Clare Humphrey, category manager at the Professional division of Miele, sets out the benefits of an on-premise laundry
The cost of outsourcing laundry for businesses such as hotels and veterinary practices can often mean that an on-premise laundry (OPL) facility is a far more effective option.
OPL not only reduces the business’ overheads, but also has other key benefits, including faster turnaround of essential equipment, such as linen, uniform and clothing. It also helps to improve infection control by reducing the amount of time soiled items spend in bags waiting to be laundered.
It’s important to choose the right machines when introducing OPL, to offer the business the maximum in life cycle costings.
The key is to select equipment designed for business use rather than domestic use. Here are the main benefits commercial laundry equipment provides over domestic:
- Durability: Commercial washing machines are designed to withstand constant use over many years. For example, Miele’s Little Giants washing machines are tested to run for 30,000 cycles – that’s eight cycles a day, seven days a week, for over 10 years. In contrast, domestic machines are typically designed to last for only 5,000 cycles. The Little Giants tumble dryers are tested to run for 40,000 cycles. The components of commercial machines are also designed to withstand constant use, with items such as hinges, handles and door locks on every Miele washing machines tested to perform for 60,000 operations. This rigorous testing results in a machine that is less likely to break down due to frequent use.
- Cost: While commercial washing machines are more expensive as an initial purchase, the cost over the life of the machines makes it a more cost-effective option. Constant use of domestic machines result in faster wear and tear and more regular upgrades. Commercial equipment requires less maintenance work, resulting in a cheaper long-term cost.
- Speed: Commercial machines have shorter cycle times than domestic. For example, the Miele Little Giants range can wash and dry 6.5kg of laundry in 85 minutes. By comparison, domestic machines typically take around 3.5 hours to wash and dry the same amount of laundry. The benefit of this time saving can be crucial in many businesses. For example, in hotels this means turning around rooms quickly and being prepared for new customers due to arrive.
- Water Regulatory Advisory Scheme (WRAS) compliance: WRAS is a regulation which means that washing machines cannot allow soiled or contaminated water from the washer to enter the mains supply. It’s a legal requirement for healthcare organisations to be compliant with this. Certain commercial laundry equipment suppliers are approved by WRAS to the highest level (category 5), which no domestic machines can offer.