After my last post, which described my experiences with waterless urinals, the totally ridiculously priced replaceable cartridges and then with my rather atrocious interaction with Terry Janssen, the CEO of EcoTech, a company that manufactures a “SUPPOSEDLY” lifetime cartridge that never needs to be replaced, but in fact just turns out to be a big fat lie, I was pretty much fed up with my Sloan Waterless urinal. In truth, my wife and kids were begging me to remove the thing because it either never worked or stank to high heaven 95% of the time. I had lost all hope that my green home, would have to put in a water using urinal because I could not find any place that sold cartridges for less than $42 each. Now to understand my predicament, let me give you a bit of background on me, the house and why the waterless urinal is so important to me.
I am a general contractor who specializes in deep green homes. My company has built many of the greenest homes in California and my own home has scored higher on the Green Point Rated system (the predominant green home rating system in California), than any other home in the state, ever. The home serves as my company’s model home and also a testing bed for everything that is green that I can think to do in a home. The waterless urinal was something that was not normally put into a house but I thought it would be a great proof of principle for what people can do to save water and money in their homes, provided of course that they have males living there. It turned out to be the biggest failure in the house, not living up to expectations in monetary savings nor in (lack) of maintenance expectations.
Fortunately for me, Klaus Reichardt, the founder and CEO of Waterless Company and the original inventor of the waterless urinal, was reading blogs one day and came across my blog. Now, most people who read blogs about someone having a bad time with something or other just say, “Oh, that’s too bad, I’ve got to make sure I don’t do that in the future.” Heck, it is what I do. Fortunately for me, Klaus was in a better mode that this. He offered to give me a free urinal and a year’s supply of cartridges and the Blue overlay solution. Just because he doesn’t like to hear about his invention resulting in such grief, even if it was no fault of his own and he had no business to gain from it. Now, this is a great offer and way above the call of duty, but I was not ready to get another waterless urinal just to have the same problems again and pay for the same stupid $40 cartridges every 2-3 months. Luckily, after I ready through the Waterless Company website, I realized that they don’t try to stick it to the users of their urinals by charging a crazy amount for the cartridges. Waterless sells them for only $7. Man, that was good to hear.
So, we have had the urinal installed for two months now and it has worked perfectly, draining quickly and never smelling, but it has required no maintenance at all. More importantly, my wife is happy her house doesn’t smell like urine anymore. Well over 200 people in two different home tours, one for the USGBC and the Sierra Club and the other for a green building class at the local college, have come through and not a single problem with the urinal. So, I guess my hatred of waterless urinals should be adjusted to just urinals made by Sloan and Falcon and anything made by EcoTech. Thank you, Klaus. May your good will come back to you 10 fold.
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