How to protect your home from germs

03 April 2020

Now, more than ever, we need to make sure that our homes truly are our ‘safe place’. During the Coronavirus pandemic, keeping our homes clean and germ-free is at the forefront of our minds.

We must take every possible precaution to reduce the spread of the virus. Apart from washing our hands as often as possible, we must also regularly clean all surfaces we touch.

Here are a few essential tips to protect your home and your family from germs during this time.

Wear disposable gloves

While doing your daily cleaning and disinfecting in and around the house, ensure that you’re making use of disposable gloves, while taking care not to touch your face, as this will greatly reduce the risk of germs spreading any further. Once you’re done cleaning, dispose of the gloves and immediately wash your hands with soap and warm water for 20 seconds.

Clean before you disinfect

Although you’re most likely reaching for the disinfectant first, you should thoroughly clean the surface with a soapy sponge or cloth and then apply disinfectant afterwards. Once you’ve disinfected the surface, don’t touch or wipe the surface for at least 30 seconds to allow the disinfectant to dry. Ideally you should use 70% alcohol solutions, household cleaners and disinfectants, or diluted household bleach solutions (simply mix 4 teaspoons of bleach to 1.1 litres of water).

Pay attention to germ hot spots

Your focus should be on high traffic areas such as door handles, the kitchen sink, countertops, phones, remote controls, the fridge door, toilet handles, children’s toys and light switches. Keeping antibacterial wipes near germ hotspots will act as a reminder to wipe them down before using them.

Although wiping an item down is an effective way of cleaning it, placing smaller loose items in the dishwasher is far more effective for killing germs. If you don’t have a dishwasher, you can soak them in hot water and disinfectant. 

Replace or wash cleaning tools regularly

Regular cleaning will be counterproductive if the tools you’re using are infected with bacteria. Sponges and cloths hold onto a host of germs. These need to be washed with disinfectant soap and hot water or replaced regularly. If you’re not already doing so, you should sanitise your mop between uses, otherwise, you’re simply spreading the germs every time you mop.

Keep the bathroom and kitchen clean

Your bathroom and kitchen are two of the spaces in your home which have to be kept clean all of the time because they are the most favorite breeding grounds for the germs.

Wash your clothes and bedding often

Ideally, bedding should be washed once a week to get rid of any lingering germs in the bedroom. Germs can build up on blankets and sheets, affecting your family while they sleep. Don’t forget to wash your throw pillows, towels and curtains periodically as well.
Periodically rinse your washing machine with bleach to discourage germs from growing inside.

Take care of your pets

Those of you who have pets at home must take care to keep your pets clean. Give them a bath or shower once or twice a week even if they do not want to. And, their litter box and food bowls must also be cleaned every day.

Final Advice

While these tips won’t eliminate the risk of you or your family being exposed, they will significantly reduce your chances. Being vigilant and taking the necessary precautions will help keep everyone safe and healthy.

Wishing you all the best. Stay safe!