Selecting the Right Hand Dryers for Your School

    Every school system today is looking for ways to cut operational costs and save money, while at the same time implementing more environmentally sustainable facilities. Replacing paper towels in school restrooms with energy efficient and rapid-dry hand dryers can reduce the cost of materials, maintenance and waste by as much as 95 percent, not to mention reducing your school’s carbon footprint. However, when it comes to today’s high-tech hand dryers one size does not fit all. The correct hand-dryer choice can vary not only between buildings but also between areas within the same building. Consider these important considerations when selecting the right hand dryers for your schools:

    Facility requirements
    Traffic flow in a restroom is a key consideration. Are you installing hand dryers in a smaller elementary school or a large high school? Traffic is a big determinant when selecting the correct model for maximum lifetime use and the best drying experience.

    Sound concerns
    Some rapid-dry hand dryers offer speed controls which can minimize sound levels. Is a restroom near a school library or auditorium where sounds need to be kept to a minimum? Or are the hand dryers for a locker room near a gym where sound is less of a concern?

    ADA compliance
    Consider how many users of a restroom may require ADA compliant fixtures. Some of today’s hand dryers are surface mounted ADA compliant, eliminating the need for costly recessed instillation kits.

    Sanitary factors
    For the best sanitary conditions, consider automatic, hands-free hand dryers made with germ-resistant antimicrobial technology.

    Energy usage
    Consider selecting a hand dryer with on-off heating controls. Modern hand dryers use up to 88 percent less energy than traditional hand dryers while drying hands in seconds. Some models will help a school meet LEED certification.

    Long life
    There are many cover options. Cast aluminum is an excellent alternative to cast iron or steel as it’s vandal resistant and offers similar durability.

    Whether you’re retrofitting an existing school or building a new one, work with a partner that offers a broad selection of hand dryers to ensure you secure the best solution for the unique needs of your facility.

    Dan Storto is president for Berkeley, Illinois based World Dryer, a global manufacturer of energy efficient, rapid-dry hand dryers. He can be reached at

    As seen in School Planning & Management, April 2013 issue.