Survey: 1 in 5 adults can’t change a lightbulb, boil an egg

LONDON — Are you handy enough that if a lightbulb went out in your home you’d be able to change it? Believe it or not, one in five people aren’t so skilled. In fact, a new survey of people in the United Kingdom finds not only do about 20 percent of people not know how to change a bulb — the same number aren’t sure how to boil an egg, either.

The British insurance company Aviva recently released their annual Home Report which detailed, among numerous findings about how people do work around the house, relatively common tasks that people encounter. The company surveyed 2004 people across the UK in February and March about their habits and roles at home.

A stunning new survey from the United Kingdom found that one in five people did not know how to change a lightbulb or boil an egg.

In addition to just one in five not being able to change a lightbulb or boil an egg, the survey found that nearly a third of the participants couldn’t cook any meal on the fly. And if someone were to spill a portion of their meal on their clothes or on the floor, only 59 percent would know how to get rid of the resulting stain.

Only 37 percent could change a flat tire.

The findings were even surprising to the folks behind the study.

“As a nation we tend to take pride in our ability to do things ourselves in and around the home, so it’s a surprise to see there could be a skills gap in places,” says Aviva Propositions Director Adam Beckett in a press release. “That said, we also know that people lead busy lives, so while we enjoy doing things ourselves, we also appreciate the opportunity to leave things to a professional from time to time, particularly with some of the more challenging jobs.”

Interestingly, while 50 percent of those surveyed said they learned how to do a home task on their by trial and error, plenty of people are turning to the internet for help, especially millennials. The study found four in 10 people aged 25 and under prefer learning do-it-yourself chores online. That’s more than twice the number in the age group who turn to an actual book for help.

Here’s a look at the polled tasks and the number of people who indicated they could successfully complete them:


 Task Percentage who feel confident doing this task
Boil an egg 81%
Change a light bulb 79%
Cook a complete meal without using a recipe 69%
Read a map 66%
Sew on a button 65%
Unblock a sink 62%
Remove a stain from a carpet or clothing 59%
Change a baby’s nappy  57%
Wire a plug 57%
‘Bleed’ a radiator 53%
Check oil levels in a car 53%
Put up a shelf 47%
Put up wallpaper 39%
Change a flat tire  37%
Change a washer on a tap  30%
Fit tiles 22%

Click here to read the entire report, which broke down the findings by age groups and revealed many other interesting results.


  1. It’s not just the UK. What’s more, if the net worth of those polled were revealed they’d be in the upper percentile of people on the planet. While the people able to do those simple chores or build their homes, build their cars, harvest the kale they claim to eat, raise the beef they actually eat, cure the pot they smoke, cut the coke they snort, etc… are considered to be the dregs of society.

    If one knocked on my door he’d given a fish hook and a spool of line. And not from the generosity of showing him how to care for himself either. Just for the sheer joy of watching the sob starve himself to death!

  2. Liberals. Helpless fools destine to starve. I could weld at 7. Drove a dozer at 5. Been a engineer for 32 years.

    People today are helpless children. The product of socialism because knowledge is power and socialist hate anyone who doesn’t need their sorry, pathetically parasite arse…

  3. Look at the numbers: 83% is the highest percentage on ANYTHING, and it’s one of the activities that makes the headline for being a disappointing percentage? Yes. The real news is that on ANY household activity, 20% of people, or drastically more, don’t feel comfortable with their ability level. News? Nope. It’s just a survey, folks. Surveys have next to zero relationship to reality.

  4. Maybe they should be calling this the “Incompetent Generation”. Also shows the total inadequacy of the educational system and parenting too.

  5. Fill a pot with cold water to just above the level of the eggs.
    Put element on high, put pot on element.
    Turn off element when pot has boiled. Remove pot from element.
    Leave eggs in water for 10 minutes (for hard boiled, for soft boiled around 7-8).
    How is that hard? How do these people now know how to do this?

    1. I put a dozen cold eggs into a covered steamer insert over medium-low boiling water for 35-40 minutes (too high a boil tends to crack them).
      Then turn off the heat, leave covered until cooled to room temp, put into refrigerator.

      Perfect every time and I believe easier to peel than the immersed method above (using eggs at least two weeks old helps with peeling as well).
      Don’t tell the leftists who can’t do this; let ’em starve out of ignorance to improve the world a bit.

  6. The study was flawed. One doesn’t actually ‘change’ a light bulb when it burns out. One simply ‘replaces’ the burned out bulb with a new working bulb.

    “The findings were even surprising to the folks behind the study.” This is only because those conducting the study apparently don’t often interact with other people.

      1. Just because you can’t spell ‘One’ and ‘Four’ is no reason to denigrate another’s chosen stylization…. sorry that I don’t meet your high standards … wonder why you attribute that to laziness? …. apparently you favor form over substance …. which it turns out – fortunately, is your problem, not mine.

  7. how many psychiatrists does it take to change a lightbulb?
    just one, but the lightbulb must really want to change.

  8. In my experience, it’s not limited to the list above.
    Leftists just can’t seem to do much of anything that’s useful.

  9. This explains why leftism still has a hold over a good chunk of the world population. 63% can’t change a tire? Really?

    Percentage of people who feel confident using the internet to find true information: 5%.

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  11. 1 In 5 Adults In The UK Can’t Change A Light bulb, Boil An Egg………………………………

    lol in the USA we call them LIBERALS…..HAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA

  12. You know that you are just being a hateful, intolerant, bigot for wanting to change the light-bulb, right?

  13. Of the 1 in 5 people who can’t boil and egg or change a light bulb, 99 out of 100 of them are useful idiot democrats.

  14. Was the survey specific as to ability? Q: Can you change a lightbulb vs., do you know how to change a lightbulb, vs., have you ever changed a lightbulb?
    WHAT DOES SOMEONE IN A WHEELCHAIR DO TO CHANGE A LIGHTBULB IN A FIXTURE THEY CANNOT REACH, WHEN USING A LADDER IS NOT AN OPTION??? Some folks who are quick to condemn, mock, ridicule, and judge, are also short on knowledge, experience, imagination, and empathy.

  15. I love how this is blamed on everything from Obama, to the Govornment, while totally overlooking the FACT, that if anyone WANTED to learn to do these things, it’s a simple Google fix or a YouTube video away. CALM DOWN you easily riled FOOLS.

  16. I see the study broke down the results by age group. Perhaps it might have been interesting to see it broken down by race, country of origin, you know, stuff like that?

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