The Standard/Conventional – Manual Handle

Each urinal is equipped with a short lever or button to activate the flush and requires users to operate it as they leave. Other urinals have a foot-activated flush system that has the button set into the floor or a pedal on the wall at ankle height.

Conventional flush values use about 1-1.5 gallons of water per flush (GPF), which is quite a lot. Their affordability sustains their popularity.

2. The Conventional Automatic/Timed Flush

It is all about convenience. These urinals are armed with a timer, which flushes periodically, or an infrared sensor to detect usage. The amount of water used per flush is no different than a standard manual handle.

The drawbacks include errant flushes, the continued use of urinal cakes and the need to buy batteries for the sensors.

3. The High-Efficiency Urinal (HEU)

Defined as a urinal fixture that functions at 0.5 gallons per flush (GPF) or 1.9 litres per flush (LPF) or less. Fixtures currently considered as qualifying for the HEU designation fall into several different designs and flush volume categories.

They require high pressure and higher velocity for the supply water and a smaller opening in the diaphragm of the flush valve.

4. Non-Water Urinals

These are similar in appearance to the others but do not need water or a valve. There are many brands on the market of both water-free and low water urinals (i.e., those using 1-4 GPF).

Water-free urinals capture plenty of attention since they represent an obvious solution to a common water conservation opportunity. Seeing as urine is basically water, why use more water to flush it down?

They work best in settings that call for frequent and anonymous use, such as train stations, schools, colleges and universities, convention centres, parks, airports and sports stadiums.

5. Low Flush Urinals

These urinals come off as a compromise between the conventional and waterless variations. They operate just like a standard urinal with a manual or automatic flush system but use far less water. They have the highest initial cost, but the lowest operating cost.

How Urinals Work

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A urinal with a flushometer valve utilises pressure from the main water supply system to release a high volume of water at a rapid rate into the bowl.

Flushometer valves can pair with any fixture to achieve minimum flush volume requirements. Independent from the fixture, the flush volume can be adjusted through the control stop. The main water supply comes through the control stop. When the handle is pushed, the valve is opened for a regulated amount of time.

The drain pipes from waterless urinals need to be correctly installed to prevent the build-up of struvite (“urine stone”) and calcium phosphate, which can lead to blockages in the drainage systems. Undiluted urine can be corrosive to metals (except stainless steel), which is why plastic pipes are preferred for urine drainage.

Everyone knows that regular cleaning service is simply not enough for washrooms frequented by many people daily. That’s why Alsco Deep Clean is a necessity for all New Zealand businesses that demand perfect hygiene and nothing less.

Features of Urinals

Cost and Life Cycle

The cost of a urinal can range from $60 to $100, and the fixture can require nearly two hours of labour to install. An estimate of 30 years can be placed upon the life cycle of fixtures.

Urinal fixture replacement flushometer and valve components are sold separately.

This is advantageous because you do not have to buy a whole new set every time maintenance is required.

Waterless urinals require little maintenance seeing as the absence of a flush valve eliminates valve repairs and reduces opportunities for tampering. Additionally, overflow due to clogged drains and vandalism is not an issue since large amounts of water are not being flushed.

Popularity

Urinals saw an increase in demand in the late 1980s and early ’90s. The first generations of these inventions were controversial due to concerns regarding their reliability and performance.

Low flush urinals are the current national standard and the demand could witness an increase in nonresidential construction. With the impacts of global warming and meteorological patterns, countries are aiming to reduce water waste.

Waterless urinals allow for the pure and undiluted collection of urine for reuse (e.g., as fertilizer in urban farming) after appropriate treatment (e.g., storage). Surface water and aquifers are protected from nutrients and pharmaceuticals if the urine is collected separately.

This not only makes them economical, but environmentally friendly.

Energy Reduction

Widespread use of waterless urinals could result in an overall reduction in the use of energy. Cities and other water supply agencies would not have to treat and pump as much water.

Some water utility companies offer rebates and incentive payments to owners installing waterless urinals. They can range from partial to full reimbursement.

The rebate sorter has a wide range of programs from the Australian government, as well as state and territory governments. See EnergyMadeEasy.gov.au for more information.

Improved Hygiene

Water used by conventional urinals gives germs in the restroom the moist environment they need to grow. This is because urine is generally a sanitary liquid composed of dissolved metabolic waste and excess water.

Waterless urinals are designed to dry out between uses, which makes them hostile to bacteria and viruses. Pair this up with a touch-free experience, and the spread of communicable diseases is much lower.

There are a lot of benefits that come with installing urinals in your workplace and ensuring they meet the needs of your employees. This leaves a positive impression on all employees, potential business partners who visit your business and customers alike.

Keep Your Washrooms Spotless with Alsco New Zealand

Having a perfectly clean and well-equipped washroom in any New Zealand workplace is imperative. Clean and odour-free washrooms ensure a comfortable and pleasant working experience for your employees. It keeps the working environment sanitary and hygienic.

To have a clean and hygienic washroom, you need to take care of the toilets, ensure efficient hand washing and hand drying options, introduce effective odour control and make sure all the consumables are always in place. Your other option is to contact Alsco New Zealand and have them do all the hard work for you.

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Disclaimer – These articles are provided to supply general health, safety, and green information to people responsible for the same in their organisation. The articles are general in nature and do not substitute for legal and/or professional advice. We always suggest that organisations obtain information specific to their needs.