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Chore-saver products put to the test

October 22, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
In our time-stressed world, products that promise to save you time and effort can be big sellers. Consumer Specialist Ric Romero teamed up with Consumer Reports to test three "make your life easier" chore savers to see how well they really work.The Looj offers you help cleaning those nasty gutters. But when Eric Hado from Consumer Reports tested the $170 product, it kept getting stuck in the gutter.

Cleaning a sink full of greasy pots and pans is another messy chore, and the Grease Bullet promises an easy solution.

"Just fill your sink with hot water, drop in the Grease Bullet, and soak your toughest baked-on cookware. It does the work so you don't have to," the infomercial claims.

Consumer Reports' Chris Regan tested the Grease Bullet on a variety of filthy pots and pans.

After the recommended half-hour soak with Consumer Reports' most challenging dirty dishes, they were cleaner, but not exactly pristine.

"Generally, you're going to get the same effect by just soaking your dishes overnight, so you really don't need to spend the money on Grease Bullet," Regan said.

The Grease Bullet costs $10 for a pack of 12 tablets.

What about the tedious task of jacking up your car to change a flat? The Exhaust Jack from Titan is supposed to raise the car for you, using the exhaust from your car to inflate the bag.

The $100 Titan Exhaust Jack could be handy off road, but Consumer Reports found it can be tough to hook onto some tailpipes.

For cars Consumer Reports tested with dual exhausts, the air jack won't even inflate.

While these devices promise to save you time, they're likely not worth the money.