Doing the laundry probably isn't high on anyone's list of fun things to do, so anything that speeds up the chore, while also cutting down on the amount of water and energy used, is going to be welcome. A new washing machine from Russell Hobbs looks to accomplish all these goals with its "super rapid wash" cycle rinsing and spinning a load of lightly soiled clothes in a world record time of just 12 minutes as opposed to an average 90-minute wash cycle.
The time and water savings come courtesy of a twin jet system that injects detergent and water onto the dirty laundry via two nozzles instead of one. Russell Hobbs says its 12-minute washers can save two years and four months of washing time over the average adult's lifetime, while cutting energy usage by 30 percent and water consumption by 15 percent – which apparently equates to saving enough water to fill 17 average-sized swimming pools. This is based on the average machine using 90 liters (23.7 US Gal) of water compared to the 12 minute cycle using 30 liters (7.7 Gal), five times a week.
The 12 minute cycle won't do the job on heavily soiled laundry, which will require using one of the machine's 14 other programs. Other features include extra spinning and rinsing programs, variable temperature, spin speeds and a delay start function. The machine also has a half load detection system to cut washing time, water consumption and energy on certain programs.
Currently, the Russell Hobbs 12 minute wash cycle machines are only available in the UK through ASDA direct, where prices start at GBP247 (approx. US$399) for a white seven kilogram (15.4 lb) load model, increase to GBP300 (approx. US$484) for a seven kilogram Graphite model and top out at GBP320 (approx. US$516) for a white nine kilogram (20 lb) load model.