Commercial vs. Homestyle Laundry Machines

When it comes to Long Term Care – Which should you choose?

In an effort to reduce capital expenditures in institutions like Long Term Care facilities, many Laundry for Healthcare Facilitiesdecision makers are turning to purchasing smaller homestyle laundry machines, as opposed to the larger commercial type machines. Facilities of this type are constantly working toward cost savings and have made the move to these smaller machines, with the thought that they are less expensive, and can still accommodate the needs of a long term care environment. But they may not be considering all of the costs involved, from a long term overall standpoint.

While there may be upfront, short term savings in purchasing homestyle machines over commercial laundry machines, the long term costs can add up quickly and may exceed the overall costs of having commercial machines in place. Only in certain circumstances is it beneficial from an overall cost standpoint to utilize homestyle machines over commercial machines, and one should consider the total overall costs when deciding which route to go.

Factors to Consider When Choosing Laundry Machines:

  • Energy costs
  • Water usage and costs
  • Labor costs
  • Cost of linen replacement
  • Chemical costs
  • Indirect costs

Aside from the factors listed above, the fact that most commercial machines require an automated chemical dispensing system should also factor into the decision. Having automated dispenser (provided it is installed and programmed correctly by a chemical professional) minimizes user error, which often contributes to increased costs. A homestyle machine is likely neither able to handle the potential volume of laundry, nor able to handle the types of soils and linens, i.e., greasy rags, dirty mop heads, and other items that will degrade the components and shorten the life expectancy of the machine.

The key factor that should dictate which investment to go with is the volume of laundry that will be washed, unless very little laundry is being processed, commercial is the way to go. Most long term care institutions are doing large enough volumes of laundry to warrant the investment of commercial machines. The facility decision makers should consider long-term total costs instead of just the upfront savings of buying homestyle laundry machines.

Andy Gail is the Associate Product Manager – Disinfectants, Insecticides, Laundry and Warewashing for the Betco Corporation. He is driven to ensure a cleaner more sustainable future through products, and programs that you inspire and we innovate. When not disinfecting or changing loads of laundry, Andy enjoys spending time with friends and traveling. Click here to contact Andy directly.

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