How to Control Trash Room Odors

dumpster with overflowing trash

According to the EPA, per capita, the average person generates around 4.5 pounds of trash per day. All this garbage has to be stored somewhere before it gets to landfills. Hotels, residential buildings, restaurants, hospitals, retail spaces, and other locations collect their garbage in centralized trash rooms before being hauled away. Their odors collect there, too.

Commercial garbage room odor control can be one of the most challenging jobs in building management. The accumulation of malodors can seep into public areas, causing complaints from visitors and residents and damaging the reputation of a location.

It’s nearly impossible to completely remove smells from decomposing food, disposed of chemicals and liquids, and other odor-causing waste. But with a detailed plan, trash room odor control is possible.

  1. Maintain Clean Trash Rooms and Trash Chutes

Keeping a clean environment and equipment is the first step for effective garbage room odor control — and a best practice for many other reasons. Not only does it limit trash odors (and odor complaints), but it can also:

  • prevent fires
  • limit safety code violations
  • deter pest infestations
  • prevent staff and resident injuries
  • avoid more significant property maintenance issues

Trash chutes can build up smelly residue, grime, and grease over time. Regular treatments with degreasers and power washers should break up odorous materials on the sides.

  1. Control Garbage Odor Emissions With Sprayable Gel

One effective method for reducing garbage odors is to scrub smells from escaping gases. Fresh Wave IAQ, the makers of natural odor eliminators, developed a Spray Gel that coats waste and prevents foul emissions from smelling up an area. 

Spray the non-toxic gel directly onto open garbage dumpsters and waste receptacles, trash compactors, and composting areas. Natural plant oils in the Gel trap and neutralize odor molecules, rendering gasses odorless as they pass through the product and into the air.

It can be applied via a wide-nozzle trigger sprayer or with a fan tip portable sprayer on a backpack.

  1. Use Odor-Eliminating Vaporization Equipment

When odors are concentrated in one area, vaporization can be an effective method for distributing odor eliminating products. In vaporization, liquids are turned into minute particles of dry vapor, and can treat more surface area than other techniques.

Some locations use perfume-filled air fresheners which only mask odors with other smells. Many other businesses have come to rely on products like Fresh Wave IAQ’s line of natural odor eliminators — the only products that safely and effectively neutralize odor molecules without harmful chemicals.

Fresh Wave IAQ has created an innovative program of equipment using Vapor Phase Technology to deliver their natural odor eliminators. The Dry Vapor System (DVS) program includes the stationary DVS65 unit — specifically designed for trash rooms, garbage collection areas, and compactor rooms.

The DVS65 continuously mists Fresh Wave IAQ Air & Surface Liquid and creates an invisible odor-fighting “curtain,” which blocks odors from leaving a protected area.

Dry Vapor Systems products

Avoid Worsening Odors in Warm Weather

Odors get noticeably worse in the hotter summer months, which can increase urgency for trash room odor control.

“Warmer temperatures cause odor-causing bacteria to grow faster, resulting in an increase in the enzyme activity,” says Dr. Laura Haupert, Director of Research and Development at OMI Industries, manufacturer of Fresh Wave IAQ natural odor eliminators.

The combination of heat and humidity could mean more odor complaints. It’s no surprise that the demand for commercial-strength garbage odor control solutions also spikes in the middle months of the year. That’s why it’s important to be prepared with a complete odor control plan.

Case Study: D.C. Apartment Complex Trash Room

Located in Washington D.C.’s popular Penn Quarter, The Lansburgh trash compactor area was producing a high-level of foul odors, which made their way into the residential hallways through the ventilation system. The property management team received many guest and resident complaints. 

Initially, the property management team was going to invest thousands of dollars to reconstruct the ventilation system to prevent the bad odors from coming into the residential section of the building. Instead, Fresh Wave IAQ Spray Gel was added to the top of trash in the compactor area. Odors were immediately and completely neutralized.

Additionally, Fresh Wave IAQ odor eliminating Gel products were placed in the air ventilation systems to prevent odors from entering residential areas. 

The Lansburgh no longer receives odor complaints. More importantly, it allowed the building’s owners to save money, while also implementing a solution that is safe for workers and residents.

Read the full case study >

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