Here’s the dirty truth: If a facility’s restrooms smell bad, the public thinks the entire facility is unclean.
86 percent of U.S. adults equate the cleanliness of a restaurant’s restroom with the cleanliness of its kitchen. The survey also revealed that 75 percent of U.S. adults would not return to a restaurant with dirty restrooms. The same holds true for other facilities as well.
Odors are perhaps the greatest restroom offender and one that creates an immediate negative first impression. For this reason, odor must be a top consideration for building service contractors, especially in health care settings, where the cleanliness of the facility correlates to the perception of care, and in restaurants, where it correlates to the cleanliness of the kitchen.
“People think, if they can’t keep the restrooms clean, then what is the rest of the facility like?”
There are two ways to deal with odor, owners can use a masking-type product that pushes fragrance out and changes the molecular structure of an odor to cover it up. Or they can use cleaning products that work biologically by seeking out the protein causing the odor, consuming it and leaving a byproduct of carbon dioxide and water behind.
With the first method, the odor still exists, but you are mitigating the negative reaction to it, with the second, you eliminate the odor at the source.
The best restroom odor control systems use both methods. For example, in a men’s restroom, which at times can have an overpowering smell of urine, a masking agent might be helpful. However, the biological method is also needed to remove urine proteins from grout lines to ensure odors do not linger.
Just trying to mask the smell is not good enough, because people can a lot of times smell through that mask. They can still smell the odor, it just has a little bit of a twist to it, if you will.
There is a small but increasing percentage of the population who are sensitive to any kind of fragrance or odor control. There are some products that offer an odor neutralizer with a very light but pleasant fragrance. While no air freshener could ever be completely hypoallergenic to everyone in the world, we do find this type of scent can be an acceptable alternative where someone has an issue with traditional fragrances and perfumes.
A quality restroom odor control program embodies more than just a fragrance to mask the smell. It includes a consistent cleaning schedule, the right products to tackle odors at the source and a pleasant fragrance to keep the smell down.