Laundry packet standard doesn’t go far enough
The convenience of laundry detergent packets has a dangerous downside: Tens of thousands of children have been exposed to the colorful, bite-sized packages since their introduction in 2012, leading to hundreds of hospital visits for injuries that include seizures, vomiting, and respiratory arrest. ASTM International, the non-profit standards-setting organization, is developing a voluntary standard designed to make the packets safer. Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy arm of Consumer Reports, joined other consumer groups this week in casting a negative vote … (read more)
Pricey washer produces lackluster laundry
Spend $ 1,000 on a top-loading washer and you probably have a laundry list of expectations. At the top of that list is laundry so clean that even the tough stains are washed away. But that’s not what happened when Consumer Reports tested a $ 1,000 washing machine from Fisher & Paykel.
The manufacturer’s website boasts that their washers use world-first technology to deliver better clothes care and reliability. This technology helps boost the price. We tested the Fisher & Paykel AquaSmart WL4227P1, … (read more)
Laundry rooms move out of the basement
Carrying loads of dirty laundry from the bedroom down to the basement or utility room is a cumbersome task at best. That’s one reason more homeowners are putting the laundry room closer to the source of the dirty clothes and linens, according to the National Association of Home Builders. In other residences the washer and dryer live next to such gathering places as the family room.
And in some homes a second set of washers and dryers has been added to large … (read more)
Should color-safe bleach be used in every laundry load?
It seems that using color-safe bleach (i.e., Clorox 2) is often suggested, but does it really work? Is it worth buying this laundry additive or is using detergent alone good enough?
—David Bassan Necedah, WI
Color-safe bleach is useful if you need to whiten or lighten up an item that cannot be bleached with chlorine bleach, that has a stain that’s out of the ordinary on it (you spilled red wine, fruit juice, blood, or something … (read more)
GE’s RightHeight laundry duo give laundry a lift
Front-loading washers have their advantages but the design isn’t that convenient and they require lots of bending. For an appliance that’s used so frequently, you’d think manufacturers would increase the machine’s height. And that’s what GE has done. Consumer Reports tested the GE GFWR4805FMC front-loader and matching electric dryer GE GFDR485EFMC with RightHeight Design. Here’s what we found.
The built-in risers boost the machine’s height by about seven inches, making it much easier to load and unload laundry from the … (read more)
Confusing laundry caps can lead to overdosing
You know your life isn’t what it should be when you have to use a flashlight to find the appropriate fill line on the inside of a laundry detergent cap. The markings tell you how much detergent to use. When you can’t see them or they’re confusing, you can end up dumping too much detergent into your washing machine. That sudsy surplus can lead to all sorts of problems including prolonged rinse cycles and money wasted on both detergent and water.
Consumer … (read more)
Tide starts pitching its laundry detergent to men
For the first time in its 66 year history, some Tide commercials are featuring husbands doing the laundry. Imagine that—men washing and folding their family’s clothes. What’s next? Vacuuming? Maybe so. Men are spending two more minutes a day on chores than they did eight years ago—an average of 16 minutes a day. At that pace it’ll take a while for them to catch up to the 52 minutes of daily housework performed by women. Still, cleaning brands are taking notice … (read more)
CPSC issues safety alert for single-use laundry pods
Safety concerns over single-use laundry detergents pods escalated again today with an official alert from the Consumer Products Safety Commission advising parents and caregivers to lock up these products and keep them away from children. In September, Consumers Union, the policy and advocacy division of Consumer Reports, wrote the CPSC urging its staff to investigate the matter and consider stricter regulations.
Today’s action by the CSPC stops short of our requests, though it underscores the dangers posed by … (read more)