In the age of heightened hygiene awareness, touchless soap dispensers are becoming an important addition to breakrooms and other shared spaces. With employees returning to the workplace, there is increased concern over minimizing contact with high-touch surfaces that could harbor germs.
Touchless soap dispensers allow users to wash their hands without ever having to touch the dispenser. This improves hand hygiene by reducing the spread of germs from one person to the next via the dispenser surface. The automated operation also encourages regular hand washing, as there is no need to manually pump soap. For breakroom spaces where many employees gather and use the same facilities, touchless technology is ideal.
These dispensers also dispense soap in measured doses, reducing waste. Many models include battery or AC power options for maximum flexibility. Smart sensors mean less maintenance, with soap refills only needing replacement periodically rather than daily. With modern and stylish designs, touchless dispensers also lend a polished, updated look to breakroom decor.
However, with many options on the market, choosing the right touchless soap dispenser requires some consideration. Here are the top factors to weigh when selecting a model for your breakroom:
Power source – Battery or electric? Battery-powered models offer total portability, while electric dispensers never need batteries replaced. Consider ease of access to power outlets.
Battery life – For battery-powered models, the battery lifespan affects maintenance. Units with long-life batteries require fewer battery swaps.
Ease of maintenance – Look for soap reservoirs that are easy to refill and batteries that are simple to replace. This ensures upkeep is quick.
Dose adjustment – The ability to tweak soap dosage helps prevent waste. Units with precision measurement valves allow exact dosing.
Materials – Durability matters with heavy breakroom use. Plastic housings may be more prone to damage while stainless steel offers ruggedness.
Design aesthetic – Matching the room’s decor maintains a cohesive look. Neutral colors blend in while bright hues make a statement.
Sensor technology – Infrared and ultrasonic sensors have slightly different detection properties to consider.
Adjustable sensor range – Wider ranges help ensure detection without false triggering. Look for tuning capabilities.
Vandal-proofing – Tamper-proof features prevent messes or damage from pranks. Locks and concealed openings help.
Reservoir capacity – Larger reservoirs require less frequent refilling, though may be trickier to install.
Warranty and support – Better coverage provides peace of mind. Look for 1+ years of comprehensive warranty.
Budget – Prices range dramatically based on features. Basic models start under $100 while industrial-grade units cost over $500.
Mount style – Wall mounts conserve counter space but may be tricky to install. Counter tops are simpler for DIY.
ADA compliance – For public spaces, ensure the unit follows accessibility guidelines for installation height, dispenser operation, and reach.
Keeping these factors in mind while shopping helps zero in on the ideal soap dispenser for your particular breakroom needs and preferences. Here are my top picks:
1. Simplehuman Touch-Free Soap Dispenser
This sleek stainless steel dispenser has an industrial modern vibe perfect for contemporary breakrooms. It features a flexible silicone valve that precisely measures just the right amount of soap per activation, preventing messy overflows.
- Battery or AC power
- Infrared sensor with adjustable range
- 34 oz capacity
- 10-year warranty
Pros: Precise dispensing valve,Fingerprint-proof coating, Sturdy metal construction, Flexible power options, Long warranty
Cons: Expensive, Metal shows smudges
Best for: Modern or industrial-style breakrooms seeking a durable and elegant touchless dispenser.
2. Lysol No-Touch Hand Soap System
The Lysol automatic dispenser combines trusted germ-killing action with touchless convenience. An antimicrobial additive in the soap kills 99.9% of bacteria.
- Battery powered
- Infrared sensor
- 16.9 oz capacity
- 12-month warranty
Pros: Added antimicrobial action, Angled nozzle, name-brand reputation, Reasonable price
Cons: Smaller reservoir, No dose adjustment, Some reliability complaints
Ideal For: Breakrooms that prefer trusted brand names and desire antimicrobial protection.
3. Alpine Industries Touchless Dispenser
With an affordable price, this dispenser offers the hygiene of touchless operation on a budget. The simple design is easy to load and maintain.
- 4 AA batteries
- Adjustable infrared sensor
- 34oz capacity
- 1-year warranty
Pros: Very affordable, Easy to install, Adjustable sensor range, Good entry-level option
Cons: Basic plastic housing, No dose control, Short 1-year warranty,AA batteries drain quickly
Ideal For: Price-conscious buyers wanting a basic but reliable touchless dispenser.
4. Rubbermaid HYGEN Touchless Dispenser
This dispenser boasts industrial-level durability with a smooth, integrated look. The impact-resistant reservoir resists cracking or leaks.
- 4 D batteries
- Infrared sensor
- 64oz capacity
- 3-year warranty
Pros: Very durable construction, Huge capacity, Generous 3-year warranty, Powerful sensor
Cons: Bulky, fixed dispense volume, Expensive batteries
Best For: Breakrooms demanding maximum ruggedness and large-capacity solutions.
5. GOJO LTX-12 Touchless Dispenser
GOJO’s battery-free dispenser is powered entirely by the push of the pump, making batteries unnecessary. The push mode also accommodates accessibility needs.
- Manual/touchless push operation
- 1275 dispense count when new
- 1-year warranty
Pros: No batteries to change, Flexible push option, Simple and reliable, Sanitary refills
Cons: No battery option, Not adjustable, Set dispense amount
Ideal For: Eco-friendly breakrooms wanting a dispenser with zero battery waste.
Choosing the right location and installing your dispenser properly ensures optimal performance. Here are some tips:
- Review manufacturer guidelines for detailed installation instructions.
- Position the unit above or near sinks for convenient use.
- Wall mounting frees up counter space but may require drilling holes and precise alignment.
- For counters, ensure the surface is level, clean and sturdy without screws/gaps.
- Check height is accessible for employees, following ADA guidelines for public restrooms.
- Use soap refills designed specifically for touchless systems for ideal dispensing.
- Replace batteries and refill soap based on dispenser specs to prevent malfunctions.
- Clean reservoir regularly by washing with warm water and mild detergent if soap scum builds up.
- Wipe down the exterior surface including sensor lenses to prevent dirt buildup.
- Ensure nothing blocks the sensor during use, like hand towels or debris.
- Adjust sensor range if needed to improve activation distance.
- Troubleshoot issues promptly, checking for low batteries, power connections or clogged valves.
- For dispensers under warranty, contact the manufacturer right away if service is needed.
To get the most out of your touchless soap dispenser, proper maintenance is key. Here are answers to some commonly asked questions:
How easy are they to install and mount? Most feature easy mounting hardware and an installation guide. However, first-time users should allot about 30 minutes to one hour to install. If drilling into walls, look for wall studs first.
How often do batteries need replacing? Every 3-6 months for alkaline batteries, or up to 1-2 years for lithium batteries. Higher traffic usage requires more frequent changes.
What kind of soap refills can be used? Check manufacturer guidelines, as many recommend specific refills designed for use with the valve type. Thinner, more watery soaps may leak.
Can the soap dosage be adjusted? Certain models feature adjustable valves to tweak dosing. Otherwise the dispensed amount is preset based on reservoir size.
How accurate are the touchless sensors? Infrared and ultrasonic sensors reliably detect hands under normal conditions. Adjustable detection range helps fine tune.
Are they prone to leaking issues? Quality models rarely leak, but inferior construction or improper soap refills can cause messiness.
How tamper and vandal proof are they? It varies. Some feature locking battery compartments and reservoirs. Avoid models with exposed openings.
What warranty is included? Most have 1-2 year warranties. Higher-end units offer 5-10 years, showing long-term durability.
What maintenance is required? Occasional cleaning, battery swaps, refills when empty. Higher traffic = more frequent maintenance.
How do I troubleshoot issues? Consult manual for model-specific steps. Common solutions include adjusting/cleaning sensor, checking power source, replenishing batteries/soap.
By transitioning to touchless soap dispensers, businesses can help protect employee health in shared facilities. The hygienic operation reduces contact transmission points and encourages proper hand washing. While automatic operation simplifies maintenance, investing in durable construction ensures years of reliable service. Considering factors like design, sensor technology and dose control allows buyers to select the ideal solution to suit their breakroom needs and budget.