Coronavirus is the latest global pandemic and it’s spreading, well, like a virus. For most people the symptoms are similar to our usual colds and flus, but certain vulnerable groups are at risk for scary complications. Wherever we go we should be doing everything we can to avoid infection and prevent the spread of COVID-19. These coronavirus cleaning tips will teach you how to disinfect your home to help stop the spread of germs.
Notice: For accurate and timely information on COVID-19, refer to your local health authority.
Coronavirus Cleaning Tips: How to Disinfect Your Home
One good thing about Coronavrius (if you can even call it that) is that it’s transmitted like a regular virus. That means that the same preventive measures we take during other viral outbreaks can be applied to Coronavirus too. It’s not airborne, but the contact radius to spread the infection is about 6 feet and can be transmitted through a cough or sneeze.
Disinfecting your home to help stop the spread of Coronavirus isn’t much different to the way you’d disinfect during cold and flu season. If you’re not in the regular habit, though, these tips are a great place to start to keep your house healthy.
Studies show Coronavirus can live up to 9 days on surfaces.
Coronavirus disinfecting supplies:
- Disinfecting wipes (like Clorox wipes)
- Alcohol solutions made from at least 70% alcohol
- Household disinfectant cleaners
- Dedicated cleaning gloves
You’ll want to keep disinfectant products on hand and use them regularly to disinfect your home. For the cleaning solutions, stick with the products you already use. Diluted bleach is great for disinfecting toys, for example, but a disinfectant spray cleaner is convenient for everyday use.
General Coronavirus cleaning
Giving your house a good deep clean is a great way to start the disinfection process. It’s at least convenient that this outbreak coincides with spring cleaning season. Wash all surfaces like floors and walls with your favourite disinfecting product. Strip bedding and wash in hot water or include bleach including duvets. If possible, shampoo rugs and fabric furniture.
A few more things to include in your cleaning are the washing machine and dishwasher. Follow the instructions on your machine, purchase a cleaning kit, or try a DIY solution.
Practice even better handwashing
You probably already wash your hands and know not to touch your face to prevent illness. Handwashing alone isn’t enough to keep you from getting Coronavirus. But there are ways to make it more effective. First of all, make sure you’re scrubbing for a full 20 seconds including under your nails. Second, don’t just wash your hands when you use the bathroom or before you eat.
Other times you should wash your hands:
- After returning home from being out (especially important for kids coming home from school)
- Before doing any task that will come in contact with your face or eyes (eg. brushing your teeth, applying makeup, etc.)
- After you come in contact with anything from outside (dirty laundry, coat, shoes, etc.)
Disinfect your home door knobs and light switches regularly
They’re some of the most touched parts of peoples’ homes and yet often overlooked during regularly cleaning. If you feel like there’s a real risk in your area, consider doing this daily to mitigate the chances of the virus spreading on these surfaces. Disinfecting wipes are an easy way to get this chore done quickly.
Focus on touch heavy areas
Everyone has parts of their homes that get touched more than others. We only have so many hours in the day and can’t spend all day cleaning. Focus your disinfecting efforts on those places where your family frequents.
Besides light switches and door knobs, common culprits are the buttons on appliances, coffee pot and kettle handles, writing utensils, the backs and arms of chairs, certain walls, and railings or banniers.
See more: On a cleaning spree? Check out these tips for giving your bathroom the deep-clean it deserves!
How to disinfect your home electronics
As a society we do love technology but we often forget it needs to be cleaned and disinfected too. Again, disinfecting wipes are handy here because they are usually safe for most devices. (Be cautious and don’t use them on screens unless you’re sure it’s ok!)
Regularly used accessories like your computer mouse, keyboard, your headphones, digital cameras, smart speakers should all be disinfected regularly.
Stop sharing towels and bathroom items
Normally I am against anything wasteful but this isn’t the time to worry about your laundry. Don’t share face cloths, hand towels, or other bathroom accessories even with family members. In my house we use white face cloths that I wash with bleach. You could also make a temporary switch to paper towels.
If you keep plastic water cups in the bathroom consider switching to paper or washing after each use. Oh, and don’t store toothbrushes together! (This is a good time to replace them.)
Your phone is putting you at risk
They’re more germy than public bathroom toilet seats and yet we always have our smartphones in hand. You need to get into the habit of disinfecting your smartphone (again, wipes are great for this) and washing your hands after using it.
Don’t have your cell phone around during meal times and if possible, avoid using it in crowded areas altogether.
Don’t forget the kids
Kids seem to take a lot longer than most people realize to stop licking things they shouldn’t. If you have kids in the house you’re going to have to work extra hard at these Coronavirus cleaning tips if you want to keep your home disinfected.
Remember that anything that comes home from school or daycare has the potential to be carrying extra germs. Keep it out of the house or confined to one area, if possible. Sanitize and disinfect anything that comes home from those places like water bottles, lunch containers, and clothing.
Since COVID-19 stays on surfaces as long as 9 days, toys are a perfect host for the virus. Make sure you’re sanitizing toys regularly. The easiest way to sterilize plastic, non-absorbent toys is to soak them in a diluted bleach solution. I use my bathtub for large batches. For infants, make sure you are disinfecting all their belongings regularly.
Thankfully kids aren’t getting too sick from the virus, but they can pass it on to other people if they get it.
Every little bit helps
Even if you can’t prevent Coronavirus with these cleaning tips this is still how to disinfect your home to prevent all kinds of viruses. By keeping your family healthy from everything possible it helps you stay out of the hospital which frees up important resources for treating patients who are sick with COVID-19.
See more: For more cleaning tips, check out our guide to everything you can clean using your dishwasher!