Good hand hygiene starts in the washroom, so ensuring that it is both inviting and accessible is key to encouraging people to use it. From a purchasing point of view, equipment should not only be easy to use, but it should also be able to stand up to the test of time, to make your investments go that little bit further.
When it comes to designing or refurbishing a washroom, careful consideration should be given to the end user, particularly when selecting equipment and facilities. Trudi Osborne, Marketing Manager at Airdri, shares her top tips on smart washroom investments.
The all-important first impression
The washroom is often the first facility a guest uses when visiting a company’s premises, so ensuring that it gives the right impression is vital. An unpleasant odour or bulky equipment can leave a negative impression on the overall business.
First and foremost, we need to ensure that the washroom is clean, hygienic and welcoming. There is nothing more uninviting than an unpleasant odour, caused by bacteria, in the washroom. Not only does it suggest the facility isn’t clean, it also points to bad washroom management. We have recently added the Airdri Air Purifier to our portfolio to address concerns around the spread of bacteria in the washroom. The compact Air Purifying unit attacks odours at their source by killing both airborne and surface bacteria and viruses throughout the entire washroom, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year ensuring that the washroom always smells fresh and clean. Alternative antibacterial solutions such as HEPA filters or antibacterial coatings, only clean the area immediately surrounding the dryer.
As well as maintaining a clean and sanitary environment, consideration should be given to the overall aesthetic of the room. Keep surfaces streamlined and clutter-free to keep maintenance to a minimum. Also consider the space available. If it is limited, slim, wall mounted products that do not protrude can keep lower-wall and floor space free. Not only does this give the illusion of more space, it also makes the washroom more accessible to those with mobility requirements. Manoeuvering around bulky equipment can be especially problematic for wheelchair users and those using walking aids. Therefore, selecting ADA compliant products with a slim profile, such as the Airdri Quazar or the Quantum – can remove the risk of colliding with large, obtrusive equipment.
Built to last
Durability is fundamental when investing in equipment for high traffic areas. You need a highly reliable product that will last, as well as deliver an effective service. After all, longevity is a significant consideration when making a purchasing decision. Not only does a durable hand dryer keep running costs to a minimum, it’s also a sustainable solution reducing the number of dryers sent to landfill.
Over the past four decades, we have been committed to improving the durability of our machines. Eliminating problems relating to the wear and tear of motor brushes, by using the latest motor technology, means that, on average, Airdri hand dryers have a lifespan of around 6,000 hours – six times longer than that of other similar, fast dry models. When placed on lifecycle testing, Airdri’s latest model – the Quantum jet dryer – lasted for over 10,000 hours. With most other popular jet dryer units only lasting for approximately 1,000 hours, the Airdri Quantum represents a very significant saving in both running costs and environmental impact.
Keep the noise down
A range of social issues must be considered when purchasing hand dryers, including the environmental impact of noise. The sound of a hand dryer when in use in an enclosed tiled environment, can be disturbing. It can put immense pressure on the eardrums and cause significant discomfort, particularly for hearing aid wearers and dementia sufferers who are sensitive to loud noises.
With over 45 years’ experience in hand dryer design and manufacture, we understand that high-speed, noisy dryers can often leave certain people feeling intimidated, discouraging them from using the washroom facilities. That is why we have created some of the quietest, most effective hand dryers on the market. We have worked tirelessly over the years to lead the way and shape industry standards around sound level reduction. Our Quartz hand dryer was the very first hand dryer ever to receive the UK Noise Abatement Society’s Quiet Mark and today we remain as committed as ever to sound level reduction in our product development.
When it comes to procurement, sustainability should be at the heart of any decision. Look for products that minimise the environmental impact, and take into account the lifecycle, especially if it will end up in landfill. Investing in a hand dryer that will go the distance, as well as keep energy running costs to a minimum, is key. Go for a hand dryer that consumes very little power – under 1,000 watts – which is the standard required in order to qualify for the coveted GreenSpec status. Two of our dryers that have achieved this accreditation are the Airdri Quazar and the Airdri Quantum. The Quantum is the lowest energy consumption unit in the world. Going ‘green’ makes business sense as investing in such a product not only significantly reduces running costs which benefits you as a buyer, but it also reflects your wider social responsibility.
Regardless of the washroom setting, whether that be a hospital, school, shopping centre or commercial business, investing in inclusive products, that accommodate the unique requirements of every end user, is essential. By creating an inviting and accessible environment, you are playing your part in promoting healthy hand hygiene and fighting the battle against the spread of bacteria.