Are Noisy Hand Dryers Less Efficient?
The noise produced by hand dryers is wasted energy. Anything produced by a machine has a cost in terms of the power being used. The movement of air by a fan creates some noise naturally – the movement of air – but there is also noise being caused by the motor powering the fan, and even the fan itself. A loud motor usually means that it is working harder to rotate, which means higher energy consumption, while a noisy fan might mean that it is not moving the air as efficiently as it might.
A quiet hand dryer will usually be more efficient and use less energy simply because it is producing less noise as waste.
Ways to Reduce Hand Dryer Noise
Commercial hand dryers cannot normally be modified. The fan system, motor, and vents are designed to work together in a particular way and cannot normally be changed. Good maintenance practices can help to keep older hand dryers working well and minimising the amount of noise they create above their design limits.
Keeping the bearings for the motor properly lubricated and ensuring that the fan blades are kept clean will help to reduce excessive noise, but the only way to really reduce the amount of noise being created when drying hands is to choose a quieter hand dryer.
The design of the Mitsubishi Wave u02 and i01 hand dryers are designed to operate as quietly as possible. The Wave u02 will produce 62Db of noise at high power levels while the Wave i01 produces less – just 59Db of noise at high power. This is around a quarter of the loudness of a conventional dryer, and equivalent to a normal conversation rather than a fire alarm meaning that in the long term it will be less disruptive in terms of noise pollution in a school or office while also allowing people to dry their hands hygienically.