The Germiest Places in America
We call them the dirty dozen. It’s Health magazines laundry list of the germiest places you’re likely to encounter during an average day.
A Load of Wet Laundry
“Clean clothes” is a whopper of an oxymoron. “Anytime you transfer underwear from the washer to the dryer, you’re going to get E. coli on your hands,” Gerba says. Just one soiled undergarment can spread bacteria to the whole load and the machine.
Reduce the risk: Run your washer and dryer at 150ºF, and wash whites with bleach (not the color-safe type; it doesn’t pack the same punch), which kills 99% of bugs. Transfer wet laundry to the dryer quickly so germs don’t multiply, wash underwear separately (there’s about a gram of feces -- a quarter the size of a small peanut -- in every pair of dirty underwear), and dry for at least 45 minutes. Wash your hands after laundering, and run a cycle of bleach and water between loads to eliminate any lingering bugs.
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