hand dryers

Hand Dryers vs Paper Towels: Which Hand Drying Method Should You Have?

VWB Blog 11 months ago 1

Do you hate wasting paper towels or putting the restroom out of paper towels? Hand dryers are a great alternative to paper towels for drying your hands.

But which hand-drying method should you go for? There are hand dryers vs paper towels, and they could be the solution to the ongoing paper towel problem at home or work.

Hand dryers, or electric hand dryers, can improve sanitation and reduce cleaning costs long-term. But before we get into that, let’s discuss hand dryers vs paper towels, why you should use one, and the differences.


Hand dryers have become the go-to option when it comes to energy efficiency. Hand dryers involve electricity but have become highly efficient with their low wattage.

Paper towels take up more space and produce much more waste. But the advantage of paper towels is their low start-up cost and price of replacement.

Thus, with the proper maintenance, hand dryers can be a more cost-effective option in the long term. Hand dryers offer the desired hygiene while being more convenient. It also requires less effort than paper towels.

On the other side, paper towels are known to be more absorbent. For more info about paper towel dispensers, visit their website.


When it comes to a comparison between hand dryers and paper towels on cost, hand dryers are usually the cheaper option. On average, if setting up paper towels for an establishment’s main hand drying option, you must change out the supply. It results spending money repeatedly.

Hand dryers are a one-time setup and cost. Although electricity is required, this is usually a lot less than the cost of buying and replacing paper towels.

This makes the hand dryers the better option when it comes to price. Yet, it is essential to remember that while hand dryers are cheaper in the long run, paper towels are more effective and do a better job of getting hands dry.

Environmental Impact

Paper towels use a lot of trees, water, and energy during production. Electric hand dryers use electricity. It contains materials that can impact the environment when discarded.

Electric hand dryers emit carbon dioxide. It contributes to global warming, but their environmental footprint is lower than paper towels.

Paper towels also create more waste and need more frequent changing than hand dryers. At the same time, hand dryers may use more energy for a single dry.

Over time they can use less energy. But, not all hand dryers use eco-friendly motors. That means their electricity use can still harm the environment.

Hand dryers are also preferable because the lack of contact eliminates the need for water and detergent to wash cloth towels. It further reduces their environmental impact.


When deciding between hand dryers and paper towels for hand drying, maintenance should be a priority. Hand dryers are often preferred due to their lessened labor intensity as they need minimal upkeep. It dispels dust or dirt with a damp cloth.

In contrast, paper towels can create significant messes and must be monitored and regularly replaced. Paper towels also require purchase every few months. For these reasons, hand dryers prove to be the more maintenance-friendly choice.


Hand dryers are the obvious choice for versatility as they are cost-effective, energy-efficient, and available in many shapes, sizes, levels of power, and noise output. Paper towels can provide better comfort and hygiene but come in a different range of forms or sizes than hand dryers.

Hand dryers also offer the convenience of self-operating and having virtually zero waste, ensuring users don’t have to rely on someone constantly having to restock the paper towels.

Hand Hygiene

Hand dryers are more efficient, cost less, and are more hygienic than paper towels which can spread germs and bacteria when reused. However, hand dryers are noisier and take much longer to dry hands.

On the other hand, paper towels are much quicker and quieter but more expensive over time and are not as hygienic. Hand dryer is an effective way to dry hands and provide an eco-friendly option.

They reduce paper waste and the amount of detergent and water used in laundering paper towels. However, paper towels are the most effective in removing all bacteria from the hands.

They also require no direct skin contact with a machine, and paper towels allow the user to dry their hands conveniently. Hand dryers can be noisy and spread bacteria, and they sometimes are not as effective for people with skin conditions and disabilities.

What to Examine When Evaluating Different Hand-Drying Options

When evaluating different hand-drying options, several factors should be taken into consideration. Cost is the most obvious comparison, as paper towels involve regular purchase and disposal costs.

Thus, hand dryers are more expensive upfront but result in zero operating costs. Depending on the space and layout, hand dryers may be more convenient for users as they usually don’t need a trash can and usually take up less space than paper towel dispenser.

Yet, some people may prefer the quick convenience of paper towels, as hand dryers often increase public restroom time in comparison. Additionally, paper towels are generally better for reducing the spreading of germs, as dryers are known to blow air onto recently-used surfaces, increasing the possibility of contamination.

Though most people are aware of the environmental benefits of hand dryers, depending on the type of paper towels used, they may or may not be a more sustainable option. Considering these factors, a combination of hand dryers and paper towels may be the best balance for most business restroom facilities.

Choose Between Paper Towels and Hand Dryers

The debate between hand dryers and paper towels is still ongoing. The decision comes down to individual preference. Hand dryers are inexpensive, efficient, and can improve hygiene, while paper towels offer more options for customization.

Whichever you decide, remember to choose one that offers the most comfort and hygiene to your customers. Before installing it, consult a professional for an even more informed opinion.

For more tips and tricks on improving your workplace, check out the rest of our blog!

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