How Schools can Save Money and the Environment

This post will show you how schools can save thousands of dollars by switching from paper towels to energy efficient hand dryers.

Read the example below that shows how a typical school can save up to $1,000. Imagine where that money could go in a school budget?

Not only can you save money by switching to energy efficient hand dryers, you will also eliminate the other issues with paper towels, such as:

  •          Blocked drains
  •          Overflowing bins
  •          Always having to replenish paper towels
  •          Problems from having empty paper towel dispensers

In the example below, we take a school with 400 pupils and 40 staff. 

School saves money

On average the staff will visit the toilet 4.5 times a day and students 3.5 times.

It costs between 0.1 to 0.3 cents per paper towel and we assume that staff and pupils will use 3 paper towels per dry. However, this is conservative as more towels may get used as they stick together when taking them from the dispenser.

For a school of this size, 744,000 paper towels will be used each year. This costs a school $1,488 on average, each year.  A huge chunk of a school budget!

In comparison an energy efficient hand dryer like the Dryflow Elite Mk2, would cost $455 for the whole year.

A massive saving of $1033 a year!


Worked Example

For a typical school:

40 staff and 400 pupils


Power Towels:

Annual amount of paper towels used = 744,000

Annual production of CO2 = 5,580kg

Annual cost = $1,488


Energy Efficient Hand Dryer:

Annual amount of electricity used = 1516 kW/h

Annual production of CO2 = 360 to 495kg

Annual cost to run the hand dryer = $455 (based on 30cents per kW/h)


Total Annual Savings:

Cost savings = $1033

CO2 = 5,085kg/CO2


Hand Dryer in this example:

Dryflow Elite Mk2

Dry time: 17 to 22 seconds

Rated Power: 1000 Watts

Watt Hours Per Dry: 6.11Wh


Other Benefits:

No more:

blocked toilets | Overflowing bins | Wasted staff time filling dispensers | Empty dispensers


Based on Dysons research into the carbon emissions of paper towel manufacture it is calculated that each dry of the hands with 3 paper towels has created 22.5g CO2. This production is from:

  • Chopping down trees
  • Transportation of raw materials for processing
  • The energy used to process
  • Further transportation to finishing mills
  • Energy used to manufacture the paper product and packaging
  • Further transportation to the main warehouse
  • Distribution to local warehouses
  • Delivery to the customer

And all the above is on a constant replenishing cycle


Also, paper towels can not be recycled. They can only be made from recycled paper.  So, the contaminated waste usually ends up in land fill. Worse still… the decomposition produces methane gas which is more potent than carbon dioxide!

As you see from the example above, the estimated saving of carbon dioxide from switching is around 5,085kg/CO2.

Paper towels also bring about several issues away from cost and environment which hand dryers solve.

  • The need to constantly replenish and check to status of the dispensers, which is very time consuming.
  • If the dispensers are not replenished, the toilet roll gets used which means there is soon no toilet roll! A big problem.
  • Frequently when schools contact us to buy hand dryers it is because the toilets are constantly getting blocked with paper towels that can not move down the u-bend. Blockages can be very costly, unhygienic and unpleasant.
  • The physical mess of overflowing waste bins and paper towels in the sinks and on the floor. This is a common problem is schools that still use paper towels instead of hand dryers.
  • Storage. Someone must make sure there is enough stock of paper towels and that they are stored securely, another extra hassle.


So hopefully you see how switching to hand dryers can be beneficial to a school for a number of reasons.




For more information or for help in finding your ideal hand dryer, please call us on 1300 HANDRY or (+61) 1300 426 379, use our contact us page or email us at

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