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In this day and age the whole world seems obsessed with hygiene and cleanliness and the recent Swine Flu outbreak has just gone to heighten the awareness and in some cases paranoia concerning daily hygiene. With this in mind it’s understandable that while some companies are going bust during the recession, hygiene companies will undoubtedly be making a decent profit with all this hype (necessary or unnecessary) that the media are feeding us.
When you think about it logically, it can’t just be soap and hand sanitizer gel sales that are escalating, the way we dispense our soap has become almost as important as which soap we use and how. Some people still opt for the old fashioned soap bar which slips out of your hands on a regular basis however these days most homes and public conveniences now use soap dispensers with liquid soap which ensures both ease of use and a higher level of hygiene.
*** What is it? ***
The Simplehuman Sensor Soap Pump is basically a hands free way of dispensing soap into your hands, therefore without having to touch anything to get soap you will not be picking up germs from the pumps that are normally found on regular dispensers.
*** How It Works ***
The dispenser holds 414ml (14oz) of soap and dispenses it in a shrewd and innovative way. You simply place your hands under the sensor which is clearly indicated and soap will instantly be dispensed into your hands, as little or as much as you require. There are different settings that you can change easily which enable you to alter how much soap is dispensed and there is even a built in timer which lasts 20 seconds (the minimum amount of time you should spend washing your hands).
*** Setting Up ***
The dispenser couldn’t be easier to set up, it requires 2 AA batteries which could be a downside for some people as it means an extra expense but we have now had the device over a year and have only changed the batteries once so they don’t suck up power like you’d expect them to. The batteries are inserted in the bottom of the dispenser, to insert the batteries you will need to unscrew two small screws. This seems like a bit of a job but it’s easily done, however I personally feel that a normal clip which you find on most battery compartments would have been more than sufficient therefore I think the fact that this device requires a screwdriver is a little over the top and unnecessary.
Once the batteries are inserted in the correct way you then need to insert the soap. Fortunately this is a lot easier than inserting the batteries and all that is required of you is to turn the top in a clockwise direction which opens the compartment enabling you to easily pour soap in. Once the soap is in you simply screw the top back on and you’re away. Be careful where you’re pouring the soap and don’t fill it too fill, the top does go down into the soap compartment by a couple of centimetres therefore if you fill the compartment right to the brim with soap you’re likely to be greeted with a bit of a mess.
The devices on/off switch is located at the back, at the bottom of the dispenser and is a click wheel. On the click wheel you’ll notice the word ‘Off’ next to a cluster of dots. These dots indicate how much soap you require to be dispensed, they go from one dot meaning off, two dots is the smallest amount of soap that can be dispensed, three dots and finally four dots which is the largest amount to be dispensed. At home we have it on the four dot setting as we find this is an appropriate amount of soap that you’ll need for a decent hand washing. The click wheel is incredibly easy to use and access and we have had no problems whatsoever with turning the device off or changing the settings.
*** Ease Of Use ***
As you’ve read, with the exception of the battery compartment the device is extremely easy to set up. One of the great things that I discovered about this device is that it doesn’t require you to turn it off after uses. I assumed you would need to turn the device off after every use but after the soap has been dispensed into your hand it simply goes back to standby mode where the front light is off therefore saving the batteries but is ready for the next person to use at any time.
A brilliant feature with this dispenser is the timer that it incorporates. As aforementioned, the timer lasts 20 seconds, the 20 seconds are indicated by the light situated above the dispenser and it means that you simply wash your hands until the light is no longer illuminated. This is a fantastic hygiene accessory however it’s not one that we use on a regular basis. I believe that most people know the correct way to wash their hands and for how long therefore no matter how much I like the inclusion of the timer I can’t help but think it’s a bit of a novelty item.
Luckily the dispenser itself isn’t a novelty item, it can be used anywhere in the house, we currently have it in the kitchen but of course it would sit perfectly on the edge of the bath if you wished to house your shower gel in it. It isn’t messy which was one of my main reservations when buying this item, once the soap has been dispensed into your hands no excess soap is released onto your surfaces which is brilliant. The blue light indicates exactly how long the soap will be dispensed for and means that there wont be any mess.
The sensor is, dare I say it, very sensitive and it works from the slightest movement therefore if you’re planning on moving the dispenser or replacing the batteries make sure you turn it off at the back to save yourself from accidentally activating the dispenser.
*** Who Will It Appeal To? ***
I personally feel like this soap dispenser has a wide appeal and will suit any home, it has a very modern touch and look to it and will smarten up your kitchen wonderfully. That said I do feel that this device will be a great asset for certain people; elderly people who have limited strength in their wrists, the device requires no strength at all so could be perfect for the elderly. Also parents with young children, this device will definitely encourage them to wash their hands as they’ll love the innovative design of the sensor.
*** Availability ***
When we purchased this device around 12 months ago it was selling at £19.99 from Argos, since then the price has shot up to £29.99. I feel that the price is far too high and will possibly discourage certain people from purchasing it. Therefore if you see this device at a discount price then snap it up because it’s an excellent device to have in your home.
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