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Learning to navigate life through a global pandemic is tricky. We all know the importance of disinfecting – but are we doing it correctly? Unfortunately, properly disinfecting isn’t as simple as spraying a chemical and wiping it away. There are many factors that can impact how effective your disinfecting process is. Follow these tips below to help ensure your surfaces are germ-free!

Clean The Surface – Before disinfecting, use an all-purpose cleaner or soap and a clean cloth to remove all dirt, dust and oils from the surface. This step is important, because soils can act as a barrier and prevent the chemical from fully reaching the surface.

Apply Disinfectant – Apply the disinfectant by spraying evenly over the entire surface. If disinfecting light switches or electronics, apply the chemical to the cloth first and then wipe the object.

Let Chemical Dwell – Chemical dwell time is another key factor in proper disinfecting. Dwell time is the number of minutes required for the chemical to kill germs, bacteria and viruses on a surface. Depending on what product you are using, dwell time may vary from 1 minute to 10 minutes. The surface will need to stay wet for the amount of dwell time specified on your chemical’s product label.

Wipe Clean – After proper dwell time has occurred, wipe the surface dry with a clean cloth or paper towel.

In addition to the tips listed above, always remember to switch out your cloth to avoid cross contamination. It can help to have color coded cloths specific to their own areas. High touch-point surfaces (light switches, door handles, hand rails, dispensers, etc.) should be disinfected more frequently.