Consumer organisation Which? has released a report which throws into doubt the claims of one of the UK’s leading manufacturers of water softening products.
"Washing machines live longer with Calgon" is the catchphrase of the company whose products are used by householders to help prevent limescale building up in their washing machines. But new research by Which? has questioned the validity of the claim.
A report by the Guardian said Which? simulated three years’ worth of wash cycles at 40 degrees and found that while Calgon did reduce limescale build-up, the amount that would have accumulated over that time was not sufficient enough to require owners to organise washing machine repairs.
Which? said it would take between six and eight years, in an area with particularly hard water, for enough limescale to build up in a "normal machine" and start causing problems. It said money spent during that time on Calgon could be used to buy a new washer, and certainly cover any washing machine repairs.
Calgon described the report as "highly misleading".
A spokesperson for the company said: "There is no dispute that the regular use of Calgon prevents limescale build-up in washing machines. Limescale build-up does cause problems, especially for users living in hard water areas."