Lab Test: Quality of Paper Towel

Pages: 5 (1315 words) Published: October 6, 2013
Finding the best quality paper towel

Question:
Which paper towel has the highest quality overall?

Background:
Past tests of the highest quality paper towel showed that Bounty was the best choice for a kitchen paper towel. Although it wasn’t the most absorbent, which was Brawny, it was rather strong in both durability and absorbency. (consumerreports.org)

Industrial and 7th generation are most commonly used in public places such as; School bathrooms, public restrooms and public sinks. 7th generation is made of 100% recycled paper. In another test, between Viva and 7th generation, 7th generation was chosen as the best choice. This test also took into account for the price of each role. (http://www.dailyfinance.com)

Viva paper towels are made of 100% virgin fiber(http://www.vivatowels.com), while Bounty is made of virgin wood pulp. (http://www.bountytowels.com) Brawny is made of domestic materials from Oregon, Louisiana and Florida.(http://www.brawnytowels.com)

In terms of popularity, Bounty, Brawny and Viva are the most known brands and are used commonly in kitchens.

Hypothesis:
For this project, I needed 3 different hypothesis. 1 for the absorbency, 1 for durability and 1 for the over best quality paper towel. My first one, for absorbency, was: If the thickness of the paper towel affects the amount of water the towel takes in, then the Bounty, will absorb more. This sounds the most sensible because the thicker the paper towel, the more space there is to absorb the water.

For durability, I hypothesized: If the material of the paper towel affects the durability of the towel, then the weaker material will not be as strong. I said this because cheaper toilet paper, suggests poorer quality, meaning that the materials won’t be as strong or durable as another, more expensive one.

My last hypothesis put together the two to predict the overall highest quality paper towel. If the money put into making the paper towel affects the overall quality, then the cheaper paper towels would not be the best choice as the “better picker upper”.

Methods:

The first method I will explain is the test I used to find the most absorbent paper towel. First, you need to make sure you have all the materials needed. The next step is to fill a graduated cylinder with exactly 100 ml of tap water. Once filled, fold the 4 by 4 inch paper towel, hotdog style so it can fit into the graduated cylinder. With a pair of tweezers, grip the paper towel at the end and dip it into the graduated cylinder for exactly 15 seconds, taking care not to let the paper towel fall as it will take longer than 15 seconds to get out. After the 15 seconds hold the wet paper towel over the graduated cylinder and allow the water to stop dripping or for it to stop dripping as much. Once you have finished that, place the paper towel somewhere or dispose of it. Make sure you have 2 more 4x4 inch paper towel pieces so you can have more than one trial to get accurate results. Next, find the amount of water left but make sure you look at the bottom of the meniscus for an accurate measurement. Lastly,calculate the amount of water the paper towel soaked up using this equation:

Original amount of water - Amount of water left = The amount of water soaked up. Do the same for the other paper towel brands.

Record your data.

For durability, I used a different method. Just like the other procedure, you need to make sure you have all materials.First, get a 25x13 cm paper towel and tape each end length-wise to the sides of the bin. Make sure you tape it so that the surface of the paper towel is straight and flat. Try to maintain a constant tension. With an eye dropper, drop some water onto the paper towel. Don’t make it too wet so that the towel doesn’t rip instantly or enough so it would be easier to rip it by putting slight pressure onto it. Wait thirty seconds before moving on. With one washer, place that gently onto the wet paper towel....
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