How To Clean and Disinfect Your Home in the Age of COVID-19

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You’ve always wanted to maintain a clean home by removing germs from surfaces and dust from the air. During the current pandemic, it’s even more important to reduce the risk of spreading viruses to family members. Let’s look at some of the cleaning tips that will keep you safer.

Basic Cleaning Rules

Always wear disposable or washable gloves when you clean and disinfect. After removing the gloves, wash your hands with plenty of soap for at least 20 seconds and rinse thoroughly. When cleaning surfaces, use soap and water before applying a disinfectant. Make sure to disinfect high touch surfaces frequently, including doorknobs, light switches, countertops and faucets. If possible, keep a sick family member in a separate bedroom and have them use their own bathroom.

Effective Cleaning and Disinfecting Methods

Scientists frequently use ultraviolet light to kill germs in the laboratory. To reduce the spread of the current coronavirus, some hospitals use specialized UV robots under carefully-monitored conditions. Because the powerful rays emitted from these high-powered UV devices may not be safe for home use, smaller versions have been developed for home disinfection purposes. Light emitting diode (LED) devices are usually battery-powered and are portable. The quality of these units can vary greatly, so it’s important to research the technical capabilities of the device, including the wattage and the lumens, which measures the quality of visible light.

Household cleaning and disinfecting supplies must be handled with care. 

  • Household bleach should be diluted with water. Read the label carefully to ensure you use the proper ratio. Always properly ventilate the area during and after cleaning. Never mix bleach with any other cleansers, especially ammonia, since the fumes are toxic.
  • Alcohol solutions are effective for disinfecting surfaces as well but must be comprised of at least 70% alcohol.
  • Apple cider vinegar diluted with water is a low-cost but efficient solution for cleaning surfaces as well.

Vacuum carpeting frequently to remove dust and pollutants. Tile and linoleum should be vacuumed and then scrubbed with a gentle cleanser and soft cloth to remove caked-on dirt and food. Use an old toothbrush to remove scum from tile grout. 

Proper Ventilation Recommendations

Your HVAC system reduces dust and germs in the air. Make sure you change your filter according to the manufacturer’s instructions to maximize the effectiveness of the system. Run the fan frequently, if not continuously, to filter the air more effectively.

Air purifiers can reduce contaminants in the air, but make sure they are HEPA-compliant devices. This means they are able to remove 99.97% of airborne particles that are 0.3 microns in size. 

To improve the quality of your indoor air even further, open windows whenever weather permits. When the bathroom is in use, turn on the fan. Keep it on after a shower for several minutes as well. If you have a window air conditioner that is equipped with an outdoor vent or air intake, make sure the vent is open when in operation.

While you can’t totally eliminate every germ in your home, if you follow these cleaning tips your home will be safer for everyone in your family.

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