How to keep a public bathroom clean while reducing cleaning costs
Who among us has never had an unpleasant experience in a public bathroom due to a problem with the cleanliness of the facilities? The truth is that many of us have experienced situations that, although we might laugh about them after they have happened with a friend or relative, we could describe them as surreal and, at the very least, unpleasant at the time of experiencing them.
If I think back to some of those moments, without indulging in the trivial temptation to be scatological, I remember queuing for the longest time in the world to go to the only toilet in a 30 km radius. Once inside (inside is a figure of speech, as the door was broken, had no latch and remained wide open), it was as if I had the canals of Venice under my knees, unable to see the white of the toilet due to the dirt accumulated there and with no paper to sit on or wipe myself with. Or another of those moments of glory where you just want to crawl into a hole and hide, when in a Thai restaurant, unsuccessfully trying out my resistance to spicy food, I had to rush to the toilet to wash off the sweat that was pouring into my eyes. It was then, once inside, that it was like a blindfolded trust exercise (blinded by the sweat that flooded my face and eyes, with no possibility of removing it as my hands were covered in chilli) as I tried to find some paper in one of the bathroom’s dispensers. Finally, thanks to a tissue provided by a kind gentleman (before him, many other people had come in, without the slightest offer of help), my vision was restored and I realised that it was only natural that I hadn’t found any paper, since there was none left in the dispensers. I also noticed that I might as well be in the toilet of an Egyptian restaurant rather than a Thai one, as my legs looked like those of a mummy, rolled up in the large amount of paper that covered the floor and overflowed from the bins. Fortunately, there was also a soap dispenser and hand dryer (incidentally, both from Mediclinics), which I could use to clean and wash my hands properly afterwards.
The events I have just described are only two anecdotal examples that serve to illustrate the problems of maintenance and cleanliness in some public bathrooms. And as with any problem, it is always easy to give opinions and look for possible culprits, which in these cases could be the owners of the business or the company in charge of its maintenance and cleaning.
But if we pay attention to the popular Spanish saying “it is not the person who cleans the most who is the cleanest, but the person who dirties the least” and we actively listen to some of our customers and cleaning and maintenance companies who deal with this, our opinion changes immediately, as they tell us about the enormous cleaning costs they have to bear to be able to offer the best services.
Whatever the case may be, at Mediclinics, as expert manufacturers of equipment for public bathrooms and in order to be able to help you, we would like to offer you a few small tips so that you can keep a public bathroom clean and reduce your cleaning costs.
These tips and recommendations can be organised into three small groups.
1. Recommendations for equipment to be installed in a public toilet
By installing water + soap + hand dryer (All-in-One) in the same washbasin, we will make it easier for users to move around when carrying out their personal hygiene and hand hygiene process. As there is less movement, we prevent them from dirtying a larger area and from spilling a larger amount of water on the floor, along with the risk that the floor may become covered with water.
With fewer items and less space to be cleaned in the bathroom, we reduce the amount of time it takes to clean it.
b) Hand Dryers vs. Paper Towels
As we have seen in one of the two anecdotes I mentioned above, I am sure that more than one of you have experienced complaints from users and customers due to the large amount of paper that has been thrown on the floor. To avoid this troublesome problem of uncleanliness and a negative image for the premises or the company, we suggest installing automatic hand dryers instead of paper towel dispensers wherever possible. In addition to eliminating complaints from users and making it easier for them to dry their hands as quickly and efficiently as possible, this will make the floor much cleaner when it comes to maintenance and cleaning operations.
2. Recommendations for the materials of equipment to be installed in a public bathroom
c) Stainless steel
For hand dryers, soap dispensers, paper towel or toilet paper dispensers, hair dryers, sanitary ware, baby changing stations, grab bars, bathroom accessories and any other bathroom equipment, we recommend that they are made of AISI 304 stainless steel. AISI 304 stainless steel is much cleaner, more hygienic, corrosion resistant and has greater durability. That is not to say that it does not require maintenance and cleaning like other materials. But this will undoubtedly be considerably reduced, and we will be able to cut our cleaning time and costs significantly.
In this short video we give you some small tips for cleaning stainless steel.
3. Recommendations concerning the specifications and technical characteristics of some of the equipment to be installed in a public bathroom
d) Hand dryers with a water collection tank or a kit for direct connection to the waste water outlet.
In addition to opting for hand dryers instead of paper towel dispensers, unless you choose the All-in-One solution, we recommend, where possible, installing hand dryers that have a water collection system together with the water tank or a waste water outlet connection system. This means that they can be connected directly to the main waste water pipe in the bathroom, thus eliminating all the waste water from hand drying. This will result in a much cleaner floor that is free of puddles.
e) BIOCOTE anti-bacterial additive
A public toilet is a unique space, as it is characterised by a high level of moisture. To avoid all the hygiene and cleaning problems and difficulties that this can cause, such as the appearance of mould, damp and fungi, we recommend installing bathroom equipment and accessories that have an anti-bacterial additive. Mediclinics uses the Biocote® antimicrobial additive, which is based on silver ion technology and is directly embedded within the plastic itself, facilitating cleaning and reducing the growth of microbes, which cause odours and stains. In our case, you can find it in our Dualflow Plus hand dryer and in our Babymedi changing station.
Before I finish this post, I don’t want to forget to mention quality. This is an aspect that we consider key when it comes to being able to reduce the short, medium and long term maintenance and cleaning costs of a public toilet. In this sense, it is worth mentioning that Mediclinics, as a manufacturer of hand dryers and other bathroom accessories, has the seal and recognition of the most prestigious and leading quality certificates, both nationally and internationally. We have implemented our own complete Quality Management System, certified according to the ISO 9001 standard, and all our products and processes undergo rigorous quality controls, from manufacturing to delivery to the customer. But don’t worry, we’ll talk about that in more detail in an upcoming post on our blog.
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