Wipers are an indispensable tool for performing a particular task in any facility. It’s important to select the right wiper system for a given task, taking into account its influence safety.

In manufacturing environments, wipers are ever-present. They are used in nearly every aspect of a facility’s production, equipment, maintenance and housekeeping operations

Wipers generally fall into two categories
Textiles (including rags and rental shop towels)
Disposables (including paper-based and non-woven)

Rags are typically clothing leftovers and can vary widely in quality, size and composition. They are not engineered for wiping purposes and some, such as 100% synthetic fibre rags or synthetic-rich blends, may have poor absorbency.

Woven textiles like cloth towels that are laundered by an offsite facility may be strong but may also incur hidden costs associated with rental shop towels to recover loss or damage during rental use.

Disposable wipers differ from rags and reusable shop towels in a number of ways. They offer the durability and feel of a cloth and are available in consistent sizes, shapes and thicknesses.

However their selection has to be based strictly on the basis of their absorbency, solvent-resistance, purity, low level of particulates (such as lint), or a combination of these and other factors, as per required intent.

They can also be engineered for specific tasks, such as preventing cross contamination and inhibiting the growth of odour-causing bacteria via built-in antimicrobial protection.

Even though the selection process of selecting a wiping system may be very stringent but one must not forget the user’s safety and its impact on his health.

Studies have proven that traces of heavy metals, such as lead, cadmium and antimony may be absorbed by the towels during laundering and may get transported onto the user. This may in turn find way into his meals. Depending on the length of exposure to these contaminants, this can result in symptoms ranging from fatigue and headaches to more serious health problems such as damage to the urinary, nervous and reproductive systems. Lead and other heavy metals can also be carried home from the workplace via workers’ skin or clothing, potentially exposing other family members, including young children.

Hence it is suggested to use disposable ware where ever possible or in areas susceptible to grease and heavy metallic fumes. These would offer a better and safer work environment for employees and employers both.