COVID-19 CLEANING IN 7 STEPS
COVID-19 CLEANING IN 7 STEPS
This isn’t just another cleaning. This is your health.
There has never been a more important time to keep a clean home. The most frequent question I keep getting asked is “what can I do to keep my house as clean as possible in between visits.”
Whether you currently have your home cleaned by us and are looking for ways to keep it clean in between visits OR you need to tackle the cleaning yourself, THIS CHECKLIST is for you!
#1 Clean Top to Bottom (left to right)
If you have decided to tackle the cleaning yourself, start by cleaning top to bottom starting by the door to each room working your way around the room until you get back to the door. By doing so, you will be sure not to miss anything. Once you are back at the door, you know you have cleaned everything in the room! Always finish by doing the floors last!
#2 Surface Cleaning
Make sure all of your surfaces are free of dirt and grime by using an all purpose cleaner and a microfiber towel. You can not move on to disinfecting/sanitizing if the surface you are trying to disinfect is dirty.
#3 Doorknobs & Light Switches
THESE areas are the most common missed areas during cleanings whether you are hiring a service or doing it yourself. The CDC recommends disinfecting your high touch areas frequently.
Cleaning vs. Sanitizing vs. Disinfecting
Know the Difference!
There are A LOT of products out there that do all 3, but what is the difference?
The difference involves ‘dwell’ time. Dwell time is the length of time you have to let the product sit WET on the surface before you can wipe it off/dry it.
Most (if not all) disinfectants and sanitizers have a dwell time.
So let’s break this down:
When you are “cleaning” you are removing dirt, debris, and germs from the surface. Think, crumbs on the counter, sticky juice spill, soap scum in the shower or germs. We recommend you use a microfiber towel while because of its excellent ability to remove germs. When you clean with a microfiber towel, you can use your favorite household cleaner or you can even just use water (that’s how amazing they are and you can learn more about them here). Cleaning must be done before you can move onto sanitizing or disinfecting.
It is very common for the average user to spray and wipe and think they are disinfecting because the bottle says “kills 99.9% of all germs”. However, if you are just simply spraying and wiping, most likely you are just ‘cleaning’, and not killing any of the other germs or viruses the product claims to protect you from. (read: make sure you are reading the back of the bottle prior to using and understand the dwell time)
Sanitizing would be the next step up from just cleaning. You’re killing/reducing the number of bacteria present by 99.9% (3 log10). To put it simply, sanitizing will kill most of the harmful bacteria on the surface. Sanitizing is better than cleaning alone and is common for most restaurants to use in their kitchens as they are focused on killing most of the bacteria. Sanitizing will also have a shorter dwell time than disinfecting.
Disinfecting requires the longest dwell time. In order to disinfect, the product must have a 100% kill (6 log10) of an organism. If we start with a million organisms on a surface, then a disinfectant must kill 100% of them. Hospitals disinfect. (This is what our exGERMinator does and is even being used at some of our local hospitals as well!)
It is sooo important that you are following the directions on the product. Some disinfectants have really high or low PH levels and are not safe for all surfaces. Again, the areas you are wanting to disinfect need to be ‘clean’ first, and prior to disinfecting.
#7 Wash Your Hands
Whether you just had your home cleaned to help stop the spread of COVID-19 or just spent your whole day cleaning, you don’t want it to go to waste.
Especially if you just disinfected your home. Which means, anybody coming into your home MUST wash their hands prior to touching anything else.
It’s a lot easier to disinfect 1 door knob and faucet handle over and over again, than it is to redo the ENTIRE house.
ONE MORE THING…
I received an email from John Barrett, Executive Director, ISSA (the leading trade association for the cleaning industry worldwide which of course, we are a member of) stating the following:
“I had the distinct honor to represent ISSA on a White House Communications Call with President Donald Trump. I was encouraged by the call and I am so pleased that our industry is viewed as essential first responders in this time of need. I commend you for your efforts to flatten the curve in your respective businesses and encourage you to continue to meet the needs of those you serve however you can.”
It is very humbling to think that as house cleaners, we are viewed as essential first responders during this pandemic. WOW! I have never been more proud of my staff and I know I speak on behalf of all of them, we all feel so honored to serve all that we can to help stop flatten that curve!
We will get through this! Until then, stay healthy everyone!
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