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NSF Develops Protocol to Certify Sanitizing Clothes Washers
Mar 16, 2007
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NSF International (Ann Arbor, Michigan, U.S.) developed a new protocol for testing and certifying residential clothes washers to ensure they effectively sanitize laundry. Whirlpool Corporation (Benton Harbor, Michigan) is the first appliance OEM to certify select clothes washer models to the protocol.

NSF Protocol P172 – Sanitization Performance of Residential and Commercial, Family Sized Clothes Washers (NSF P172) is said to be the first U.S. protocol to test and certify residential clothes washers with sanitizing cycles. The protocol combines provisions from the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers (AHAM), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the Department of Energy under one protocol.

Protocol requirements include testing to ensure that:

  • at least 99.9 percent of test organisms are removed when the washer’s sanitization cycle is selected
  • there is no carryover of test organisms between loads after sanitization cycle is used

The Whirlpool clothes washers that have met the requirements of the protocol and bear the NSF certification mark include the Duet HT(R) and Duet(R)Sport(TM) HT, the Maytag(R) Epic(TM), and the Kenmore Elite(R) HE2t(TM), HE3t(TM) and HE5t(TM).

The protocol was developed by a panel that included representatives from the University of Iowa Hygienic Laboratory, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Silliker Laboratories, Stilwell Consulting, American Association of Textile Chemists and Colorists (AATCC), and the Centre for Research on Environmental Microbiology (CREM).

NSF International is an independent, not-for-profit organization that helps protect consumers by certifying products and writing standards for food, water, air, and consumer goods.

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