Here is what cities like Chicago, Baltimore, Phoenix, San Francisco, and many others are doing to replace dilapidated water infrastructure
As the oldest manufacturer of waterless urinals in North America, Klaus Reichardt, CEO and founder of Waterless Co., says he has heard just about every question imaginable about the devices.
Years ago, he says, the questions were more elementary, like:
• How do they work?
• How much water can they save?
• How do you use them?
However, today, building owners know more about waterless urinals and have “far more weighty questions.”
A young couple had recently moved to Colorado and after a few months, decided to have a small party. They invited their co-workers and some of the people they had met so far. The couple did not know most of these people very well. It did not matter. Their goal was to get to know everyone better and become a part of the community.
Not only did the young couple not know their guests very well, the same was true for about everyone at the event. This made for considerable stumbling around as everyone was introducing themselves and attempting to "break the ice."
However, suddenly everything changed – for the better.
One of the male guests went into the bathroom and reported, "I almost ran out of the bathroom because I was so excited to tell everyone about what I just discovered!"
What he had just discovered was a waterless urinal installed in the bathroom.
"I never thought of installing a urinal in a house," says the guest. "For the rest of the evening, everyone was talking about how interesting it was to see a urinal in a home, and the hosts kept bragging about all the great benefits. Maybe not ideal conversation at the dinner table, but….."
One of the benefits the hosts mentioned was that it was a waterless urinal. Because its waterless, the urinal is much less expensive to purchase and install compared to a water-using urinal, simply because there is less plumbing involved.
However, the significant benefit is how much water it saves. While there are no savings estimates for waterless urinals installed in homes, in commercial facilities, they can save about 35,000 gallons of water per year if not more.
In Colorado, reducing water consumption is becoming a high-priority. In most parts of the state, this is the first summer when no drought emergencies have been called - but that can all change next year.
Because of past droughts, many cities in the state are working to educate their citizens on ways to reduce water consumption. For instance, many have "Water Savings Wednesdays." Citizens are encouraged not to water their lawns, or wash their cars, and look for ways they can save water throughout the week.
Installing a waterless urinal takes this a step further. Installing a waterless urinal is one way to save water throughout the year.
For more information on the savings possible with waterless urinals, contact a Waterless Co Specialist.
Stop whatever you are doing right now and look at the plumbing under the sink in your home or office. If you can see a pipe, you will notice that it is in the shape of a J or a U.
OK, so you’ve likely seen this before, but have you ever wondered why it’s shaped that way?
The “U Bend,” as it was initially called, was developed in 1880. Whether it is in the shape of a U, a J, or even a P does not matter. These kinds of pipes are known as traps in the plumbing industry, and they are designed to prevent sewer gases from entering a bathroom or restroom.
The way they work is quite simple. Because of their design, they retain a small amount of water after each use of the fixture. This water creates a seal that blocks out sewer gases, preventing them from being released into the restroom. Similar traps are used in almost all plumbing fixtures, including sinks, bathtubs, toilets, showers, and floor drains.
For the most part, this simple little design has worked well for more than a century on all these kinds of fixtures except one: the floor drain. Whereas kitchen and restroom sinks, toilets, and showers are used enough to keep water in the trap, the water in floor drainpipes can and does evaporate from time to time. When this happens, offensive sewer gases can be released into the room.
Historically, this has been a serious problem for many facility managers and cleaning professionals. It often takes some time to realize that these odors are coming from the floor drain. Often a detailed cleaning is performed as a result of these complaints; however, if the real source of the problem is a floor drain, the odors will persist.
When the floor drain is finally identified as the problem, there are two relatively easy ways to address this:
· Pour water down the drain on a set schedule—say once per week.
· Pour a chemical known as “everprime” down the floor drain.
Everprime is biodegradable, inexpensive, and designed to withstand extreme temperatures without evaporating.
Many school districts use it. Custodians pour Everprime down floor drains to keep traps sealed during the summer months. Further, Everprime can last a year or longer without evaporating, essentially eliminating odor problems caused by evaporation from floor drains on an annual basis.
For more information on how to keep restrooms odor free, contact a Waterless Co Specialist
A study released in August 2019, by Bluefield Research, finds that water rates are going up so fast in parts of the country, "questions of affordability" are now being heard.
In other words, some people in the country may not be able to afford water delivered to their homes in coming years.
Here's what they found:
· From 2012 to 2013, water/sewer rates increased, on average, 5.40 percent
· 2013 to 2014, 6.24 percent
· 2014 to 2015, 3.98 percent
· 2016 to 2016, 2.03 percent
· 2016 to 2017, 5.26 percent
· 2017 to 2018, 1.53 percent
· 2018 to 2019, 3.60 percent
However, the researchers pointed out that while most areas of the country are experiencing water rate increases, “the year-to-year rate volatility and varied approaches by utilities is striking," says Erin Bonney Casey, Research Director at Bluefield.
"The volatility is evidenced nationally over the last eight years, with an annual average rate swinging from 6.0 percent higher in 2014 to 1.5 percent higher in 2018. This past year, the most significant changes occurred in El Paso, Texas, where average customer bills increased 33.3 percent; on the other hand, in Riverside California they declined -22 percent.
The study also pointed out that the costs for water varies considerably in the U.S. Memphis, Tennessee had to lowest water rates, approximately $30 per month. However, Seattle, Washington was at the high end where the average water bill here is $226.62.
So, we see that water rate increases can be very volatile. We now know where the least costly and the costliest water rates are in the country.
But, why are consumers in Riverside paying less for water?
The simple answer is that water in Riverside comes from a publicly owned utility the city has owned and operated since 1895.
"There are federal and state regulatory requirements that apply to investor-owned utilities that do not apply to publicly owned utilities," says Terrie Prosper, with the California Public Utilities Commission.
"[Further] publicly owned utilities have access to very-low-cost [electric] power from federally operated dams that the investor-owned utilities do not have access to. Moreover, many publicly owned utilities also have access to low-cost financing that makes their capital investments much less expensive."
In other words, Riverside is blessed with lower operating and borrowing costs, along with fewer costly regulations they must adhere to. When things are going "swimmingly," as they have been recently, they can pass on savings to their consumers.
For more information on how to reduce water consumption, waterless urinals, and to use water more efficiently, contact a Waterless Co Specialist
In commercial men’s restrooms, waterless urinals are a rarity — though they’re becoming more popular. Perhaps that’s one of the reasons why many in the industry seek advice in how to better clean waterless urinals — often times they want to know how to clean them.
As CEO and founder of waterless urinal manufacturer, Waterless Co., Klaus Reichardt fields just about every question there is regarding the waterless urinal. Years ago, he was often asked things like “How do they work?“ and “How much water can they save?” Today, the questions he receives are more complex. Those questions — and Reichardt’s answers to them — are listed below, courtesy of Waterless Co.
To read more on CleanLink.com, click here.
Men learn urinal etiquette rules that are just passed on from generation to generation here are some key urinal etiquette rules to know, at least in North America
Since 1992, a whole new glossary of terms has evolved referencing water conservation and water efficiency. Some of them are the following
You can see one of the first ever public waterless urinals now on display at the Vienna Technical Museum.
Gentlemen, How Flies and Bees can Improve Your Aim
While this typically does not apply to waterless urinals, water-using urinals often have urinal screens placed at the bottom of the urinal. These urinal screens typically there for two purposes:
1. For decades, they contained chemicals to help reduce odors, but many of those chemicals are now banned.
2. They helped prevent larger debris from entering the urinal drain and causing a blockage.
But some military operations found other reasons for installing urinal screens. They began placing urinal screens that had a red dot – or many red dots - at the bottom of the urinal. The main reason for this: it encourages guys to improve their aim.
After all, if sharing a barracks with 20, thirty, or more guys, the urinal area can get pretty messy. Better aim meant the bathrooms stayed cleaner and more hygienic.
However, in the 1960s, the Dutch army took this a step further. The screens were designed with etched flies of different colors worked into the urinal screen pattern. According to Keiboom Van Bedoff, a Dutch maintenance worker, adding the flies helped guys improve their aim much better. This was because they now focused their attention on trying to immobilize the flies (even though they were nothing but plastic).
“They now had the ability to use one’s natural gifts and achieve victory over the foe while standing,” he explained. Guys, he felt, can always beat flies. “That’s why urinating on flies is so satisfying.”
However, this idea of adding insect targets to urinal screens actually goes way back. In the 1890s, some urinal screens in Britain were designed with etches of bees, not flies. This became the favored urinal screen target throughout the U.K.
Why bees and not flies is anybody’s guess. But what we do know today is that these types of screens are rarely used. However, based on the appearance of some men’s restrooms today, it might be time to bring them back.