One of the curious things that some people have wondered about when it comes to public restrooms is the practice of putting ice in the urinals. This is not necessarily a widespread practice, but some public facilities do this with great regularity and there are actually some very valid reasons for doing so.
The Skinny on Urinals
Let's face it: bathrooms, and urinals in particular, are considered to be some of the most unsightly, unsanitary places to be. They tend to be a hotbed of germs and bacteria. Because of this, many public places try to take whatever steps they can to combat this problem through innovative cleansing practices and odor control methods.
Most restaurants and clubs put ice into the urinals to help keep the smell away. By having a cool, slowly melting water supply flow through the drain, the ‘sewage’ smell that comes from most urinals is kept at bay.
Bacteria can only survive --- and spread --- under warm temperatures. By keeping the urinal cold by using ice, it helps stop the spread of bacteria and the related odor.
People like to use a restroom facility that is clean with a pleasant odor. Some establishments place ice in the urinals as a way to let their customers know they value cleanliness and a pleasant restroom environment.
Some facilities put ice in the urinals to minimize the number of times the customer must flush. This saves on water, thereby saving the establishment money.