What Should I Be Using to Disinfect?

Last week I answered the question “How often should I disinfect?” This brought up questions such as, “what should I use to disinfect?” I will briefly give you a quick overview of what you should look for to choose the best disinfectant for your facility.

When I am visiting a customer’s facility and we take a look at what is being used to disinfect we find that the disinfectant either doesn’t have the necessary kill claims to achieve the desired results or that the dwell times are so long that the product cannot achieve the claims it already has. This then leads us into a conversation about what they could be using to disinfect in a safer and more effective manner. Here are a few of the main points that are part of our discussion.

Kill Claims

Selection of the appropriate disinfectant or inhibiting agent should best align with a specific touch point environment at any given time. First consider the categories or types of anticipated pathogens. Certain illnesses and infections are transferred through surfaces every day. In these cases, a preventative agent is usually broad spectrum in design and appropriate. Other pathogens are seasonal in behavior and disinfectants may need to be more specific during these times. In some cases, more than one disinfectant application is required to maintain healthy touch points. Areas can also experience outbreak conditions where special disinfectants are needed above preventative disinfection efforts. With the correct systems and disinfectants in use, both preventative and outbreak conditions are managed more effectively. Many cleaning products are used with the expectation of disinfection properties, but remember you must first clean and then you disinfect. Water can be a viable cleaner when the right disinfectant is applied afterwards. Eliminate the step of wiping to disinfect. Additionally, most disinfectants need dwell time on the surface to perform so if that dwell time isn’t achieved then wiping can render the best disinfectants useless.

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Dwell Times

To achieve the best result, source a disinfectant with a fast kill claim ( 30 seconds) without the need to wipe it off. This type of product can be sustainable in nature which makes it friendly to people and the environment which in turn helps maintain a healthy chemical free environment. An onsite generated disinfectant is a great source for this type of product which can achieve a 30 second kill claim and promote the healthy and safety of your staff and the environment.

This is not an exhaustive explanation of how you should choose your next disinfectant, but if you focus on the two main factors mentioned above then you will be well on your way to a healthier facility. If you would like more content like this then scroll to the bottom of the page and subscribe to our blog. Also, be sure to check out our 5 Steps to a Healthier Facility ecourse (it’s free so you have nothing to lose!).

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