What happens to all the products tested at Consumer Reports?
12:00 PM, Feb 18, 2012
4:36 PM, Jan 13, 2012
The halls of Consumer Reports are filled with scientists and journalists. It's a mix you rarely see. No matter what your job is at the testing facility, you may be asked to test a product. Employees test everything from bathing suits to bras.
Bras were the hot topic during our recent visit to the testing facility in Yonkers, New York.
"They are looking for staffers to find out if they have the right fit. I don't think I'm going to step up to do that, but plenty will," said Consumer Reports television news director Kate Begley.
Staffers volunteers to test products and model them. Jeremy Wright's handsome hands appeared in a recent issue about battery testing.
"I have my own agent for them now. It's really fantastic. I make sure I wear gloves to bed," Wright said.
The goofiness continues in the tablet lab. We saw a picture of a woman with big hair and big glasses. It's a picture from way back of a real Consumer Reports employee. Today, it's a useful picture for color and screen testing on tablets.
In the photo lab, pictures line the walls. They're all real employees, too. The only exception is Mona Lisa. You may have heard of her. The other pictures are employee headshots used to test the smile detector on a camera.
It's not all smiles at Consumer Reports. Some jobs will make you sick.
TV testers use test patterns to look for differences in the screen's display. In some tests, crazy patterns move from one TV to the other throughout the room. That wold make anyone's head spin.
"It gets a little nauseating," an employee said.
But, some labs are a real treat.
Testing, trying and tasting. It's all in a day's work here at Consumer Reports and when all the work is done it's time to eat.
Eating is a huge hazard. Whether it's store-bought cookies, homemade brownies, or wine. Food is a product that needs testing too. The leftovers are left in the hallways for anyone to grab.
If you can't eat it, bid on it. Consumer Reports buys the products it tests including the cars. When testing is done, workers can bid on the items in a silent auction.
TVs and cars go fast, but employees say the majority of products are sold to the highest bidder.