Dispelling the Top Three Hand Dryer Myths

Since we revolutionized the industry in 2001 with our patented technology for XLERATOR, the original, high-speed, energy-efficient hand dryer, we have been a leader in our field, achieving many more firsts. So, you could say we know a thing or two about hand dryers, which is why it enrages us when we see so much misinformation out in the market. Here, we take a few minutes to dispel the top three hand dryer myths by sharing with you the research-based facts that prove them wrong.

Myth #1: Hand Dryers Spread Germs

XLERATOR® Hand Dryers provide a more hygienic hand drying experience and environment compared to restrooms using paper towels. As a touchless hand hygiene solution, they eliminate the multiple unnecessary touch points that come with using paper towels, thereby reducing the risk of germ transfer. That’s why both the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention list warm air dryers as an effective means of drying hands as part of proper hand hygiene protocols.

An XLERATOR equipped with an optional HEPA Filtration System offers even greater protection against impurities. New viral filtration efficiency testing conducted by LMS Technologies found that XLERATOR® and XLERATORsync® Hand Dryers with HEPA Filtration Systems remove 99.999 percent of viruses from the airstream, something paper towels definitely can’t do. And in 2020, renowned researchers at the University of Arizona concluded that there is “no data to support any human health claims relative to hand dryers versus paper towel use.”

We consider this myth, busted!

Myth #2: Hand Dryers Are Loud

There’s no disputing that hand dryers are louder than using paper towels. The XLERATOR Hand Dryer dries hands completely in eight seconds*, but that high-velocity airflow creates higher decibel levels. We heard you, so our new adjustable speed and sound feature brings the decibel levels on the XLERATOR® and XLERATOReco® Hand Dryers to a 65–75dB range and the ThinAir Hand Dryer® to a 69–73dB range, which is about the same as an air conditioner, a dishwasher and other common sounds you hear every day.  

Another myth bites the dust!

Excel Dryer Tested to PCR GuidelinesMyth #3: Hand Dryers Aren’t Energy Efficient

Many people are surprised to learn that because paper towels generate a lot of carbon emissions and waste, hand dryers are a significantly more sustainable, “greener” option. But not all hand dryers are the same; look for Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) certification (we were the first hand dryer manufacturer to publish verified, third party EPDs).

High-speed hand dryers that use room-temperature air, like the XLERATOReco® Hand Dryer, are the most energy-efficient and produce the least amount of carbon dioxide emissions. In addition, our high-speed, energy-efficient hand dryers qualify for the most LEED v4 credits of any hand dryer on the market.

Here comes the science: we had a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) Study conducted by Quantis, an international LCA research firm, which determined that when compared to traditional electric hand dryers and even 100% recycled paper towels, the XLERATOR Hand Dryer reduces the Climate Changing Score of hand drying by 50%–75%.

And with that, another myth goes up in smoke!

Count on Us for Facts Backed by Research

We are committed to transparency, which means we go to great lengths to back up any claims we make about our products. If you have questions about these top three hand dryer myths or any others, reach out to us for answers you can trust.

*Dry time and energy use testing performed by SGS International on standard XLERATOR/XLERATOReco Hand Dryers with 0.8″ nozzle/standard Thin Air Hand Dryer to 0.25g or less of residual moisture, pursuant to the UL Environment Global Product Category Rules (PCR) for Hand Dryers.