Guide to Selecting Hand Dryers For Universities.

‘Universities are huge, complex estates with lots of different considerations’

Best hand dryers by University location

Student bar – Needs to be robust and not too expensive due to misuse.
Recommendation = Machflow, Turboforce, Turboforce Junior, Viper. Bulletdri

Library – Needs to be quiet and hopefully high traffic!
Recommendation = Dryflow Elite, Mitsubishi SMART, Dryflow Classic Plus mark II

Main entrances – Need to be capable of handling large traffic volumes, ultra low energy and super quick.
Recommendation = Mitsubishi SMART, Dyson V, Machflow PLUS Brushless. Bulletdri PLUS

Near Lecture and Concert Halls – Needs to quiet and handle frequent, sudden traffic.
Recommendation = Mitsubishi SMART, Machflow (reduced noise setting)

low traffic teaching and administration areas – not too loud, lower cost units are satisfactory.
Recommendation = Machflow , Turboforce Junior, Ecoforce, Slimforce

University buildings are combination of old and new


A student bar, for example, will likely need a student friendly heavy-duty dryer, probably nothing too expensive as it may well get a hilarious quip scrawled across it. Noise will be far less of an issue than if it was near lecture halls, or libraries where the sound level will be a primary concern. Other areas will vary from having hundreds of uses a day needing a dryer with a higher quality motor and longer lifespan to small back-water offices and teaching buildings that get just a few uses a day, where even the lowest cost dryers will give adequate performance and last for a very long time.

Standardising hand dryers across campus

Understandably, Estate and Facilities Managers want to standardise their hand dryer models as much as possible to make life easy for their maintenance team, however, the reality is often different as the stock of dryers across the campus varies depending on when the buildings were last refurbished. Often different contractors and architects were involved and standardisation of equipment is an afterthought. The FM teams are left to deal with maintaining a huge array of different models.

Estate Managers often ask – ‘How do we standardize hand dryer models and keep costs reasonable?’ 

Some universities are specifying £600-800 dryers across their campus, when a much lower cost, faster dryer will last a decade in low traffic areas!

Free site surveys

Typically, when we conduct a free site survey at a university, there is no record of which models are installed where, this makes maintenance a bit of a headache! If a fault is logged, it will involve a trip across the site to ascertain the model of the faulty unit, then a trip back to the office to call a supplier for a spare part or replacement. All too often this golden opportunity to upgrade to a more suitable model is missed. While we certainly don’t agree with throwing away equipment if it can be salvaged, there is often a significant cost and environmental benefit to doing so, particularly as we take back all old machines and carefully refurbish or strip down and ensure zero to landfill.

Useful information for FM teams

A site survey will provide a factual assessment of the energy use and condition of current hand dryers. This enables Estate’s professionals and Finance Teams to consider the cost-benefit and achievable energy savings. Our findings rarely recommend every model is changed, we often find expensive dryers have been installed in admin areas where the use is low, therefore the payback on an even more efficient model doesn’t warrant the investment or the disposal. On the contrary, we often find very energy-hungry, old-fashioned dryers in busy areas where making a change will have a clear benefit.

\We provide the information and recommendations free, you make the decision if nothing else it will give you a good overview of the state of your equipment and helps your FM team.

The Problem…

We have highlighted that there is a need to standardise but also that there are some areas of universities where an expensive hand dryer is justified and others where it simply doesn’t make sense.

The Solution 

The Machflow PLUS and Standard Edition!

  1. No need to mess around with ordering spare parts and fixing machines. We take care of everything
  2. Deal with faults in seconds
  3. Standardise the fitting and style but use long-life brushless versions in high traffic locations
  4. Adjustable speed and sound to adjust to different locations
  5. Highly energy-efficient
  6. Manufactured in Europe
  7. Zero landfill 

The Machflow plug-in system is a dream for FM teams, once installed, any faults can be dealt with in seconds without touching any electrics, simply release and plug in the new dryer, then await collection of the faulty dryer by our dedicated repair team.

The standard Machflow is available at a very reasonable price and will suit 90% of university locations, without breaking the bank, while the Machflow PLUS with long-life brushless motor (1.8 – 2 million uses) will give years of service in even the highest 10% traffic locations and will still be affordable. It has an adjustable motor speed which can dramatically reduce the sound where it’s needed, while still delivering a great performance.

European made spares

They are European made and highly reliable so a couple of spare units on a site with 200-300 dryers will be more than adequate. Alternatively, if a high-traffic location had an issue, a unit from elsewhere could easily be moved.

HEPA filters are supplied as standard.

We look to support your dryer for as long as possible, which we expect to be decades. All dryers have a cashback value at the end of life as we strip them down and pass any reusable parts through stringent quality control to rebuild new units. The remaining parts are dealt with absolute care and are sent to the most environmentally considered recycling location.


Our other big recommendation for standardising hand dryers in a university is the Mitsubishi SMART. We have worked with Cambridge, Oxford, Bath, Newcastle, and countless other Universities to supply and install Mitsubishi SMARTS.

Quite simply, this is the most reliable machine on the market, it has a fantastic ability to dry quickly with minimum sound travel. It’s also highly energy-efficient, generating substantial energy savings

“Building managers and end-users feedback has been positive with other potential areas for energy savings being suggested for further investigation.”

Adam Fjaerem – Building Energy Manager, University of Cambridge

If you would like a more general guide to the best hand dryers currently available the link will take you to a comprehensive set of comparisons and individual product reviews. Alternatively for the most comprehensive range of recommended products, please visit our hand dryers for schools and universities section for prices and detailed product information

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Article Name
Which hand dryers are best for universities?
Helping universities and colleges standardise hand dryers, washrooms and costs with our free site surveys.
Publisher Name
Andy Cameron

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