This Is America’s Favorite Cleaning Task, But They May Not Be Doing It Right

Doing the laundry might not be everybody’s idea of a good time, but according to the American Cleaning Institute’s 2019 National Cleaning Survey, some 24% of the people polled named it as the household chore they like the best — enough to make it America’s favorite cleaning task.

Cleaning counters and vacuuming tied for second place at 21% each, followed by doing the dishes (17%), cleaning furniture and wiping windows (7% each), and polishing floors (4%).

The poll, which questioned 1,000 nationally representative U.S. adults, 18 and over, with an oversample of 500 millennials, was conducted by Wakefield Research on behalf of the Institute, which represents America’s $60 billion cleaning products industry.

The survey results also revealed that, when doing that laundry they like so much, only 35% of Americans always consult the fabric care advice on their garment labels, while 42% check it sometimes and 23% rarely or never bother.

In addition, the poll learned that 52% of the respondents wash with cold water half or all of the time, 32% use mainly warm water, and 14% tend to wash in hot water. The use of cold water, says the Institute, is a good thing because 90% of the energy used by a washing machine goes toward heating the water. There are many more ways to make your life more environmentally friendly.

“Cold water,” they add, “also protects clothes from fading, shrinking or bleeding and prevents some stains — such as makeup and blood — from becoming permanent.”

The survey applies only to the home, and didn’t solicit the opinions of those who clean professionally. It is well-known, however, that laundry and dry-cleaning workers earn the lowest median wage of any category in the country. These are the 25 lowest paying jobs in America.

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