Newswise — Sixty percent of Americans agree that springtime is the best time to rid their homes of dirt and clutter, according to the 2006 Soap and Detergent Association (SDA) Spring Cleaning Survey. More than one-third (37%) of respondents, however, prefer to conduct their major cleaning projects at other times throughout the year.

"For most Americans, spring is a great time to clean and freshen up their home," said Brian Sansoni, SDA Vice President of Communication. "They are getting rid of a winter's worth of dust, dirt and grime. Of course, people also appreciate that there are significant physical and emotional benefits to keeping a clean house all year long."

The Spring Cleaning Survey, conducted by International Communications Research for SDA, revealed the top benefits consumers realize from frequent house cleaning:

"¢ 98% feel good about themselves when their home is clean"¢ 97% believe their families appreciate a clean home"¢ 97% say their furnishings will last longer if they are cleaned regularly"¢ 94% understand that cleaning can help reduce incidences of illness, allergies and asthma"¢ 89% say their clothes will last longer if they are clean

Survey participants also were asked to best describe their personal cleaning product purchases.

"¢ Forty-four percent describe themselves as "familiar" buyers, selecting only what they need and sticking with known products and brands."¢ Twenty-two percent claim to be "creative," buying a variety of products to enhance their homes."¢ "Advanced" purchasers (21%) buy both products they need and products they want, trying new items more frequently."¢ Finally, "experimentals" (7%) always try what is new and more convenient.

Innovations for All Types

More women than men claim to be creative and advanced shoppers, and younger shoppers (ages 18-34) are more likely to say they are experimental shoppers. But for all of these categories of shoppers, cleaning products keep coming in more shapes, sizes and formulations. More recent trends include:

"¢ A wider variety of high efficiency (HE) laundry detergents to meet the needs of the growing number of consumers who are purchasing HE washing machines."¢ Concentrated laundry detergents that have added cleaning power, as well as soften and have sophisticated, even cultural scents."¢ An expanding shelf of specialized wipes for cleaning the most popular surfaces in the house."¢ Soaps and other cleaning products that stimulate the senses, offering the look, feel and scent of a luxury product.

Finally, 91 percent of those surveyed agreed that cleaning products are more convenient than ever, and 80 percent agreed that cleaning products have evolved to better fit their lifestyles. When asked to describe their cleaning patterns, more than half (54%) of the respondents report that they prefer to clean on a daily or weekly basis. Nineteen percent of the respondents said they do not clean on a regular schedule, but when they do so, it is very thorough. Eighteen percent said they find they always have a lot of clutter around the house.

"Today's range of cleaning product choices really allows people to use products that fit their personal cleaning routines and styles," said Sansoni. "Innovations in cleaning products are advancing constantly. It's a hallmark of our industry."

SDA offers useful spring cleaning tips on surface cleaning, disinfecting, laundry and fabric care, dishwashing, and proper home and workplace hygiene, at

SDA reminds consumers that the easiest way to get the most value out of their cleaning products is to read the product label directions. You want to make sure you're using them effectively, properly, and most importantly, safely.

The Soap and Detergent Association (, the Home of the U.S. Cleaning Products IndustrySM, is the non-profit trade association representing manufacturers of household, industrial, and institutional cleaning products; their ingredients and finished packaging; and oleochemical producers. SDA members produce more than 90 percent of the cleaning products marketed in the U.S. The SDA is located at 1500 K Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20005.

About the Survey: The 2006 National Spring Cleaning Survey was completed for The Soap and Detergent Association by International Communications Research (ICR). ICR questioned 1,009 American male and female heads of household regarding their house cleaning attitudes. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.2 percent.