March 27, 2023
The Most Effective Way To Get Rid of Washroom Odours
A common problem for facilities is washroom odour. A bad smell coming from the washrooms can give the wrong impression. People assume that there is a lack of hygiene and that the building in question is not being properly cleaned and maintained.
However, this is not always the case. In fact, you might often be left wondering, why do the toilets still smell even after they’ve been cleaned? Well, urine luck! Because this blog will answer that question for you.
We’ll be looking into the reasons why odours occur in the first place, how to treat them, and how to prevent them coming back!
There are a number of reasons why bad odours can occur in the washroom. The most common culprit is, you guessed it, the urinals!
A common response to washroom odour is to mask the smell with a fragrance. However, the odour needs to be dealt with at its root cause to truly eliminate it.
Urine is a waste product and contains by-products filtered out by the kidneys, such as hormones, proteins, carbohydrates, fatty acids, and salts. When urine is left on a surface, given enough time, bacteria start to build. These live off the urea protein and carbohydrates in left over uric acid as a food source, and produce hydrogen sulphide and ammonia, which causes the smell.
To eradicate the smell, you must treat the problem at its source – the uric acid.
If left untreated, uric salts begin to build which crystalise and become hardened over time, causing urinals to develop a blockage, especially where a water saving device has been added to the system.
Often mistaken for limescale, people’s first response is to try to remove the uric crystals with an acid based cleaner or descaler, which only makes the situation worse. This is because an acid-based cleaner calcifies the crystals, so they become impossible to remove, resulting in the entire water pipes being replaced!
To clear the uric crystals, an alkaline detergent, such as Purus Multipurpose cleaner 10 is required. To use this, the flushing system must first be turned off, then between 250ml and 1000ml of the detergent, in concentrated form, should be poured directly into the urinal trap. This should be left to soak overnight with the flushing system left off. In the morning, the flushing system can be switched back on so that the urinals can be rinsed with a couple of litres of water. Repeat these steps with 4-5 treatments to effectively remove all crystals.
Once the crystals have completely dissolved, treatment using the alkaline cleaner, Purus Multipurpose cleaner 10, may cease and daily cleaner, Purus Toilet Cleaner 20, can be implemented as a preventative from uric crystals developing.
Pre-emptively placing down urinal pads and using a deodoriser will help to prevent smell inside the urinal. However, this might sound surprising, but the smell of urine can often come from other surfaces besides urinals and toilets.
This is because when a toilet or urinal is flushed, a mist containing droplets of urine and bacteria is dispelled, which settles on surrounding surfaces, sinking into the grout and porcelain.
To prevent odour, walls and surfaces in the washrooms should be wiped down regularly with a disinfectant and left for the specified dwell time to effectively kill bacteria.
Another easy spot to miss in the washroom is the base of the toilet. This can become host to bacteria and mould over time, so don’t forget this area when cleaning!
Urine also gets on the washroom floor. It can cling to the grout where the bacteria will multiply. If not treated, the uric salts left over from urine will cause irreparable damage.
So, we recommend placing a mat down to prevent urine from soaking into the grout, protecting the floor and trapping the odour.
The Dreaded Drains
Another cause of odour in the washrooms is the drains. If they are left to dry out, sewerage gases will begin to emanate from them. This is very off-putting to visitors.
Using a disinfectant and allowing it to go down the drains, whether applied directly, or from squeezing out the detergent from a mop, will help to prevent drains from drying out and releasing odorous gases.
Of course, mop heads also need to be replaced and properly cleaned and disinfected regularly.
Ventilation Is Vital
And finally, odours will begin to manifest if a washroom is not properly ventilated.
If there is any moisture in the atmosphere, it will promote the growth of bacteria, mould and fungi, which produce odour.
This can coat the ceilings in you washrooms, so it is good practice to disinfect it once or twice a year.
Poor ventilation can occur as a result of improperly maintained air vents and fans.
Keeping these clear and unobstructed will help to properly ventilate the washroom and prevent odours.
In summary, the most common culprit for washroom odour is the urinals with odour produced from bacteria that feed off uric acid. Rather than masking the odour, the problem needs to be dealt with at its source to prevent it from recurring.
Using an alkaline detergent, such as Purus Multipurpose cleaner 10 will effectively treat and remove uric crystals that arise from uric acid. Following that up with daily alkaline cleaner, like Purus Toilet Cleaner 20, will prevent uric acids from re-building.
Don’t neglect other areas of the washroom where odours can still occur. Apply a disinfectant on all washroom surfaces for the recommended dwell time to effectively destroy bacteria that feed off uric salts. Ensure that floors are well protected with mats, bins are changed, equipment is regularly cleaned, and ventilation is maintained. All of these methods will aid in the prevention of dreaded washroom odours.
Because a clean and pleasant-smelling washroom, promotes health and safety, instils visitors with confidence and helps present an excellent image for your facility