What is a Waterless Urinal?

What is a Waterless Urinal?

White array of Waterless urinals

A urinal without water might seem like a strange concept – but it offers an odourless and more hygienic experience.

Traditional Urinal versus Waterless Urinal

Traditional urinal systems operate with a flush, and as a result consume huge amounts of water. In fact, in busy commercial spaces, they can account for as much as 42% of total water consumption.

Waterless Urinals, which, as the name suggests, operate without water. And when you remove the flush, you naturally save huge amounts of water.

But how does this work? And is it sanitary?  

More than just a water-saving solution

Waterless Urinals are far more than just a water-saving solution. Although it may seem hard to believe, compared to traditional flushing urinals, a waterless system reduces odours, is more hygienic and sanitary, and is completely non-hazardous.  At installation there is no need for an expensive flush mechanism or water inline so fitting the system is simple.   And without the need for flush mechanism repair or solenoid valve or battery replacement, maintenance costs are minimal.

So how does a waterless urinal work?

In a traditional urinal, water is flushed below the bowl, with a strainer in place that is designed to catch debris. Over time, this water causes lime-scale to form, which acts as a breeding ground for bad bacteria. More aggressive cleaning is then needed, with harsher, environmentally damaging cleaning products.

Lime-scale can also lead to blockages, a risk of overflow, increased repair costs, and contributes to an overall negative user experience.

Waterless urinal features diagram

The solution

A waterless (also known as water-saving) Urinal eradicates all of these issues. Systems such as VERTECO’s Waterless Urinal System offer a hygienic solution through the use of a patented seal and bio-cartridge . Unlike other waterless systems that use a messy gel, the seal acts as a barrier that allows urine to flow down – but stops odours coming up.

Is this hygienic?

Yes – as long as daily cleaning schedules are maintained, waterless systems are cleaner and more hygienic than traditional flush systems in every way. And they smell a lot better too! Urine actually smells worse when it comes into contact with water and air – if you remove the water, and the bowl is able to dry quicker, no smell is left behind.

The fact that the bowl is dry also means there are no damp, moist places for bacteria and viruses to breed and spread. And because waterless urinals have no flush, they are completely contactless, meaning a further reduction in the risk of spreading bad germs.

Benefits of a waterless urinal diagram

Are Waterless Urinals Expensive?

Apart from the obvious water and energy saving benefits, waterless urinals offer cost savings through a reduced need for maintenance and crucially, can be retro-fitted to 95% of existing urinal bowls. The system can also be added to new builds with minimal cost – removing the need to plumb the systems in leads to an estimated 30% saving on project costs. 

The cost and environmental efficiencies on offer, together with a huge boost to the end-user experience, make the business case for installing, or switching to, a waterless system a compelling one. In fact, when implemented, installed, and maintained properly – they don’t cost organisations anything!

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