When considering the proper odor control program for a given restroom, Chris Meany, chief marketing officer, Clean Control Corp., Warner Robins, Ga., suggests building service contractors address the following concerns:

  • Are you using the proper cleaning products? If not properly cleaned from grout, for instance, urine and other bodily fluids are a breeding ground for odor-causing bacteria. Consider using an organic waste digester to break down and remove these unwanted substances.

  • Is there enough ventilation? Even if you properly clean a restroom, stale air can create offensive odors. Speak with your customer about ventilation options, or at least try to prop open doors while cleaning.

  • Do you have a proper preventative maintenance and deep-cleaning program? The faster you pick up spills or debris, the easier it is to wipe out odors before they have time to form. For heavy traffic restrooms (easily identified by how fast their supplies are used), deep cleaning may be necessary once a week or a month, to address any tough-to-remove build-up.

  • Are you making odors worse? Almost every cleaning agent will have its own fragrance, so contractors must coordinate bowl cleaners, disinfectants and all-purpose cleaners to provide one consistent scent. Clashing fragrances can do more harm than good.

When it comes to adding additional fragrances to a restroom, contractors can choose from cabinet, wicking and drip systems.

Cabinet systems tend to work with battery or electronically operated dispensers that control the time and length of released fragrances. Photoelectric cells allow some cabinet systems to send out fragrances only when lights are on or when someone enters the room.

Cabinets should be out of reach of vandals and in locations that get the most air circulation to help distribute the product. Don’t place dispensers near ventilation systems which will remove, rather than disperse, their fragrances. Photoelectric cell units should be close enough to lights to function properly.

Wicking systems can be in a stand-alone unit or in wall-mounted cabinets. They most often use liquid masking agents that wick up and disperse fragrances. Make sure to place these items in inconspicuous places or out of reach of vandals.

Drip systems often are used in urinals, but also are found in some toilets. They release a preportioned amount of disinfectant or organic waste digester into bowls to constantly reduce organisms that could cause odors.
Contractors also can use urinal screens that contain bacteria-reducing enzymes or added fragrances.

Lynne Knobloch is a business writer based in Mishawaka, Ind.