Is there any issue with using an electric hand dryer to dry your hands after netilas yadayim either for a seudah or to remove ruach rah?


2 Answers 2



The hands must be dried very well after washing . . . The hands must be dried with a towel [or similar cloth], as the act of drying the hands helps to clean the hands properly.

Letting the hands dry on their own or via an electric air blower is not L’Chatchilah. (See Shulchan Aruch HaRav 158:17. See Shu”t Az Nidberu Vol. 8 Siman 52 and Vol.9 Siman 64 where he tries to find a leniency for using the air blowers. Similarly other Poskim say that B’Sha’as HaDchak the air blower should be used, rather than letting the hands dry on their own)

  • You can add Qitzur Shulhhan 'Arukh - Yalqut Yosef (Orahh Hayim 4:19) to this conclusion. He states that, if a person does not have a towel, a hand drying machine can be used.
    – Lee
    Commented Oct 11, 2015 at 20:52

The Rivevos Ephraim 2:68:4 writes that it once happened that he went to wash his hands for bread and there was nothing to dry his hands with but there was an electric hand dryer. He wondered if an electric hand dryer is ok to use, he reasoned, what is the difference how one dries his hands as long as they end up being dry and clean. He searched for someone who dealt with this question until he found the Shu”t Chaim B’yad which brings two reasons which allows an electric hand dryer. He equates the sun (which is mutar to use) to an electric hand dryer. He ends off by quoting Rav Dovid Rosenberg who wrote a long teshuvah to explain why an electric hand dryer should be assur.

Rav Eliyashiv’s (Ashrei Ish pg.202:7) psak is that using an electric handdryer is permissible.

  • Could you summarize the reason why it's problematic?
    – robev
    Commented Sep 4, 2018 at 16:03

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