We’re all looking for ways to elevate the cleanliness of our homes and offices. When new ServiceMaster by Stratos team members come on board, they’re taught how to take care of customer facilities in safe and effective ways. That same information can be applied to how we take care of their own homes, too!

Cleaning vs. disinfecting
When beginning to clean a surface, many of us might be tempted to jump straight to our disinfecting sprays or wipes. However, the area you’re cleaning might have a small collection of particles of food or dirt. While wiping the dirty surface off with a disinfectant might make the particles disappear, the surface isn’t really getting clean. Surfaces must be cleaned prior to disinfecting or the disinfectant will not work. So, before you move into step two of disinfecting, remember to finish up step one. Remove all dust or dirt particles that you can see, then let the disinfectant get rid of those germy particles that you can’t see. By both cleaning AND disinfecting, you are killing germs, and thus, lowering the risk of spreading them.

Dwell times
Now that you’ve completed a round of both cleaning and disinfecting, do not rush to wipe the surface dry – the length of time disinfectants rest on surfaces is important, too. This length of time, called a “dwell time,” means how long a disinfectant has to stay on the surface to kill all the germs. Dwell times vary significantly depending on what product you use, so read your labels carefully.

High-touch areas
By now, you’re a pro at cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, but don’t forget what types of surfaces you need to be cleaning most. Pay special attention to high-touch areas like light switches, door handles, phones, microwave buttons, coffee stations, faucets, dining tables, refrigerator handles and chair arms. These frequently-used areas are often home to the most germs. 

We hope these tips help you fight the COVID-19 fight now, and also arm you with information for future germ warfare with illnesses like our seasonal flu. Now, let’s get cleaning!

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