Washrooms on Campus: Upgrading University Facilities

Washrooms on Campus: Upgrading University Facilities

Summer is a relatively quiet time on university and college campuses and presents site managers and caretakers with an ideal opportunity to carry out more thorough maintenance and routine upgrades. When approaching the washrooms, durability is likely to be of concern when purchasing fixtures and fittings, though universities can be less prone to vandalism than secondary schools, which gives you a little more room for creative flair and more flamboyant design.

A contemporary, matching look that flows through the campus is becoming increasingly important to higher education facilities and unlike many businesses, there is a multitude of different washroom environments to consider. 

Get Tough On Legionella & Drainage Checks
For more intensive Legionella and drainage checks, the quiet summer downtime provides ample opportunity to carry them out. The condition of your water storage tanks should be inspected and in the case of replacements or works needing to be carried out, the closing of washroom facilities is less likely to be a problem for the site.

Though the summer months may be quiet and washrooms see little use, this means it’s even more important to stay on top of Legionella checks. Periods of low water usage or complete water closure provide the perfect environment for bacterial growth. Before the new term starts in September, it’s a good idea to flush through the water storage tanks and all pipework with fresh water to reduce the risk of Legionella or other harmful bacteria that may have had the opportunity to flourish. Though this work can be carried out by the site manager, there are firms this work can be outsourced too, taking care of Legionella and thorough hygiene checks.

Go Bold on Facility Washrooms
Slick washroom facilities can leave a lasting impression on prospective students and visitors alike. Compared with other education facilities, university washrooms can be at a reduced risk to vandalism and so you can afford to be a little braver with your washroom design. Whether you want to go sophisticated and eco-efficient or venture out into something a little quirky, you can implement a look and feel that works with the university’s approach to learning without having to compromise. Sensor taps and sensor activated flushes are becoming the go-to option for higher education facilities as are high-powered hand dryers. Wash troughs can deliver a certain look and feel to your washrooms and for the eco-conscious amongst you, waterless urinals can also be installed which bring large savings on water usage. School colours can be worked into the design very well using cubicles and integrated plumbing system wall panels, which effectively clad in all the pipework and leave you smart, easy to clean walls, which blend into cubicles seamlessly. Full height cubicles deliver more privacy, offer a more sophisticated look and are certainly worth considering if you are about to carry out any washroom refurbishment.

Drinking Fountains Vs. Water Coolers
Refillable water coolers can be costly and time-consuming to upkeep and an alternative means of supplying the users of your facility with drinking water is by installing drinking fountains. Today, drinking fountains that have the ability to fill bottles are becoming increasingly popular and are ideal in both changing rooms and washrooms alike. Perfect for filling water bottles up prior to heading out to do sports, and also generally staying hydrated, which is a healthy practice to promote. These drinking fountains are also regularly used in main thoroughfares and main entrance lobbies. In place of water coolers, they have the added advantage of never running empty.

Freshening Up The Changing Rooms
Changing rooms see a lot of use over the course of a year. In this damp, humid environment, corrosion is more likely to occur and so an inspection of all metalwork and hardware is good practice. Cubicles can be simply restored with the replacement of hinges, locks, support legs and channel fixings. To simplify the process even further, at Commercial Washrooms we have hardware packs that include the full set of fittings to enable you to restore a cubicle in one fell swoop.

Re-grouting is a chore often undertaken in the summer months and is essential for slick looking and hygienic shower facilities. If the grouting between tiles does not look quite ready for replacement, then deep cleaning using powerful anti mould and disinfectant chemicals can be used and left to soak. Again, with less foot-fall, the temporary closure of changing or shower facilities are less likely to have an impact on day to day operations of the campus.

The Halls Of Residence
In summer, the Halls are often an area of priority when it comes to washroom maintenance and refurbishment. Having harboured an army of students for almost a year, there can often be a lot to get through in time for the new arrivals come September. Deep cleans are a given at this time of year and there are always items and areas that need replacement and refurbing. Unlike the main campus, durability is likely to be of extreme importance in the Halls. As well as high durability, look for baths, showers, taps and toilets that are easy to replace and always opt for standard sizes. This makes replacement and maintenance much easier further down the line. Remember, that though a high traffic environment, the washrooms in the halls of residence are of a domestic nature and so sensor taps, hand dryers and wash troughs are not necessary or required.

Drainage and soil stacks need to be thoroughly cleaned and checked for signs of buildup and blockage. In a tall block, things like soap residue from washing machines, baths and showers can build up in the pipework to the point where water flow is significantly reduced and can even result in wastewater coming up through the toilets and sinks on floors below the blockage. You can outsource the pressure cleaning of soil stacks and drainage to specialist firms on a quarterly, or bi-annual rota.

As always, our team are at the end of the telephone for all your queries and questions and have a wealth of knowledge they’re happy to share with you. So if you need some guidance, or would like to talk over your options, you can give them a call on 01202 650900.

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