Monday, October 29, 2007

How Big is a Load of Laundry?

Liquid laundry detergent in concentrated form seems to be all the rage lately. This jug says it will wash 40 loads, while that one boasts it is good for 50--AND will make your clothes smell like a mountain fresh tropical rainforest blooming with lavender and citrus blossoms.

Only how big a load are they talking about?

I would say I run my washing machine an average of five times a week. I try not to run it unless it's at least three-quarters full, despite the "small load" feature. But I have a sneaking suspicion that in the eyes of Big Detergent, I am not doing five loads a week. According to the label promising 50 loads, that jug should last for ten weeks, or three and a half months. I'm lucky if I can make it stretch for two weeks.

It seems to me the more loads proclaimed on the label, the smaller the cap used to measure the liquid. Hard pressed to believe I can clean a pile of towels or a week's worth of colors for three people with what amounts to a single "shot" of detergent, I've been known to pour in two or more capfuls.

I'm looking at the deceptive jug now: 78 fluid ounces of "2X Double Concentrated" detergent. On the back: "This smaller bottle has the cleaning power to clean 50 loads of laundry." The finer print below is where they cover their tushies: "Use more for large or heavily soiled loads." They don't say how much more or larger, leaving that to the consumer's discretion.

Apparently, their idea of a load is a couple of not-so-dirty shirts and a sock that lost its mate on a previous wash run.

I can probably squeeze two more loads out of the current jug. Tomorrow we go grocery shopping, and I will buy a new jug.

Once I open that new jug, I resolve to use only one capful per load of laundry. I will keep track here of how many loads I wash until that jug is empty. Maybe then I can figure out how big they think a load of laundry is.

But something tells me it's not as big as the other kind of load they're giving me.


JulieLeto said...

This is why I use powder.

Karen Lingefelt said...

I probably should've mentioned (but it's been many years since we made the switch, and the liquid has been become second nature) that I used to use powder. But our firstborn had a thing for scooping it out...and scooping...and scooping...till the contents of the entire box was in the washing machine.

Vicki said...

I never thought about this before. I don't actually measure when I pour the liquid in. Just sort eyeball it. Like a RR of laundry instead of the ever popular EVOO. :D

Erica Ridley said...

I'm like Vicki. I put in "some". "Some" tends to work.

That's also how I do recipes.

"How much [enter ingredient here], Erica?"

"Oh, you know. Some."