From the Lab

Science and research are at the core of what the Institute of Home Science does every day. Our team of scientists, home economists, energy experts and consumer advocates work diligently to develop the latest home innovations. Come take a look in our labs.

Our Labs by the Numbers
In the Whirlpool headquarters labs, banks of washing machines, dryers, dishwashers and all other kinds of home appliances run 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Every week, the Institute of Home Science:


Tests 400,000 lbs of textiles


Washes 23,800 loads of laundry


Dries 40,000 loads of laundry


Uses 4,200 pounds of detergent

LynThe IHS also freezes, bakes, roasts and sautés its way through:

30,000 biscuits
50,000 cookies
1,100 roasts
1,500 chickens
900 turkeys
250 hams
6,000 pizzas
1,000 loaves of bread
2,000 gallons of marinara sauce
5120 1/4 pounds of hamburger
200 pounds of chocolate

The numbers are staggering. But with each and every test, we gain new insights into how to make each home chore less of an obligation. By understanding consumers’ evolving needs , we can develop the appliances found in the marketplace today and dream up the innovative technologies of tomorrow.

Research In the Kitchen: Proprietary Whirlpool Refrigerator Habits, Practices and Needs Study (2012)

Fun Facts…Did You Know?

  • The average four-person U.S. household opens the fridge 40 to 60 times a day.
  • 70% of consumers use a list when they go grocery shopping…but only 13% of those actually stick to that list.
  • Women are more likely to throw away food if at all past the expiration date than men.
  • Women are more likely than men to eat leftovers in the next day; men are more likely to eat them 2-5 days later.
  • An average U.S consumer cleans any part of the interior of their refrigerator once a month. However, only about 50% removes the shelves when cleaning.

According to another Whirlpool Corporation study, a survey conducted online by Harris Interactive® in 2009…


  • We’re creatures of habit, but we can branch out a little bit; 35% of consumers said they mostly cook what they know, but might try a new recipe when entertaining.
  • Of the consumers who cook for the holidays, 52% said they do the most cooking for Thanksgiving.
  • 58% of consumers said they use their microwave on a daily basis.
  • Nearly half of the consumers surveyed (47%) said the microwave is used most often to reheat leftovers, followed by prepared/frozen foods (17%) and heating water/beverages (15%).
  • The majority of adults (70%) also said they give their major appliances a good cleaning more than once a year.
  • Regionally, consumers in the Northeast (31%) and in the South (25%) are more likely to clean their major appliances once every 2-5 months.
  • Consumers in the Midwest say they clean their appliances once every 6-11 months (27%), while consumers in the West said they clean their major appliances once a year or less (29%).
  • Consumers who are married are more likely to clean their major appliances once every 2-5 months (29%) than their single/never married counterparts who say they clean their major appliances once a year or less (29%).

Wondering who does our research? Find out here.