Frequently Asked Questions
Why use transparent partitions?
Although partitions have been widely in use in healthcare and food service settings for decades, their use in the “new normal” world is distinct from either of these.
Partitions are proposed to serve these critical functions:
- Intercepting the respiratory droplets that are thought to transmit COVID-19 and other viruses and bacteria;
- Re-enforcing physical distancing requirements, even when users are wearing a mask;
- Allowing for people to eat together, comfortably, when they cannot wear a mask; and
- Reducing reliance on masks, both due to the shortage of these items and user comfort.
However, if staff and/or clients will be unmasked on opposing sides of these partitions, it is essential that the partition has been designed, installed, and maintained such that it effectively prevents the co-mingling of droplets (and aerosols) produced by both parties.
Do I need tools to install?
No. The Smart Spacer® comes with a standard allen wrench and screws (even extra, just in case!) The clamps are hand tighten only.
How tight should the clamps be?
They do not need to be very tight. In fact, it's best to simply hand tighten them.
How long does it take to set up a Smart Spacer®?
On the first installation only: The Smart Spacer® comes with a protective layer common to acrylic panels to give them extra protection when shipping. It takes a moment or two to remove this cover from each side of each panel.
Once the protective layer is removed: In as little as 4-5 minutes for two people working together, and under 10 minutes when setting up alone, it's a quick and sensible process.
Do I have to use all the panels?
Nope! You need to use enough panels to be stable. If you are using the clamps provided, you can have as few as three of the panels on a six panel system, and three to four for an eight panel system. If you loosen the top cap, you can slide a panel out for (e.g., for a couple to be together).
Can I use alcohol to clean the acrylic panels?
It's best to AVOID using alcohol to clean any type of plastic or acrylic product -- including plexiglass. While plexiglass panels are more resilient, they are still a plastic, and therefore, alcohol might cause crazing and cracking, sometimes even severely. This is because alcohol is a good solvent, and as such, has the ability to attack the surface of acrylics and dissolve the polymer chains.
What's the best way to clean the Smart Spacer®?
Use a non-abrasive cleaner with a soft cloth for the acrylic sheets. You may find that cleaning will create static electricity and attract dust. We suggest that you use a cleaner especially for acrylic that reduces static/dust. We recommend the Novus brand of cleaners and polishing products available on Amazon.
What's the best way to DISINFECT the Smart Spacer®?
You should contact your local health department, or the CDC, for guidelines on disinfecting. In addition, we've put together some helpful information, links and steps on the Cleaning and Disinfecting page.
Will the acrylic (aka plexiglass) scratch?
Acrylic sheets are strong especially for their thickness and weight, but they can scratch. The storage system is designed to keep your acrylic sheets in the best condition, with foam sheets provided to put between each piece of acrylic.
Are replacement panels available?
Support and Troubleshooting
What's the best order of setup steps?
- Assemble the bottom cap (the one WITHOUT the decorator holes) and the rod.
- Place the cap on either end of the rod, aligning the slots
- screw the hex screw in with the supplied hex wrench hand tight. (Do not overtighten.)
- Place the cap/rod partial assembly in the center of the table. Place it as close to the center as possible.
- Place the clamps around the table, approximately lining them up with each cap slot (with the L shaped clamp pieces inserted)
- Place a panel into the clamp, and slide into the first slot on the rod. TIght the clamp a bit, but not fully.
- To avoid unnecessary cleaning of fingerprints, use a set of gloves to handle the acrylic panels.
- Place a panel on the opposing side of the table across from the first panel. Tighten the clamp some.
- Place the remainder of the panels.
- Place the top cap on the top of the acrylic panels aligning the slots furthest away from you to the acrylic until the cap pushes down.
- Screw in the top cap with the hex wrench — hand-tighten only (do not overtighten).
What is the easiest way to slide the panels into the slots?
When you place the acrylic sheet into the slot, it’s best to raise it up some, and put the corner into the rod, and then slide it down into the cap.
What's the best way to remove scratches?
For the aluminum parts, you can remove minor scratches by using the rougher side of a Scotch-Brite™ Pad with some common dish soap. Make sure to use the pad in the same direction as the grain (e.g., circular motion for the disks, or straight along the rod).
For the acrylic, Novus has minor and heavier scratch removal products that are quite good. See the Novus brand of cleaners and polishing products available on Amazon.