Friday, September 14, 2007

Unintended Consequences 

Anyone who has done laundry knows water needs to be at a certain temperature to get clothes clean. The US Dept. of Energy, in its infinite wisdom decided to impose requirements to use 21% less energy in the washing machines. The industry complied. One way to attain this goal is to lower water temperatures. Result?

It seems that clothes don't get as clean as they have in the past because of the lower water temperatures. What will people do if their clothes don't come clean? They will wash them again! We may use less energy per load but may very well increase the number of loads of laundry we do. So much for energy savings. (This reference is the summary version; original information was in a Consumer Reports article.)

Do we really want the feds to start micr0-managing like this?