How to Clean your Home During the Coronavirus Outbreak
Since the recent outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19), we have been exposed to a magnitude of information about the nature of the disease, cases, symptoms and more. In considering how we can best avoid the disease; it is important to know how clean your home during the coronavirus outbreak. By following these straight-forward home cleaning tips, you can make sure that you and your loved ones remain protected and home remains a safe haven.
Firstly, it is important to know some key household definitions:
- Cleaning refers to the removal of germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces. Cleaning does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection.
- Disinfecting refers to using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection (CDC).
What areas to focus on?
It is vital to identify high-traffic areas of your home and establish frequently touched surfaces (such as doorknobs, toilets, faucets, light switches and handles). Depending on the surface in question, use the appropriate household cleaners to clean the area and follow the instructions of the product label for best practices.
It’s also important to have a routine when you enter the house from running errands or being in public:
- Take off all clothes at the door and immediately wash,
- Remove your shoes and place in a dedicated holder by the door, disinfecting periodically
- Shower to remove contaminants from the face and hair
- Then disinfect any surfaces touched
What are some best practices for cleaning and disinfecting?
Be sure to clean the surface before you disinfect.
If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaning with soap and/or detergent. During this process, be sure to wear disposable gloves. Dispose of the gloves after attending to each individual surface.
Once clean, you can proceed to disinfect the surface by using diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, or most common EPA-registered household disinfectants.
How to tackle laundry?
You should wash dirty laundry by following the manufacturers instructions and ensure that the wash is heated. If no gloves are worn when handling the laundry, be sure to wash your hands immediately after. Most laundry detergents do not disinfect. Aside from bleach, few laundry agents do. Lysol and other laundry brands make products specifically to sanitize laundry. We recommend using this with each wash to eliminate viruses.
Instead of using a traditional hamper, consider using trash bags to transport the laundry and dispose when the load is complete. Also, we recommend washing bed linens weekly at a minimum, and more if you feel you have been exposed to a virus.
Viruses can live in fabrics, including sheets, bath towels, clothing, sofas and more. In order to extract these viruses, we advise investing in a steam cleaner that can lift dirt and grease from surfaces with ease. Ideally, steam cleaners can be used on a wide variety of surfaces, hardwood floors, carpets, kitchen countertops, showers and bathroom tiles.
This kind of equipment is great for saving time during periods in which you’ve had to increase your cleaning efforts.
What other tips are there?
In addition to general home cleaning tips, you may not have considered the cleaning of your personal items. Sanitizing items such as your phone and travel equipment can be important preventative measures. This goes for items coming into your home, too! Whether it be Amazon deliveries or groceries, be sure to wipe these down just in case.
There is a chance that you can transport the virus into our homes on the soles of your shoes. Once inside, spray shoe soles with disinfectant and leave them at the door! We advise putting on house shoes that do not leave the house. Still continue to spray those periodically as the virus can live in carpets and rugs, too.
Air Purifiers & HVAC Filters
You may be wondering if an air purifier would be effective in removing virus from the air. Air purifiers are great for removing large particulates such as mold or pollen, but with viruses being much smaller than bacteria, they are much harder to eliminate. This article provides more information as to why this equipment may not be the best investment in the fight against the coronavirus. Your HVAC system can be a good filtration system with the use of a MERV 13 technology, which will trap respiratory irritants, smog, bacteria, and viruses.
By taking the time to carefully clean and disinfect your home and items, you greatly reduce your chance of contracting the virus, as well as ensuring that your home remains a safe place during times of isolation. Knowing how to clean your home during the coronavirus outbreak could well be the difference between contracting the virus or not.
Remember these key things:
- Clean then disinfect
- Wipe down your personal items
- Steam and spray fabrics
- Wash your bed linens at least weekly (pillowcases even more)
If you are still concerned about the cleanliness of your home, please reach out to us for a quote on our professional residential and commercial cleaning services.
Please visit our COVID-19 resource page for more information.