Myth: Warm Water Cleans Best
Debunking a common misconception
Studies show that nearly 80% of people believe they should be cleaning with warm or hot water rather than room temperature. While some tasks such as doing the dishes are more ideal when using hot water, using hot water with certain chemical ingredients makes those chemicals volatile. This is due to the fast evaporation of hot water that will make the product less effective than letting the product clean for the duration it’s supposed to.
- For your floors: Washing floors with hot water can dull the finish on your floors and leave a “waxy” residue due to the fast evaporation of the water. Therefore, leaving behind all the dirt, grime and mineral deposits.
- For your counters: Stains and messes respond better to hot water as it lowers the surface tension which makes it easier to loosen the stain. In addition, hot water can effectively kill bacteria and microorganisms. However, hot water will only kill bacteria at temperatures that can seriously damage your skin or surface.
- For your hands: Numerous articles published in 2017 explain handwashing kills the same amount of germs whether you choose to wash your hands with cold water or hot water. The most important thing about handwashing is not the temperature, but it’s the amount of time spent. According to researchers, the recommended method for handwashing is cold to lukewarm water with ten seconds of lathering. You achieve the same results as washing for five seconds with hot water. Room temperature to cold water is the cheaper and safer approach to a cleaner environment.
Think of it this way — if you purchase your chemicals on the shelf while they are cold, they’re MEANT to be cold!
Cleaning with warm water has a greater negative impact on the environment, considering the amount of energy being used and all of the necessary tools needed in order to heat water. With this in mind, our ECOLOGO certified products are formulated to work best using cold water.
Hot water cleaning can quickly run up your energy bill and cost you more money long-term if there’s a need for equipment to heat up the water. Room temperature water is always accessible and doesn’t require multiple refills to maintain it’s temperature.
Mechanical and thermal energy produced by warm water was the best solution when it came down to soil removal until the higher demand for an environmentally friendly solution came into play. Cleaning product manufacturers have since battled chemical constraints and in doing so, have created cleaning products that work remarkably well in cold water for a cost-saving and an energy efficient solution.