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    • I have watched the takeover in public bathrooms of hot air hand dryers, Dyson Blades, Extreme blowers replacing traditional paper towels over the last decade or two. In the present global pandemic this really becomes a more significant issue for all of us.

      The argument always seems to be that electric dryers of one type or another, are cleaner, more efficient, effective, safer and oh yes, cheaper too. Yet my personal feeling about electric dryers is that they are mostly for "show" and as I casually watch their non-use in many men's rooms I strongly suspect I am not alone. Pants are still utilized by a significant percentage of males in public rest rooms. And the dryers have shifted from low velocity warm air to cooler, higher and higher velocity air from electric turbines, not fan blades.

      I also think it is difficult to actually use a Dyson Blade without touching one's wrist or sleeve on the small outer opening and I think they spray a mist everywhere in the room. I know other people have difficulty with contaminating the wrist area because I see it!

      But despite suspicions, and the apparent suspicions of my fellow men, electric dryers still seem to be winning due to their constant repetition of how hygenic they are - despite the obvious fact that they blow water droplets and mist all over the place, into the surrounding air, and on one's sleeves and jacket fronts.

      I DO KNOW what works in surgery - a thorough, careful 3 minutes or more scrubbing, with surgical soap, warm water and a nail scrub with brushes, followed by careful drying with sterile towels that are then dropped carefully on a non-sterile surface. Some surgeons dip their hands in a basin of alcohol before drying with the sterile towels.

      The paper towels in a rest room are not sterile, certainly, but I suspect they are pretty clean, and don't bare significant human pathogens when they are dispensed from within a metal dispenser. I would be interested in seeing reports on paper towels actual bacterial/viral loads. The way paper towels are manufactured probably is pretty harsh for viruses.

      Hallelujah!! I am not alone in my fears about electric hand dryers!! - read this article from Wired.

      I am interested in hearing from both males, and especially from females, and their experiences regarding paper towels versus electric hand dryers.

      At the very least I would prefer restrooms offer at least paper and electric options, but my preference would be banning electric dryers, entirely. And yes, I have seen the bins full of paper towels and all that, but at least those paper towels piles are not inhaled..... Dealing with paper rubbish is pretty easy, it can be incinerated.

      Electric dryers are nice for warming and drying ski gloves though, so there's that - and maybe nail polish in the distaff rest room

    • We have a Dyson dryer in one of our library branches and like all things Dyson, it feels like more hype than results. Several years ago I was vacationing near Jackson Hole, Wyoming and came across one of those turbo tornado 🌪 vortex speed wall dryers and thought, “Wow! I no longer have to dry my hands on my pants AFTER using a wall dryer.” The one pictured in your article share, by contrast, was woefully inadequate at drying your hands in one or even two presses of the start button. The Dyson felt like I was performing hand calisthenics across a stupid light that appears to suggest that they’ve been super sanitized. Fascinating conversation starter as always, @Pathfinder. Look forward to comments and discussion from others.

    • The funny thing is I think I REALLY cannot be the only person thinking this way - and to find that the Wired author, and you @StephenL , tend to concur, is just so validating. And finding another pants dryer - we all know our pants are cleaner than new paper towels, right??😳

      I never liked the aerosol mist the dryers spray about, but never really thought they could kill me. Now, however, I'm not so certain.

      I had to share it - along with just a taste of dark humor, and a wee bit of facts.

    • towels or my trousers for sure. When it comes to public toilets I just assume other patrons are riddeled with disease and unsound hygene habits.

    • I think the popularity of hot air dryers also from the current "go green" movement around the world where using paper towels is considered bad for the environment.

      I usually avoid air dryers. I've been led to believe that the hot air that is blown may not necessarily be that clean? Regardless, I always find my hands to still be a little damp no matter how long I dry them, so I just use paper towels instead. I don't waste them mind you, I use just enough to get my hands dry.

      If paper towels aren't available I actually just dry my hands off by shaking them off in the sink and wiping them on my shirt or pants 😂

    • Though I cannot find them now, there have been studies done that I seem to recall showed pretty conconclusively that paper towels are much more sanitary than air dryers. There was even an old Myth Busters episode on this exact topic:

      The air dryer blows whatever is on your hands all over the place!

    • Typical cheap choice-Electric hand driers create "impression" you care about your customers. When I travel I learn which places have cleanest restrooms and good supply of paper hand towels. Always tip rest room attendants , tho harder to do today as we frequently don't carry cash. Was fascinated to see much cashless pay on smart phone apps when in Africa. Surprised I don't need an APP to use the electric hand driers. Progress:>(