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Helvex Waterless Urinals: Increasing Water Efficiency while Saving Money, Maintenance, and Energy (Video)

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Green Builder Matt Hoots was fortunate to engage in a great and informative conversation focused on waterless urinals with Stefana Naicu, and Gerardo Roa of Helvex, a leading Americas manufacturer of water saving bathroom fixtures and fittings for both residential and commercial buildings.  


Helvex offers a full line of high efficiency, patented technologies, all of which are water-saving, including:

  • Electronic faucets
  • Residential faucets
  • Bathroom accessories
  • Showering products
  • Vitreous china
  • Kitchen faucets


Sustainability is a top commitment, and the company has won awards for technology and innovation. Not surprisingly, touchless products have been rapidly growing in demand, and this is a significant company focus, in addition to water savings. 


In this interview, Stefana and Gerardo introduce Helvex, highlight the benefits of the company's waterless urinals, and dispel old ideas people may have about waterless technology.  They also answer Matt’s questions about cleaning and maintenance, and where Helvex products are sold.  



What is a Waterless Urinal?
 

While commercial property managers and building professionals largely understand the concept of waterless urinals, this product may be less familiar to the average bathroom occupant.  As the name suggests, waterless urinals help reduce water consumption, as they literally use 0 water.  Waterless urinals are made of porcelain or vitreous china, and they direct the flow of urine through a seal or seal systems which might be made up of liquid seals, cartridges, and/or flexible synthetic valves to direct the flow of liquid waste through the drain while also blocking any odors and preventing odors, waste, or sewer gases from escaping back into occupied space.  
 

Reduced water usage results in financial and energy savings for building owners and occupants, in addition to providing environmental, community, and security benefits which include the preservation of reliable water supplies today and into the future.  One waterless urinal can save approximately 40,000 gallons of water annually (pre water-saving technology improvements, the average urinal used approximately 3 gallons per flush, where current lower-flow technologies require about 1 gallon of water per flush).  Additional savings result from avoiding the need to install and maintain additional plumbing, as well as maintainenance and repair for plumbing and working parts from flush systems.  An additional benefit is that waterless urinals simplify cleaning and maintenance, both due to the ease of care and the reduced calls for clogged drains due to significantly reduced liquid volume.  Key to waterless urinal success seems to be awareness of proper cleaning procedures and training for maintenance personnel.  



Helvex Waterless Urinals


 

Stefana and Gerardo do a great job of reviewing some past perceptions and challenges to waterless urinal adoption.  Top of mind might be that many people think waterless urinals cause odor, particularly in the past.  It’s now understood that proper maintenance and cleaning will prevent odors.  One temptation might be to over-clean urinals to prevent smells, but too much flushing and chemical improvisation can actually lead to seal degradation.  Another concern was the cost of consumables in the past.  Helvex waterless urinals do not require consumables.  Also, as this technology evolved, costs decreased; but this may also have been a fear more than a reality, unless again maintenance procedures were not understood properly.  A final concern might regard splashing, but the Helvex team is confident in the company’s design and technologies.  

 

Helvex waterless benefits include:

  • A triple seal system to ensure no odors or back pressure, with vertical, inclined, and hydraulic seals
  • Build up is prevented through a sustainable cleaning product
  • Helvex cartridges are made with recycled materials 
  • The cartridges also require minimum, monthly maintenance and can be sued for three years without replacing
  • Splashing is avoided due to effective, innovative designs
  • Touch-free hygienic operation
  • Anti-bacterial coating 
  • No consumables are needed outside cleaning (No refillable gels or sealing liquids are needed on a regular basis)

 

Daily maintenance includes washing with soap and water and using a long-handled brush. As with any other bathroom element in a commercial bathroom, it’s recommended to clean porcelain 1 to 2 times daily, to prevent staining.  Monthly, the cartridge must be disassembled and cleaned.  Helvex offers a lifetime warranty for defects, 65 years for vitreous china, and a 3-year warranty for cartridges.  
 

What are your questions for the Helvex team?  Have you selected, installed or maintained a Helvex waterless urinal?  Let’s continue the discussion!

 

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