Product Review

Beneficial Bacteria Reduce Urinal Water Use

The Ecoblue Cube is a two-inch-square (50-mm-square) block intended to sit on the drain of a standard urinal. It slowly releases bacteria, which multiply and form a biofilm that lines the bowl, trap, and pipes. The bacteria metabolize uric acid, the culprit behind urine odor and uric scale. By reducing or eliminating this odor, the bacteria also eliminate the need to flush after every use. Depending on how the urinal operates and drains, flushing may be necessary just once a day, during regular cleaning.

Lewis Kitts, director of buildings and grounds for the public school in Jamestown, Rhode Island, began using the Ecoblue Cube with eleven 1.6-gpf urinals in March 2006. Kitts’ staff altered the existing manual flush lever so that maintenance personnel can use a simple device to flush, but occupants cannot. Staff flush the urinals twice a day, and clean them daily, as they did prior to using Ecoblue, Kitts said. Using the product, the urinals are “easy to clean and smell good, performance is good, and water use is way down,” said Kitts, whose water bills indicated a 24,000-gallon (91,000-l) savings during the nine months since he started using the Cubes. In addition to saving water, using the Cubes is significantly cheaper than replacing standard urinals with ultra-low-flush or waterless models, “not to mention that you can go back to using water anytime you need to,” said Kitts.

Published January 1, 2008