Waterless Urinals Spell Savings for Retail Stores

Green Retail Space

An increasing number of localities, office buildings, schools, and retail stores are installing waterless urinals.  This is probably because waterless urinals have undergone years of tests, trials, and evaluations, in all kinds of facilities and have proven their value.

Some states and school boards, such as the Arizona School Facilities Board, do not mandate the installation of waterless urinals but strongly recommend it.  Further, some major retailers in the U.S. and around the world have received considerable praise by installing waterless urinals.

According to one mega-retailer CEO, “Being a good steward of the environment and being an efficient and profitable business, are not mutually exclusive. In fact, they are one and the same.''

And no wonder!  A single waterless urinal can save as much as 45,000 gallons of potable water annually—as much as a typical American household uses in an entire year.


Retails Savings

It is the benefits of the system—in particular the cost savings—that draw the greatest attention.  For instance, one expense many store owners and renters may not be aware of is the actual use and drainage fees to deliver, use, and drain water from their locations. It is estimated that this can cost anywhere from US$.80 to as much as $2.00 per gallon and these costs are usually passed on to the store owners and renters in the form of fees, rental surcharges, or through higher taxes.

On top of these charges is the actual cost for water.  Although charges vary depending on several factors, a retail facility may expect to pay hundreds to several thousands of dollars annually for water.   By replacing conventional urinals with waterless systems, there is the potential for both of these charges to be reduced significantly.

anza waterless urinal

And the installation of waterless urinals is usually considerably less than that of a conventional urinal.  "Since waterless urinals do not need to be connected to water,” says Klaus Reichardt, CEO and Founder of Waterless Co., “none of the plumbing necessary to deliver water to the urinal are necessary.  “And usually these are the most expensive part of the installation.”

Although many expenses can be reduced with waterless urinals, there are costs to maintain them that building/store owners should be aware of.  “In fact, with some no-water urinals, these charges can be so significant, they can actually eliminate the cost savings a facility was hoping for by going waterless,” says Reichardt.

According to Reichardt, there are a few manufacturers of waterless urinals in the United States today.  Although quite similar in appearance and operation, each one uses a different trap system, which can affect maintenance requirements and operational costs.

Some models last only two to three months.  And the price of replacement traps can vary—from as little as $6 to nearly $50.  Additionally, although waterless urinals are cleaned essentially the same way as conventional units, on some models changing the traps can be a messy—and time consuming—job.

Future Trends

It is expected that many more retailers are going to be operating their facilities with sustainability in mind.  They too will begin implementing Green cleaning systems, installing energy efficient lighting, energy efficient HVAC systems, and evaluating the carpets, floors, and paints they use based on their impact on the environment. 

On the top of the list, when it comes to finding ways to better monitor and reduce water use, will be no-water urinals.  As a result, we can expect new restroom and water conservation technologies introduced with more retail facilities installing waterless urinals. 

For more information on waterless urinals and their many benefits, please contact a Waterless Co representative here.