Toilet Partitions Codes to Review Before Choosing Bathroom Partitions

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Long before you begin construction, and even before you start buying your materials, you and your team should be familiar with the local and national toilet partitions codes that pertain to your restroom remodel or renovation project. Failure to do so could result in a build and restroom configuration that don’t meet national, state, or local guidelines, which in turn could hold up the entire project, pushing back the completion date by weeks or even months until the project can be finished and up to code.

To ensure that your project stays on track and meets the important legal building requirements, all building plans should be confirmed with local jurisdictions and compared against both local and national toilet partitions codes. When it comes to toilet partitions, here are some codes and standards you’ll want to review to make sure that your restroom passes inspection and is up to the specifications required by the national and local standards.

Basic Restroom Standards

When it comes to designing and outlining your restroom project, it’s important to get the basics right before you start. A major factor that you need to consider is the occupancy of the building in which the restrooms are located. You need to have the proper amount of toilet fixtures to ensure that there’s adequate space for occupants to relieve themselves. The standard rule is that there should be at least one toilet and stall for every 50 occupants. You can easily fit more stalls in your commercial restroom, but you also want to allot enough space for an ADA-compliant toilet stall, which takes up more room than a standard toilet stall that’s up to code.

Toilet Partitions Codes & Standards

The standard, wheelchair-accessible compartment requires all new construction and alterations to feature an out-swinging door, no more than 4 inches from the corner, diagonally from the toilet. You also need to make sure that the centerline of the toilet is 18 inches from the nearest side wall of the partition where horizontal grab bars must be mounted, as well as behind the toilet. This is to ensure that the occupant can easily access the toilet while having the necessary support to get up and exit the stall once they’re finished.

Ensuring that your facility’s restroom is ADA-compliant is crucial. These specific codes and guidelines set forth by the Americans with Disabilities Act must be met in order to complete your restroom project. Providing easy access for occupants with disabilities is required by law, so make sure that you take inventory of your allotted space, as well as the number of toilets per occupant to ensure that you’re meeting the criteria.

ADA-Compliant Toilet Stall Dimensions

Stall Width

  • 60 inches minimum width of stall compartment (inside clear)

Stall Depth

  • 56 inches (inside clear) for wall-mounted toilets
  • 59 inches (inside clear) for floor-mounted toilets

Grab Bar Dimensions

  • At least 36 inches long
  • No more than 6 inches from inside corner
  • Adjacent grab bar no more than 12 inches from back wall
  • All grab bars should be 33-36 inches from the floor

Standard Toilet Stall Dimensions

Standard walk-in compartments, meanwhile, feature a toilet centered on the back wall and an out-swinging door. These are required whenever there are six or more toilets in one room. Horizontal grab bars must be mounted on each side wall or partition, as well as a toilet paper dispenser that’s easily accessible for the occupant.

Stall Width

  • 36 inches minimum and maximum (inside clear)
  • At least 15 inches from toilet to stall wall

Stall Depth

  • 60 inches minimum (inside clear)

Fire Prevention Building Codes for Bathroom Partitions

Those familiar with the International Building Code (IBC) will recall that bathroom partitions are considered interior finishes when they cover 10% or more of the wall or ceiling. Subsequently, the performance requirements for controlling fire growth as it pertains to toilet partitions can be found in Chapter 8 of the IBC under Interior Finishes.

Currently, there are two standards used to measure the fire performance of interior finishes. The first tests the surface burning characteristics of building materials. In this test, the materials are classified by flame spread and smoke development. Check below for the specific standards:

  • Class A has a flame spread index of 0-25, and a smoke development index of 0-450.
  • Class B has a flame spread index of 26-75, and a smoke development index of 0-450.
  • Class C has a flame spread index of 76-200, and a smoke development index of 0-450.

The second standard is the room corner test. The acceptance criteria for this test includes:

  1. During the 40-kW exposure, flames shall not spread to the ceiling.
  2. The flame shall not spread to the outer extremity of the sample on any wall or ceiling.
  3. Flashover, as defined in NFPA 286, shall not occur.
  4. The peak heat release rate throughout the test shall not exceed 800 kW.
  5. The total smoke released throughout the test shall not exceed 1,000 m.

Keeping Up to Code with Your Restroom

These codes were set in place by local and federal lawmakers to ensure that every occupant has the right amount of privacy, space, and accessibility, regardless of any disability or functionality. Adhering to these specific codes and dimensions is of the utmost importance. Otherwise, you can face a slew of fines or a halt on your project. Be sure to review the standards and codes for your location before designing and starting construction on your commercial facility’s restroom.

There are many other codes and standards that you need to review before choosing toilet partitions. To learn more about how Scranton Products brands meet local, state, and national guidelines, contact us today. You can also check out our free eBooks, ADA Guideline for a Compliant Restroom and Restroom Design for Commercial Facilities, so you can prepare yourself for your project and be sure that you’re on the right track with codes and standards.

9 Things to Consider Before Designing Your Commercial Bathroom

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Commercial bathroom design involves a lot of moving parts, all of which need to be considered before implementation if your design is going to be worth building. The most important factors to consider before designing your commercial bathroom include the number of users, durability, water savings, and serviceability. You also need to consider initial and operational costs, Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards, materials, and building codes.

Though it might seem like a lot of balls to juggle, making sure to discuss these nine components will help you ensure that your commercial bathroom design is a winner.

1.    Number of Occupants

The number of people you expect to be using your commercial bathroom will greatly alter its final design. For example, a bathroom at a major sports complex will need to accommodate more occupants to avoid excessive queuing than a commercial bathroom located at a small family doctor’s office.

Understanding the expected amount of demand or use will help you to determine how large to make the restroom, how many commercial bathroom stalls or urinals to include, how many sinks or hand drying fixtures you’ll need, and so on.

commercial bathroom design

2.    Durability

There’s no doubt that building owners want the commercial bathrooms to be durable, but what level of durability is being required? For instance, a wooden bathroom vanity provides some durability. However, wood is highly susceptible to water damage from leaky pipes, scratches, graffiti, and other damage.

Meanwhile, materials such as high-density polyethylene (HDPE) provide exceptional durability. HDPE is resistant to dents, unlike metal, as well as scratches, mildew, graffiti, and more. HDPE also reduces environmental impact and offers improvements to the indoor air quality of the bathroom.

3.    Water Savings

The choice of water-using fixtures is an important one because it will determine both initial and long-term costs for the facility. For example, the average toilet uses 1.6 gallons of water each time it’s flushed. A high-efficiency toilet, on the other hand, uses 1.28 gallons. If a toilet is flushed 10 times each day, the average unit would use 5,840 gallons a year while the high-efficiency unit only used 4,672.

A bathroom with three high-efficiency toilets could save roughly 3,504 gallons of water per year compared to a commercial bathroom with three standard toilets.

4.    Serviceability

Should damage or a major plumbing problem arise, you’ll want to make sure that your commercial bathroom is easily serviced. That way a qualified repair team can quickly fix the problem and get your bathroom up and running again. This may be achieved by adding a service panel on the other side of the wall where workers can reach pipes or wiring.

5.    Initial Costs

Understanding the initial costs of your project will help you to better determine how to design it. How much will it cost to purchase materials? Provide installation? Inspection fees? These initial costs will ultimately help to define the budget for your project, which could dictate your final design. For example, it may be more cost-effective to add more urinals and fewer toilets in the men’s room.

6.    Operational Costs

After you take into account the initial costs of building the bathroom, you should consider the long-term operational costs. This can include the cost to provide lighting and electricity, water, and the cost for maintenance and repairs. One way to keep operational costs down is to use high-quality, durable materials for fixtures and vanities.

7.    Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Accessibility

For your design to meet ADA guidelines, you need to have them in mind when developing your commercial bathroom. This can include many parts of the restroom, including the entrance. For example, a labyrinth-style entrance should have enough room for a wheelchair to pass through with room to spare on either side.

8.    Economic Quality of Fixtures Used

Will your design use the good, better, or best materials available? Good materials are often low in price but may require frequent maintenance or provide a low level of durability. The best materials, on the other hand, typically provide a higher initial cost but require less attention in terms of maintenance and repairs. HDPE, for instance, is extremely durable and long lasting, making it a popular material for commercial bathroom projects.

9.    Local Codes

Before you start designing a commercial bathroom, you want to know what the local codes and regulations are. This will significantly impact what you can and can’t do in terms of design. Failure to consider the local building and occupancy codes could result in denied building applications and potential legal issues in the future.

Learn more about the many HDPE products available for your commercial bathroom design.

How to Remodel a Commercial Bathroom

Remodeling a commercial bathroom is a big job that’s best left to a professional contractor. After all, the new design and materials chosen will significantly impact the efficiency, security, and privacy of the restroom.

A facility that’s been carefully designed not only improves the experience of those using it but also those who operate the facility. Not to mention that a properly remodeled bathroom can help keep initial and reoccurring costs down.

When considering a commercial bathroom remodel, here are some things to keep in mind.

1. Design Your Facility’s Bathroom’s Entrance and Exit Flow

If part of your commercial bathroom remodeling projects includes the entrance, now is a good time to consider how the entrance is affecting traffic flow and queuing.

For example, a bathroom that can be locked from the inside may cause unnecessary queuing.

Here’s how: A locked bathroom may have one person in the stall and two waiting by the door. Meanwhile, an unlocked facility could have one person in the bathroom stall, one washing their hands, and one drying their hands. In the second scenario, queuing is at a minimum and the facility is operating at optimal efficiency.

Many commercial bathrooms implement a labyrinth-style entrance, which gets rid of the door altogether. This style of entrance is preferred for several reasons:

  1. Limits the spread of germs by reducing the number of surfaces patrons come in contact with.
  2. Reduces misuse since the sound of criminal activity is more likely to be detected and there’s no door to serve as a warning that security personnel are entering.
  3. Improves traffic flow, assuming that the width of the walkway is wide enough to allow two lanes of traffic.
  4. Allows management to intervene if occupant fails to respond after an excessive period of usage, something that is more difficult when dealing with a bathroom that’s locked from the inside by the occupant.

For maximum efficiency, you may consider using a separate entrance and exit. This allows traffic to flow in and out without patrons having to squeeze by or accidently bump into one another.

2. Coordinate Bathroom Fixtures

The selection and placement of the many fixtures is an important part of your commercial bathroom remodeling project.

Mirrors, for example, will need to be placed strategically to provide maximum privacy and security. A properly placed mirror can give occupants a direct sight line to the back of the restroom. A mirror that’s place thoughtlessly, on the other hand, could accidently give a clear view from outside the bathroom to an area that was intended to be private, like the urinals in a men’s restroom.

While placement is certainly worth considering, material is also an important factor when selecting the right fixtures for your bathroom. A well-made bathroom vanity that’s resistant to damage could help to lower your operational costs and protect your remodeling investment.

HDPE material is a high-grade plastic that’s resistant to scratches, dents, corrosion, mildew, and graffiti. This durable material is easy to clean and can be used for vanities and bathroom partitions.

Plus, HDPE can be designed in a wide variety of colors and textures to best match the décor of your facility.

Contact Scranton Products to learn more HDPE and their collection of cost-effective commercial bathroom fixtures.

How to Care for Your Commercial Bathroom Vanities

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Mahogany toliet partition lr

Keeping your commercial bathroom vanities clean is an important part of owning a building. It’s important not just for health sanitation reasons, but also because the chemicals used to clean bathrooms can saturate the surface of the vanities and cause severe damage.

Proper care is vital if you want your vanities to last for years to come, so it’s important for your cleaning staff to understand the correct care and cleaning procedures when it comes to your commercial bathroom vanities.

Note that not all bathroom vanities are made of the same material. Different materials may have different restrictions when it comes to cleaning. The recommendations below are deemed safe for most vanity surface types.

Basic Commercial Bathroom Vanity Care

Commercial bathrooms receive a significant amount of use compared to private or domestic bathrooms. So while many people may clean their bathrooms at home maybe once a week, it’s recommended that commercial bathrooms be cleaned daily to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria. Daily cleaning will also help to prevent the vanities from being damaged by water, soap, or chemicals.

A clean bathroom can also help to prevent physical damage to your vanities that can be caused by a trip or fall.

Recommended Cleaning Products

  • Bon Ami
  • Dishwashing soaps such as Dawn, Ivory, or Joy
  • Fantastik®
  • Formula 409®
  • Mr. Clean
  • Scrubbing Bubbles®Bathroom Cleaner
  • Windex®

In addition to using cleaners that are safe on the vanities’ surface, it’s also important that your team uses sponges or soft cloths when cleaning. Heavy-duty scouring pads or other abrasive cleaning agents could damage or dull the surface of the vanities.

DO NOT USE

  • Ajax
  • Ammonia or cleaners containing ammonia
  • Bleach
  • Comet
  • Scratch pads
  • Soft Scrub
  • Steel wool/brushes

In addition to avoiding these possibly harmful cleaning products, it’s important that other precautions be taken in order to care for your commercial bathroom vanities. For example, don’t drop sharp or heavy objects onto the vanities, and make sure that the faucets are in good working order. A leaky faucet can do a lot of damage if left unfixed. However, not all vanities require the same amount of care.

For example, commercial vanities made from high-density polyethylene (HDPE) are remarkably durable and relatively easy to maintain. They resist dents, scratches, corrosion, mildew, and even graffiti, which makes them a perfect fit in any commercial restroom. On top of that, HDPE products are safe for the environment and your building.

HDPE Bathroom Vanities

HDPE bathroom vanities provide building managers with a worry-free solution that saves both time and money. Their high resistance to damage means these vanities need little to no maintenance, and their non-absorbent plastic build makes them easy to clean without worry of damaging the finish.

These vanities can be purchased in any number of styles, with plenty of colors and textures to choose from. If you’re a facility manager looking for a cost-effective approach to commercial bathroom vanities, click here to find out where to buy Scranton Products.

Are Bathroom Hand Dryers Unsanitary?

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hand dryers

Many facilities install hand dryers in their bathrooms instead of paper towels to reduce the waste created by paper towels and the germs that paper towels could leave behind when drying your hands. Recently, however, studies have shown hand dryers causing more harm than good in terms of bacteria and germs.

If you’re designing a bathroom or a related facility and you’re unsure of whether you should install hand dryers, learn more about the pros and cons of this option.

Facts About Hand Dryers

British researchers from the University of Leeds conducted a study to determine the effectiveness of warm-air dryers, high-powered “jet-air” dryers, and paper towels. Jet-air dryers were found to be the worst option, with bacteria levels in the air around them 4.5 times higher than with warm-air dryers and 27 times higher than with paper towel dispensers. Even five minutes after use, 48% of the bacteria was collected around the hand dryers, and they were still detected 15 minutes after use.

Mark Wilcox, team leader of the University of Leeds study, said, “These findings are important for understanding the ways in which bacteria spread, with the potential to transmit illness and disease.”

Keith Redway of the University of Westminster in London also conducted several studies to determine the most germ-free method of hand drying, yielding the same results: Jet-air dryers increase the amount of bacteria on your hands after washing them.

Hand Dryer Advantages and Disadvantages

While hand dryers allow people to dry their hands without having to create waste from paper towels, the air that comes from inside the jet dryers isn’t sterile. A filter beneath the dryer is supposed to be cleaned weekly, but many places don’t clean it properly. This leads to layers of bacteria becoming caked on the dryer’s vents. The air then travels through these bacteria, contributing to a dirtier bathroom, with machines sending germs more than 6 feet away.

Another disadvantage of hand dryers is that people don’t always use them correctly. People don’t always keep their hands beneath the dryer for long enough to dry their hands. Many walk away with damp hands, which act like a magnet for germs and bacteria.

Paper Towel Advantages and Disadvantages

One advantage that paper towels offer over electric hand dryers in terms of bacteria removal is that the action of rubbing your hands with paper towels can help with removing the bacteria. In addition, using a paper towel to open the handle of the bathroom door can help you from coming in contact with an area that contains a lot of bacteria.

On the other hand, paper towels are discarded into bins, so the bacteria that was wiped onto them is now collected into one area. The bacteria then multiply as people continue to toss their used towels into the bin.

It’s important to keep these facts in mind when determining what type of product you’re going to use in your facility.

If you’re looking for bathroom partitions, vanities, or lockers, click here to find out where to buy Scranton Products.

Using Products with Purpose in the Dallas School System Redesign

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Next Gen Partitions - White Scranton Products provides bathroom partitions, lockers, showers and dressing compartments and vanities for facilities looking for visually appealing, durable, long-lasting, sustainable products. They provide the best products in the industry, utilizing High Density Polyethylene plastic, or HDPE, for high performance that offers improvements to a facility’s air quality and reduces environmental impact. When the Dallas school system was in need of a redesign in 2008, the citizens approved a $1.35 billion bond program to reshape the school district through 61 different products. Dated facilities were replaced with state of the art environments including elementary, middle and high schools across the city.

Scranton Products Used in Redesign

Among the many products selected specifically to meet the needs of the Dallas school system was the broad-based installation of bathroom partitions from Scranton Products, (This sentence doesn’t make any sense which according to were among the products preferred by Dallas ISD’s maintenance department. Available in an assortment of colors and styles, Dallas’ partition of choice was Hiny Hiders Paisley Color with a EX Texture, a black bespectacled with white dots with a ridged texture. In addition to their appealing look and feel, the Scranton Products partitions also met numerous other criteria cited by the city for its new school bathrooms. This included absorbing all the forms of punishment that thousands of students, teachers and parents could deliver every day for the foreseeable future. These benefits include the ability to never rust or delaminate as well as resist dents, scratches, graffiti, corrosion, mildew and moisture. They are also fully power-washable and can be firmly installed in three configurations; floor mounted overhead-braced, ceiling-hung or floor-to-ceiling.

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The Preferred Choice

Scranton Products were a top choice for the redesign of Dallas’ school system. Architect Jason Mellard commented on the choice to selected Scranton Products. “Durability was certainly an important consideration when we planned this project. It really must be able to stand up to just about anything, while constantly dealing with relentless wear and tear. That’s why the Scranton Products’ partitions were chosen by the district for installation throughout the school system. They are exceptionally tough and with the proper support are virtually impossible to rip from the floors. Plus, they just look nice. Their black finish with textured dots provided an attractive complement to our overall design and color scheme.”

 

Products for a Sustainable Environment

Scranton Products are created with HDPE plastic, which allows facilities to support a healthier environment. These products reduce environmental impact and offer improvements to the indoor air quality of your facility. They’re also Greenguard Gold certified, a certification that offers strict criteria and considers safety factors that account for sensitive people such as children and the elderly. If you’re interested in reducing your footprint and creating a healthy environment with clean air, click here to find out where to buy Scranton Products.

The Best Methods for Removing Graffiti from Lockers and Bathroom Walls

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In schools or public facilities, bathroom walls and locker rooms are at a high risk of graffiti. While it’s difficult to catch vandalism in the act, one of the best things that a facility manager can do is develop an effective plan for removing the graffiti as quickly as possible once it shows up. But what’s the best method for removing graffiti from lockers and bathroom walls?

Scranton Products is here to give you some quick and easy tips to return your facilities to their pristine state after vandalism. Read on to learn the best methods for removing graffiti from lockers and bathroom walls.

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Going Green in the Bathroom: 6 Ways to Keep Your Facility Restrooms Sustainable

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An environmentally friendly restroom provides major benefits for facility managers as well as patrons. With a sustainable restroom, maintenance costs become much cheaper, materials are more sanitary, and you work to support a healthier environment by reducing industrial waste.

In this day and age, an environmentally friendly approach can go a long way in a facility’s restroom, and we’re here to show you how. Read on as Scranton Products teaches you six ways to keep your facility restrooms sustainable.

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3 Reasons Why Plastic Partitions Are Superior

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Business owners and facility managers may face serious consequences when they fail to choose the best material available for bathroom partitions, especially when they only consider the privacy aspect of the partitions.

Scranton Products wants your restrooms to have the best partitions available so you can avoid costly maintenance fees due to rust, mold, scratches, or any other problems that you may encounter. Continue reading to learn three reasons why plastic partitions are superior to the leading competition. Read more

Where’s the Restroom? How to Set Up Temporary Bathroom Facilities When Your Building Is Under Construction

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When your facility is under construction, one of the first things that you need to think about is setting up temporary restrooms for you and your employees to use. While obviously not the same quality as a working indoor restroom, if you set up your temporary facilities in the proper manner, you can avoid as much inconvenience as possible.

If you’re facility is planning to undergo construction, you need to be prepared to set up your temporary facilities properly. Continue reading for some tips from Scranton Products on how to set up temporary facilities when your building is under construction. Read more