How To Sanitize and Disinfect The Right Way? The right way to disinfect or sanitize your home is by using a solution of normal water and bleach. To disinfect, use ¼ cup of bleach to 1 gallon of water and to sanitize use 1 teaspoon of bleach to 1 gallon of water. After taking contents in the required quantities, make a solution and transfer it in a spray bottle.
But before you start preparing the solution, don’t forget to wear hand gloves to protect your hands from the stringent effects of the bleach solution. Don’t also use hot water because it tends to reduce the potency and effects. Another thing to remember is you should use a bleach concentration that is appropriate for house use, instead of industrial use. A concentration of 5.30% to 6.0% of hypochlorite is considered to be safe for household use.
Mind you, you have separate bleach solutions for sanitizing and disinfecting. For sanitizing, the solution has less bleach while for disinfecting, the bleach content is higher.
Spray the solution on dishes and surfaces that want to sanitize and leave it for at least a minute. You can sanitize dishes, toys and other surfaces that may have contact with the mouth.
For disinfecting, use the stronger bleach solution and use it on surfaces that will not have contact with food items or the mouth. Floors in homes and hospitals, potty chairs and changing tables are some of the examples which need to be disinfected.
You should leave the bleach solution on the surfaces that need to be disinfected for a longer duration. The official mandate is 10 minutes but if you leave the solution on a surface for three to four minutes, it should be enough.
You can also use ammonia in place of bleach to sanitize and disinfect. But ammonia is more effective on hard surfaces such as floor tiles and glass doors and windows while bleach is good for fabrics, ceramics, dishes, and toys. Both ammonia and bleach are inexpensive options to disinfect or bleach, compared to disinfectants and sanitizers available in the market. There is a world of caution: Don’t try to mix ammonia and bleach and it results in toxic gases.
Most of us don’t understand the difference between disinfecting and cleaning and end up using one for the other, interchangeably. Here is an example that will illustrate the difference between the two. Suppose, you have accidentally spilled some food in your kitchen. Though you have cleaned it, you want to be sure that no potentially harmful germs are left on the surface of the kitchen. Now, what product or method will you employ to ensure that no germs are left? Will you sanitize or disinfect? You may wonder if there is a difference between the two. Yes, there is and it is legal, outlined by the relevant US government agency.
A sanitizer is a cleaning agent that can kill 99.999% bacteria in 30 seconds after application. Such agents are approved during a public health Detergent Sanitizer examination. Such a short span of time to kill the bacteria is important for industries and services where the same container is used almost instantly after the first use such as glasses in a bar.
A disinfectant is supposed to kill all living organisms within 10 minutes of its application, as per an EPA guideline to measure the efficiency of disinfectants. In certain circumstances, such as in a hospital, killing all the germs rather than most of them is necessary no matter how much time it takes to kill all the germs.
So, to sanitize a surface, you require a chemical process that drastically reduces germs by killing them. A sanitized surface is safe to touch. While cleaning kitchen items or toys that children may lick or bite require being sanitized regularly.
To disinfect an area, you need a stronger cleaning agent that can completely eradicate rather than reducing the presence of germs. Areas in hospitals where body fluids like blood or urine are dealt with the need to be effectively disinfected.
The process to sanitize or disinfect a surface or an area is a next level from ordinary cleaning that can remove only visible dirt or litter. But when you choose to sanitize or disinfect, you are aiming at removing the harmful presence of bacteria in your home.