Occasionally facility managers complain that their waterless urinal systems are causing odor problems in their restrooms. Often, a waterless urinal is actually more odor free than conventional systems because the interior of the unit stays dry. Bacteria, which usually is the cause of restroom odors, needs moisture in order to thrive.

There have been odor problems reported in waterless urinals, and in most cases they are the result of improper maintenance. Although the care and cleaning of a waterless urinal is similar to that of a conventional urinal, there are some differences. Cleaning personnel should not use abrasive cleaners or brushes on the units as the harsh chemicals can damage the unit’s surface or trap cylinder. It is recommended to clean the units with a neutral or all-purpose cleaner or specialized waterless urinal cleaner, allow for dwell time and then wipe clean with a soft cleaning cloth.

If an odor problem appears to be developing cleaning personnel should not ignore it. Usually the problem is an indication that the sealant or cylinder needs replacement or possibly there is an issue with the drainage line.