Hand dryers have long been victims of all sorts of myths, so let’s finally set the record straight. While they don’t spread bacteria, they do dry hands efficiently and contribute to environmental wellbeing. So, banish those misconceptions and embrace the truth about these convenient, cost-effective and efficient hand dryers! Hand dryers are more than just humble washroom appliances; they offer many benefits. Hand dryers help businesses cut costs, avoid a paper towel avalanche and champion environmental sustainability. Their quick and efficient drying powers leave no soggy hands behind, which is crucial for maintaining good hand hygiene. After all, moist hands are a haven for bacteria and germs to flourish before transferring to other surfaces. Furthermore, hand dryers can also enhance accessibility.
In this blog post, we’ll separate fact from fiction. Here are seven common hand dryer myths you should know:
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Myth 1: Hand Dryers Are Unhygienic
Contrary to popular belief, hand dryers are not the microbial menace some people believe. In reality, hand dryers are extremely hygienic as long as they are used correctly. Several studies show that when they are properly designed and maintained, hand dryers effectively reduce bacterial contamination on hands. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends using hand dryers to hygienically dry hands. While modern hand dryers with high-velocity airflow significantly reduce bacteria on hands compared to paper towels. Hand dryers also eliminate the need for touching potentially contaminated surfaces, reducing the risk of cross-contamination.
Myth 2: Hand Dryers Don’t Dry Hands Effectively
Modern hand dryers have the drying power of a hurricane. They effectively remove moisture and dry hands within an incredibly short time. High-speed hand dryers, such as those equipped with HEPA filters, generate a powerful stream of warm air that evaporates moisture quickly. Studies that compared hand-drying methods found that air dryers effectively remove moisture from hands for the recommended duration. In fact, some hand dryers can dry hands in as little as 12 seconds, providing a fast and efficient drying experience.
Myth 3: Hand dryers are noisy
While older hand dryers may have been so loud the noise permeated right across the building, modern hand dryers have significantly improved noise levels. Many manufacturers now prioritise low-noise operation, making hand dryers suitable for environments where noise needs to be minimised, such as schools or settings that cater to individuals with disabilities or learning needs. For example, some hand dryers feature advanced noise reduction technology that significantly reduces sound levels without compromising drying performance. These quieter hand dryers ensure a pleasant experience for users while maintaining a quieter environment.
Myth 4: Hand Dryers Are Not Energy Efficient
While you may have thought hand dryers are a black hole for electricity, modern hand dryers are increasingly energy-efficient. They offer a more sustainable alternative to paper towels. Rather than devouring energy, advanced hand dryers utilise technologies such as high-velocity airflow, optimised heating elements, and energy-saving sensors to minimise energy consumption. Hand dryers use significantly fewer resources than paper towels, which must be continuously manufactured, transported, and eventually disposed of in landfills.
Myth 5: Hand Dryers Are More Expensive Than Paper Towels
If you always thought hand dryers were just money down the drain, you’ll be pleasantly surprised. While the upfront cost of installing hand dryers may be higher than purchasing paper towels, hand dryers offer long-term cost savings. While the exact cost saving will vary, on average, paper towels are up to 95% more expensive than hand dryers. Paper towels require ongoing replenishment and disposal costs, which can add up over time. Additionally, some hand dryers have adjustable settings that allow facility managers to control energy consumption, further reducing operational costs.
Myth 6: Hand Dryers Cause Skin Irritation And Dryness
There’s a common myth that hand dryers are your skin’s worst enemy, suggesting it causes irritation and dryness. But you don’t need to rush out and stock up on extra moisturiser to use after every time you dry your hands. While prolonged exposure to hot air can leave your skin feeling a little dehydrated, today’s hand dryers are designed to control warmth. This means while they can dry your hands effectively, they won’t turn your hands into the Sahara Desert. However, if you have a pre-existing or sensitive skin condition, you may experience some discomfort from the air movement. But overall, hand dryers are unlikely to cause significant irritation or dryness if used correctly.
Myth 7: Hand Dryers Are Not Suitable For People With Disabilities
The suggestion that hand dryers discriminate against people with disabilities is not true. These magical washroom machines are more inclusive than many people give them credit for. Hand dryer manufacturers recognise the importance of accessibility and ensure these washroom appliances can accommodate people with disabilities or mobility issues. Some hand dryers have lower mounting heights, touchless operation and easily reachable controls. They’re the accessibility superheroes of the washroom.
Every washroom needs a hand-drying solution in the battle against germs. Whether it’s providing trusty paper towels or a powerful hand dryer, the ultimate goal is to prevent the spread of germs. Without proper hand drying, damp hands can become a playground for bacteria ready to hitch a ride and spread to as many surfaces and other hands as possible. Whichever hand-drying solution you choose, by busting these hand-dryer myths, you’ll have all the knowledge you need to select the best drying option for your needs.