Shop towels are one of the most important things you can own if you work with furniture, machinery, or equipment which needs to be wiped down after use, or if you need to clean your hands on a regular basis. Far superior to things like paper towels and rags, shop towels are absolutely essential for any workshop. No workshop should be without these versatile products. In fact, you’ll be surprised just how many industries use shop towels in their garages and warehouses. But what should you look for when purchasing them? We’ve put together this handy guide to give you all the information you need.
What Are Shop Towels?
Shop towels are the industry-standard cleaning product for any workshop that regularly deals with spills like water, grease, or grime. They are heavy-duty towels that are both absorbent and durable, able to clean up grease, liquids, and other spoils in a garage or woodshop environment. They are usually very strong and work effectively even when wet.
Shop towels are made from a number of different things, both natural and chemical. For example, one of the most popular brands, Sellars, makes their shop towels with 40% post-consumer paper waste, tree fibers, and synthetic latex resin. Other brands use 100% recycled materials. Some brands produce towels that can be used multiple times before they have to be discarded.
Do You Need Shop Towels?
Thanks to their durability, shop towels are a versatile product that can be used in a number of different scenarios. Whether you work in a garage, kitchen, automotive shop, or even a hospital, you’ll undoubtedly have some use for shop towels when going about your business.
The number one use for shop towels is drying your hands. These towels provide a hygienic solution to keeping your hands clean in a number of professions. If you work in an industry that deals with greasy substances or food prep, shop towels will come in handy.
Clearing up grease
Many workshops, especially in the auto industry, use shop towels to clear up heavy grease and oil spills. Shop towels are so absorbent they can wipe up grease and oil spills from around the automotive shop with ease.
Removing the grease from the towels, however, can be a tricky job. Luckily, electronicsNmore shows you how to get grease stains out of fabrics (including clothing) easily:
Wiping up solvents and inks
Many printing companies use soft towels to clean up any ink spillages.
Cleaning food processing
You’ll find shop towels in most industrial kitchens for cleaning up any food processing mess.
General office cleaning
Shop towels are so versatile, that they can even be used to clean and dust an office. You can also use them to polish surfaces and ornaments in your home.
Shop towels are also used in medical facilities and anywhere which needs to sanitize surfaces before use. Hospitals combine shop towels with a sanitizing product to wipe down operating tables. Tattoos and massage parlors also use shop towels to disinfect their equipment.
Should I Use Shop Towels or Paper Towels?
Shop towels are far superior to kitchen paper towels because they are more absorbent and durable. You can use one shop towel for jobs that would require several paper towels, making them an environment-friendly alternative. They are also softer, which makes them a carpenter’s best friend when wiping down finished surfaces.
Shop towels are also a better choice than some rags. Rags can be made from polyester which is not absorbent. We should also mention that shop towels tend to be a lot cheaper than rags and other clothes, and are machine washable so they can be reused for a long time.
You can also find disposable shop towels on the market. However, we don’t recommend these. Disposable towels end up being more expensive in the long run and are also not good for the environment.
What Should I Consider When Buying Shop Towels?
Before you buy any product, you may want to consider these factors when choosing which shop towels are right for you.
You can buy shop towels as individual packs or in bulk. If you are buying for your workplace you may want to shop around and find the best deal for a large number of towels.
Shop towels are both absorbent and biodegradable. This makes them an eco-friendly addition to any workplace environment. You can also find certain shop towel brands which make their product with 100% recycled material. Depending on where you look, these may cost more than your typical shop towel pack.
A lot of shop towels are one-use only, although now many reusable options have also entered the market. Consider opting for these reusable options and make sure they are machine washable as that makes them very easy to maintain.
Shop towels come in a variety of colors, all of which are purely cosmetic. The most common color is red, but if you look hard enough you’ll be able to find other colors to suit your taste.
You will have to be mindful about which shop towels to purchase for your workplace, depending on the sort of machinery and equipment you work with on a daily basis. Most shop towels are food safe and can be used in the kitchen, but you may want to double-check before making a purchase. Also, you would want very durable towels if you want to clean tools and machinery with them. If you want to clean cars, then shop towels made with soft scratch-resistant material are the obvious choice.
Shop Towel Price Range
Shop towels are very inexpensive compared to synthetic rags and even some paper towels. You can purchase packs of 200 for $25. You can also find some great discounts when you purchase in bulk. For example, you can buy an 8×200 pack of towels for $100.