How to clean and disinfect Your Home
- Wear disposable gloves to clean and disinfect and discard after use or use reusable gloves that are dedicated only for cleaning and disinfecting. Always wash hands after removing gloves.
- Clean any dirty surfaces using soap and water first, then disinfectant the surfaces later
- Clean or launder items according to the manufacturer’s instructions separating the white and dark cloths.
- Wash your hands with soapy water every 20 minutes
- If someone is sick, keep them in a separate room be it a bedroom or bathroom to avoid the ill person getting in contact with people who are not ill).
- Follow the instructions on the label to ensure the safe and effective use of the product.
- Wear gloves and consider glasses or goggles for potential splash hazards to the eyes
- Open the windows and ensure adequate ventilation open all the windows
- Use only the amount recommended on the label
- Use water at room temperature for dilution (unless stated otherwise on the label)
- Label diluted cleaning solutions
- Make sure the chemicals are stored out of the reach of children and pets
- Do not mix products or chemicals
- Do not eat, drink, breathe, or inject cleaning and disinfection products into your body or apply them directly to your skin as they can cause serious harm
- Do not wipe or bathe pets with any cleaning and disinfection products.
Special considerations should be made for people with asthma. Some cleaning and disinfection products can trigger asthma.
If products on Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) List N: Disinfectants for Coronavirus (COVID-19)external icon are not available, bleach solutions can be used for many non-porous surfaces and will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
- Most household bleach contains 5%–9% sodium hypochlorite. Do not use a bleach product if the percentage is not in this range or is not specified. This includes some types of laundry bleach or splashes less bleach, which is not appropriate for disinfection.
- Follow the directions on the bleach bottle for preparing a diluted bleach solution. If your bottle does not have directions, you can make a bleach solution by mixing:
- 5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) of bleach per gallon of room temperature water or
- 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of room temperature water
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for the surface application. If instructions are not available, leave the diluted bleach solution on the surface for at least 1 minute before removing or wiping. This is known as the “contact time” for disinfection. The surface should remain visibly wet during the contact time.
- Ensure proper ventilation during and after application (for example, open windows).
- Never mix household bleach (or any disinfectants) with any other cleaners or disinfectants. This can release vapours that may be very dangerous to breathe in.
- Make a new diluted bleach solution daily. Bleach solutions will not be as effective after being mixed with water for over 24 hours Soft (porous) surfaces
For soft surfaces such as carpet, rugs, and drapes.
- Clean the surface using soap and water or with cleaners appropriate for use on these surfaces.
- Launder items (if possible) according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use the warmest appropriate water setting and dry items completely
For electronics, such as phones, tablets, touch screens, keyboards, and remote controls:
- Consider putting a wipeable cover on electronics, which makes cleaning and disinfecting easier.
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations for cleaning.
- For electronic surfaces that can be cleaned or disinfected, use a product on EPA List N: Disinfectants for Coronavirus (COVID-19)external icon. Many of the products for electronics contain alcohol because it dries quickly.
For clothing, towels, linens and other items that go in the laundry:
- To minimize the possibility of dispersing the virus through the air, do not shake dirty laundry.
- Wear disposable gloves when handling dirty laundry from a person who is sick.
- Launder items according to the manufacturer’s instructions. If possible, use the warmest appropriate water setting and dry items completely.
- Dirty laundry from a person who is sick can be washed with other people’s items.
- Clean and disinfect clothes hampers according to the guidance above for surfaces.
- Wash hands with soap and water or use a hand sanitiser with at least 60% alcohol after handling dirty laundry.
- Follow normal preventive actions while at work and home, including washing hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and avoiding touching eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands. It is especially important to wash hands:
- After blowing one’s nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- Before and after touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
- After using the restroom.
- Before and after entering or leaving a public place.
- Before and after touching your mask.
- After changing a diaper.
- Before eating or preparing food.
- After touching animals or pets.
- After caring for an ill person.
Hand sanitiser: If soap and water are not readily available and hands are not visibly dirty, use a hand sanitiser that contains at least 60% alcohol. However, if hands are visibly dirty, always wash hands with soap and water.