Everyone has the right to privacy, especially when going to the restroom. Imagine “doing your business” without any cover or separation from other’s eyes can be quite awkward; this is where the toilet partitions come in.
Though we may not actively appreciate them as often as we should, toilet partitions play an essential role in keeping the sanctity of restroom areas and, in turn, ourselves. In the past, toilet partition was not widely used until, in the early 1900s, as one American architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, decided to transform the restroom areas by creating more separation and room for privacy.
This transformation is essential to maintain individuals’ privacy, especially for women who are starting to have their own work and are expected to use public restrooms.
Every place that conducts a commercial activity must be equipped with better public restrooms. It’s not just about the matter of hygiene, but also promoting a comfortable place of activity.
Toilet partitions could be made in different types and configurations using suitable and durable materials. In this article, we will break down the different materials, types, and configurations available to provide an excellent restroom environment.
For each type of restroom, the configuration may differ, mainly because of how much traffic the toilet is going to get. Typically, we can have three toilet stalls with 1 or 2 urinals if it is a men’s room or in general, a two standard and one accessible stall. However, some areas can go higher, just like the Chongqing restroom in China, claiming to have the largest public restroom in the world. The four-story bathroom features around 1,000 toilets.
There is four popular and significant type of partition for toilets on the market right now. Below you will find the common types of partition with their advantages and disadvantages.
1- Metal Partition
It is the most preferred option in creating restrooms since it is economically friendly. This is popularly made in powdered-coated steel using the electrostatic process, which gives us the finish of a powder that sticks to the metal.
We can expect day-to-day durability, it is easy to maintain and clean, you can be worry-free from deformations, numerous colors available, and a year’s long lifespan. Indeed, this is the most popular and favorite one.
2- Plastic Laminate Partition
It provides a beautiful appearance and great versatility. The surface of the laminate is stain and impact-resistant. It is also lightweight and easy to maintain.
It has an attractive appearance and also a cost-effective solution. Although one big drawback with this partition is that it is not advisable to install near shower areas of water amusement parks and pool areas.
3- Solid Plastic Partition
It is one option to consider highly. It is also known as HDPE (highly-density polyethylene). It is the most advisable type of partition to use in areas experiencing high traffic of restroom users.
The finish of solid plastic partition prevents any form of vandalism, performs well in high humid areas, and is a sanitary alternative. Given these advantages, it is safe to say that we cannot get it at a low price, but rest assured that it is a long-lasting and very effective one.
4- Stainless Steel Partition
In terms of appeal, this is surely the most elegant. Having its modern look, it is also undeniably the most expensive one. Steel, as we know, is resistant to corrosion, and it is an excellent type of partition in areas with high humidity. However, this is a heavy material to install, which could be a problem. But if you do not mind the price and hassle it brings during installation, then go for this one.
These are just four out of many options you can choose for your toilet partition. In addition, below is the list of unpopular or not commonly used types of partition available.
5- Solid Phenolic Partition
It has a high-density material suitable for full water contact, making it completely water-resistant. The phenolic board’s making undergoes a process called polymerization, which produces a material into a high-pressure, durable yet lightweight material.
6- Glass Partition
It is the most uncommon type of partition to use because of its risk when contacted by great impacts. Although it could be made with some sort of thickness to withstand such effects, it is still not preferable in public restrooms.
7- Wooden Partition
It is the old school approach of making the toilet partition, which we can consider as the first and the oldest type that restroom areas used to install. It has a lot of disadvantages since it is not water-resistant and offers less durability and lifespan than other types of partition.
All of the options mentioned above are among the market’s available partition forms. Moreover, before determining which toilet partition is suitable in your areas, one must first consider factors such as the price, the environment and the traffic intensity.
The pleasant appeal we are aiming depends on the type of partition we will use and the way we maintain the cleanliness of the restroom (just take a look at the Rantau Abang public toilet in Terengganu, Malaysia which is awarded as the winner of the ASEAN Public Toilet Standard 2019-2021 and by the ASEAN tourism forum in 2019). We must make sure that what we install is the appropriate type and style for us.
It is also interesting to think of what will be the future in store for toilet partition and the overall experience we will get inside our respective restroom where it is in our home or in public areas. We can assume that there will be an improvement in the installation of partition, making it less of a hassle in terms of time and energy.
We can probably see a more digital approach as people become a lot dependent on technology. In the future, we might see a smart restroom area where we might be able to see the news or some sort of entertainment while we are inside. Nevertheless, the main purpose of the partition is for our privacy and safety, which should never be defeated by any means of advancement in the near future.
It does not need to be a luxurious experience as long it serves and protects our right to privacy, then that would be more than enough.