LEARNING NEW WAYS TO CLEAN HOME AND WORK SPACES IN THE COVID AGE
Living with Covid-19 for nearly four months now, we’re having to reassess how we clean and sanitize our homes to stay healthy and as germ-free as possible. I recently asked Guy Collison of Steri-Clean Arizona, an award-winning leader in the biohazard remediation industry, how to best protect our living spaces not only from Covid but from other bacteria that can be hazardous to health.
Guy listed a dozen surfaces in the home and at work that should be cleaned daily, like keyboards, cell phones, rings, kids’ bath toys, doorknobs, remote controls, car steering wheels, kitchen and bath countertops and dish towels.
“We find that the dirtiest parts of the home include kitchen areas due to food storage/preparation, and the use of sponges, dish towels and cutting boards; high touch points throughout the home such as light switches, refrigerator handles, remote/gaming controls and door/cabinet knobs; make-up applicators due to the bristles and nooks into which bacteria and viruses can find their way and cause skin and eye irritation; and bathrooms-surprisingly not due to the toilet seat, but the moisture from taking showers, which creates an environment to bacteria growth,” he said, pointing out that coronavirus is less likely to live in the shower, sinks and drains as it can be washed away with soap and water.
He points out that one of the most common cleaning mistakes includes not wiping a surface area clean before applying a disinfectant. Spraying Lysol disinfectant on your refrigerator door handles if you haven’t first washed the surface will not effectively kill germs. All surfaces should first be cleaned of all gross-contaminates and biofilms (clusters of micro-organisms). He also recommends folding a clean rag in quarters and using each quarter for each wipe down of the surface you’re cleaning to avoid spreading germs.
In addition, when applying the disinfectant, it must remain on the surface and wet for the recommended “dwell” time listed on the product label. Guy adds that when shopping for a disinfectant, read the label to be sure you have the right product for the germ or virus you’re wanting to kill like yeast and mold, staph and E. coli.
When contracted to clean homes, Guy and his team test for the presence of adenosine triphosphate or ATP, an organic chemical found in all life forms, to assess the cleanliness of surfaces. Because ATP is present in all organic material, most surfaces will contain some level of naturally occurring ATP; however, the reduction in ATP following cleaning indicates effective sanitization and disinfection results.
I hope you find this information useful. You can find other timely resources and information on my website, craigmernitz.com or contact me at 602-739-2385. I’m never too busy to help you reach your real estate goals.