What’s a self-cleaning bathroom worth to you? Survey finds surprising answers

NEW YORK — One in five Americans would give up half of their annual salary just to have a bathroom that cleans and sanitizes itself — forever! A new survey of 2,000 adults found other sacrifices they’d make to never clean a toilet again include giving up eating takeout (25%), their favorite show or series (23%), and a year’s worth of internet access (22%).

With the average person admitting they are guilty of having at least two bathroom “blind spots,” it’s no surprise that 34 percent find this the most challenging room to clean. That may be due to people’s bathroom habits. The most annoying include leaving toothpaste or makeup stains on the mirror or sink (30%), forgetting to flush the toilet (29%), and peeing on the seat or around the toilet (29%).

Conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Microban 24, the survey also shows that 39 percent would be embarrassed if their guests used their bathroom when it was dirty. Similarly, two in five (40%) think guests seeing their home dirty is just as stressful as a day at work. However, as many as 60 percent say they only sanitize their home before entertaining or knowing people will see it.

Infographic on what people would give for a self cleaning bathroom

“People’s homes see a lot of traffic throughout the year, so it’s important to keep surfaces sanitized both before and after having guests over,” says spokesperson Maria Striemer, a Microban 24 scientist, in a statement. “That’s especially true during cold, cough, and flu season when homes are most susceptible to bacteria.”

During cold, cough, and flu seasons from October to February, people tend to be more proactive with cleaning. They sanitize their homes more regularly (59% vs 45%) as bacteria is on their mind more often during this time compared to the rest of the year (59% vs. 41%). 

“To prevent the spread of bacteria throughout your home, make sure you sanitize all high-touch surfaces, such as doorknobs, bathroom sinks, and countertops,” Striemer says. “While many disinfectants kill 99.9 percent of bacteria, it’s important to choose options that do this and continue working throughout the day to provide long-lasting protection for surfaces in your home.”

Survey methodology:

This random double-opt-in survey of 2,000 general population Americans was commissioned by Microban 24 between Nov. 20 and Nov. 21, 2023. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).

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