This is part four of a manufacturer roundtable addressing some of the top questions facility cleaning executives have about hand dryers.

Sam Bernard
Global Category Director
Dyson Professional




William Gagnon
Vice President of
Marketing & Sales
Excel Dryer, Inc.




Dan Storto
World Dryer





What is the average life cycle of hand dryers?

Bernard: The average life cycle of a hand dryer can vary between manufacturers, but there are high-speed hand dryers that use brushless digital motors that offer a 5 year warranty, and are known to last well beyond that period. Hand dryers which use conventional carbon-brush motors may have a higher failure rate because the carbon brushes within the motor can wear out over time.

Gagnon: A singular, high-speed, energy-efficient, American-made hand dryer is estimated to provide at least ten years of service, based on an average of 500 uses per week. As with most hand dryers, this type of dryer comes with a five-year warranty.

Storto: Hand dryers are extremely durable and reliable. We have seen our hand dryers last 30 years in facilities.

What maintenance is required for hand dryers?

Bernard: Depending on the user traffic in the washroom, the surfaces of the hand dryer should be wiped clean at least twice per day. Some filter maintenance may be required in the highest traffic washrooms, but this would be infrequently. Hand dryer maintenance is minimal compared to paper towel maintenance, and fits easily into the standard washroom cleaning schedule.

Gagnon: Beyond a recommended annual cleaning, our high-speed, energy-efficient hand dryers require virtually no maintenance. This is in stark contrast to paper towels, which can mean several thousands of dollars a year in restocking and cleaning costs.

Storto: Hand dryers have minimal maintenance requirements.  Routine inspection is recommended once every 12 months for light to medium duty restroom traffic.  Hand dryers incorporating air filtration (either coarse particulate or HEPA filters) should have filters inspected or replaced at this same frequency. Inspection every 6 months is recommended for hand dryers in restrooms with heavy traffic.

How can facility executives control splash and drips around hand dryers?

Bernard: Keeping hand dryers close to the sinks can help to control drips, while there are integrated washing and drying devices – that allow the user to dry hands at the sink – which eliminate the issue entirely. Regular washroom cleaning is also an important part of the picture.

Gagnon: We offer Anti-Microbial Wall Guards, made specifically to fit underneath our dryers. The guards protect your walls from water droplets that can be blown off of wet hands by a high-speed hand dryer’s powerful air stream. In partnership with a manufacturer of high-end commercial products, we’ve also recently launched an integrated sink system that combines the soap dispenser, faucet and our patented hand dryer together on the sink deck. This hand hygiene system directs droplets into the basin during hand drying, one of the system’s numerous benefits to end users.

Storto: Faster dry times help avoid any significant water dripping. Some hands-in style dryers also incorporate a water collection reservoir to prevent any pooling of water on the floor.

Is there a formula to determine how many hand dryers are necessary for any particular restroom? And how should placement be determined?

Bernard: Some manufacturers have dedicated specification teams, which can assist both the washroom design team and the facility team in determining the optimum layout and flow, as well as the number of dryers. Placement is determined by the number of sinks, estimated usage and other variables. We typically recommend one hand dryer for every two sinks.

Gagnon: One dryer for every two washbasins is sufficient for most applications. If restroom traffic is unusually heavy, we suggest one dryer per washbasin in small installations, and two dryers for every three washbasins in larger installations. When a 54" wash fountain is used, we suggest four to five dryers.
Our experts work directly with business owners, facility managers, architects and design professionals to help make optimal installation determinations for each particular restroom environment.

Storto: If your facility’s restroom experiences light to moderate traffic, it is ideal to have one hand dryer for every two sink basins. However, if you experience high restroom traffic, one hand dryer for each sink basin is recommended.

Have there been any innovations in hand dryers in recent years?

Bernard: Recent innovations have included the introduction of integrated tap hand dryers, which enable the user to wash and dry their hands at the sink, and a significant reduction in noise with the latest high-speed machines. Greater ADA compliance has been another development. Many professionals may be unaware of these solutions, so it’s important to be open to new technology solutions.

Gagnon: Yes, many. We revolutionized the industry with our original, patented, high-speed, energy-efficient hand dryer that created the high-speed hand dryer category, and we have never stopped exploring what we can do to make our products even better. We quickly discovered that customization, the potential for options, was key.
For facilities that prioritize sustainability and eco-friendliness, we developed our no-heat technology. For seamless ADA compliance and ultimate cost effectiveness, we launched a thinner profile model. And for every restroom environment, we outfitted all our high-efficiency hand dryers with adjustable speed, sound and heat settings, an externally visible service LED for streamlining maintenance and multi-voltage options for easier installation. Our most recent innovation, in partnership with a globally renowned design firm, is an integrated sink system that combines soap dispenser, faucet, and our signature hand dryer technology together on the sink deck. It creates the ultimate user experience and can be customized to fit any restroom design. 
Our passion for innovation, customization and sustainability continues to drive us. We encourage you to check in again soon; we’re happy to share what’s next!

Storto: We continue to innovate with respect to both the efficiency and design of our hand dryers. Dryers are using much less energy and offer much faster dry times than they did just a few years ago. Other innovations, such as ADA compliance, HEPA filtration and antimicrobial technology are improving the experience for end users and the bottom line for facility managers.

previous page of this article:
What To Consider Before Purchasing Hand Dryers