Self cleaning toilets – the future or just another daft idea?
Hydrophobic is a word usually associated with Rabies. It describes the being that has the disease/infection’s symptoms – a fear of water.
It is also being used to describe a coating process that is currently being used in mobile phone technology and stain proof clothing but soon could be coming to a washroom near you in the form of Self Cleaning Toilets.
There are several variants of the technology, the main one being a two coat process – a base coat applied to give the right adhesive qualities so that ensures that the topcoat sticks to the surface and repels water. Once the product is applied it will not allow anything with water in it to stick to the surface.
Think on that – nothing would stick to a toilet or sink surface. No more toothpaste marks, watermarks or worse. Thousands of man-hours could be saved every day allowing staff to focus on more profitable parts of any business.
Too Good to be True?
But is this too good to be true and what is the downside? Well, first of all, the systems I have looked at leave a dull matt finish which may not suit many businesses. I am sure there will be a gloss version somewhere; I have just yet to find it. There is also the issue of labour. Do we want to reduce the hours of staff who are at the lower end of the pay scale and possibly struggling financially as it is?
The second question is, and this may sound silly, will toilet or washroom cleaners remove the coating if they have to be used? Do you have to have a chemical-free zone? And in the domestic situation, will the product survive shampoo, hair dye and other products that are the opposite of hydrophobic?
It’s a thought and right now I would be keen to hear your views on this potential development. Would you feel comfortable using a public toilet that hadn’t been cleaned in the traditional way? With the removal of the need to clean the actual toilet, would the surrounding area cleanliness suffer?