Urinal Cleaning: How to Get Rid Of Uric Scale and Smell in Toilets

Urinal Cleaning How to Get Rid Of Uric Scale and Urine Smell in Toilet bathroom

Updated on December 21, 2023

Urinal cleaning – it’s not a fun job for anyone. 

Uric scale can quickly build up and create an unpleasant smell that can make even the most seasoned cleaning professional a little nauseous as they walk in the restroom. 

And if that’s how you feel cleaning toilets with that smell of urine, imagine how your customers, employees or members of the public feel using them. 

A clean toilet or urinal is essential in providing an inviting atmosphere and good impression to your customers as they enter the bathroom. 

If you continuously see uric scale in the toilets and urinals of your bathrooms, and your toilet smells of urine despite cleaning, we know some quick tips to help you get rid of it.

Read on to learn how to remove uric scale and the bad odors that come with it – and keep them away for good. 

What is Uric Scale or Uric Acid?

Before we learn how to get rid of the uric scale, it’s best to first understand where it comes from. 

Uric acid also goes by the names of uric build up or uric scale. It is that hard scale build up that you often see in urinal basins. Uric scale is created when urine and flush water combine. 

Over time, urine that builds up inside of urinals and underneath the toilet bowl can form uric acid crystals which for many washrooms is the cause of bad smells.

dirty white urinal, traces of limescale, close-up

What is the Problem with Uric Scale?

Cleaners consider urine odors and stains to be some of the toughest problems to eliminate in washrooms. Urinal cleaning is often the least favorite job of bathroom cleaners because the uric acid crystals within urine are tough to eliminate. They are the main source of issues such as urine stains on toilet bowl and bad odors in bathrooms. 

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Once uric acid crystals seep into the floor and tile grout or pipes become blocked and the uric scale builds up. Removing the unpleasant sight and smells that come with urine stains can initially seem impossible (though luckily it’s not).

Stains are caused by urine that settles into porous surfaces and creates unsightly, off-colored blemishes. Some stains can be so severe that the tile grout actually becomes burned and permanently damaged. Once the uric scale has had time to settle into the floors and grout, it will also cause unpleasant odors that are reactivated each time the surface becomes wet. 

But why is uric scale such a big problem for your business? 

Well, while a clean bathroom is rarely remembered, an unclean one can turn into the talk of the town. Studies show that stains and odors in your bathrooms can prevent customers from returning

Dirty restrooms are cited as the second largest cause could turn patrons away from a store, after bad odor.

Uric Scale Can Be a Problem in Toilets and Urinals

While stains are a common occurrence in men’s rooms due to splashback and urinal usage, it happens in women’s bathrooms too. 

Studies show that the majority of women (88.9%) preferred to squat or hover over public toilet seats.

Tip #1: Reduce Uric Scale in Women’s Washrooms With Toilet Liners and Mats

To make women more comfortable and decrease the chances of messes, you can provide toilet seat liners and toilet mats. 

A barrier between individuals and the seat will increase the chances of sitting instead of squatting and absorbent, non-slip polypropylene toilet mats will catch any spills.

Tip #2: Reduce Uric Scale in Men’s Washrooms With Urinal Screens and Mats

In men’s rooms, urinal screens and mats work together to protect floors from the ill effects of uric scale. Screens will decrease the amount of splashback that ends up on floors and users, and the mats will protect floors from the urine that does escape. In addition to the urinal screens and mats stopping spills before they cause a problem, both products can eliminate the odor caused by uric scale as well.

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How to Dissolve Urine Crystals in Urinals

While screens and mats can be effective in minimizing uric scale, what do you do if there are already urine crystals in the urinals? 

Traditional cleaning products are ineffective when it comes to breaking down urine crystals. This is why many cleaners are left baffled and wondering why the toilet smells of urine despite cleaning. 

Rather than using a traditional cleaner, the best course of action for how to dissolve urine crystals in urinals is to seek the aid of an enzyme-based cleaner that is specifically designed to bind to and break down the uric acid crystals. This type of cleaner will typically also combat the problem of the odor-causing bacteria around the urine crystals.

Before you apply the cleaner, you should soak up as much urine from the urinal as possible with paper towels, if the deposit is fresh.

You can then soak the affected urinal with an enzyme-based cleaner.

Remove any residue from the urinal after letting it soak for 10 minutes. You should then find that the urine odor and stain are removed, and the urine crystals have dissolved.

toilet smells of urine despite cleaning

The Problem of Uric Scale in Your Pipes

Uric scale is not just a problem outside of your toilets or urinals. 

When pipes are not treated properly and become blocked, waste has nowhere to go and causes odor to emanate from fixtures. When debris and/or scale are blocking pipes, urine waste has nowhere to go and causes odor.

Tip #3: Flushing Won’t Get Rid of Bad Odors

Your businesses will end up flushing money down the drain by continuously flushing the toilet to try and get rid of bad smells. This can actually do more harm than good, leading to blockages and damage to pipes due to the build-up of uric salts. 

The good news is that there are solutions that can help prevent uric acid build up in your business’ washroom.

How to Prevent Uric Scale Build Up

Uric acid is problematic and requires smart planning and preventative measures to avoid any of its consequences. 

Tip #4: Use The Right Tools to Prevent Uric Scale

A range of urinal and toilet care solutions including urinal screens, inline sanitizers, and toilet and urinal mats all work together to keep spills off of floors, pipes clear, and odor from occurring. Regularly maintaining these fixtures and products is just as significant as providing them, so be sure to have services scheduled to keep everything in top shape!

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Tip #5: Use Urinal Screens & AutoFlush Systems

Blockages can be a result of debris being flushed down pipes that should not be in urinals, such as gum or pieces of trash, or could be a result of organic buildup. 

Urinal screens will shield drains from unwanted debris, while auto flush systems paired with inline sanitizers will take care of pipes and break down organic matter before it can become pipe-clogging. 

As auto flush systems operate without touch, they also reduce cross-contamination and are a more hygienic option for everyone using the restroom.

Contrary to popular belief, waterless urinals can be more odor-free than their water-using counterparts; however, they can still experience the same problems. Their oil sealants can break down and allow odor to spread instead of shielding against it. 

Models that use Aqua Trap technology and gel sanitizer are more effective at preventing unappealing redolence, as the water sealant does not degrade like an oil-based one. The enzymes in the gel sanitizer diminish organic matter and inhibit buildup from developing, and along with urinal screens blocking out debris, keep pipes clear.

Install EcoClean & Combat Bad Smells in Your Commercial Washrooms

If your business is worried about bad smells caused by uric scale, Citron Hygiene has a range of solutions to help combat the issue and prevent it from happening in the first place.

Our clever solution that is designed to control the growth of hard water and uric scales that can cause bad smells is the EcoClean. Featuring a subtle, fresh scent, this fixture can be installed above any of your toilets and/or urinals and prevents the build-up of bacteria and uric scale.

Find out more about EcoClean and how it can help your business or get in touch with our friendly team to request a quote.

Find out how we can elevate your washroom experience today.

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